5 Ways to Speed Up Your Computer
Posted Friday, Jul 10, 2009 by
Chances are, the more you’ve used your personal computer, the more sluggish, skittish and unresponsive it has become. Don’t worry. Performance problems are a normal part of PC ownership.
Fortunately, there are some simple ways to “tune up” your computer and quickly get it back into prime running condition. For example:
* Use “Disc Cleanup” to free up disc space. Run this Microsoft application, found under “Programs > Accessories > Systems Tools,” to remove temporary Internet files, delete downloaded program files, empty the Recycled Bin and get rid of other useless debris that’s slowing down your system.
* “Defrag” your hard drive. When programs are added or removed from your hard drive, data can be irregularly distributed across your hard drive, making it more difficult and time-consuming for the computer to reassemble. At least once a month, run the “Disc Defragmenter” to compress your data into the smallest and most efficient amount of space. You can find this Microsoft application under “Programs > Accessories > System Tools.”
* Eliminate spyware. Spyware is a type of program that gathers and transmits information stored on your computer to third parties via the Internet. They can also hamper your computer’s performance. Most of these insidious little programs are invisible and secretly enter your computer as you surf the Web. There are a number of free anti-spyware programs you can put on your computer to protect yourself. These include Microsoft Windows Defender, Spybot Search & Destroy and Ad-Aware.
* Clean out temporary internet files and cookies. Useless data is always a drag on your system. To purge accumulated Internet clutter, open your Web browser (Microsoft Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, etc.), open the “Tools” menu and select “Options.” One of these “options” will be temp file and cookie deletion. You should clean your browser every few weeks, or whenever your Internet response becomes noticeably slow.
* Streamline your Startup file. Often, slow boot-ups are the result of simply having too many programs launching as soon as you click the “On” switch. To fix this, click your “Start” button and then click “Run.” Type “msconfig” in the window, which will launch the msconfig utility. Go to the “Startup” tab and unclick any new programs you may have recently added. (As a rule, don’t unclick program names you don’t recognize, as they may be needed to make your computer run properly.)
Perform these five easy tasks regularly and you should enjoy a faster—and more productive—computing and Web surfing experience.
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