Even if you are reasonably careful with the maintenance of your PC or laptop, it can still slow down. And a slow laptop is a really irritating thing to work with, and it can easily frustrate you.
Thankfully, this doesn’t mean you should get a new laptop. In fact, there are several steps that you can take to boost the performance of your laptop. So if you want to know how to speed up your slow laptop, this post is for you. Keep reading, and take the following steps.
Jump To The Right Contents:
- 1) Limit the Programs at Startup
- 2) Run a Disk Cleanup
- 3) Find Programs that Eat Up Resources
- 4) Adjust or Disable Animations and Graphics
- 5) Check for Spyware and Viruses
- 6) Close System Tray Programs
- 6) Uninstall Unnecessary Programs
- 7) Uninstall Unnecessary Programs
- 8) Run fewer programs at the same time
- 9) Update Your OS, Apps, and Drivers
- 10) Delete Unnecessary Files
- 11) Adjust Your Power Options
- 12) Turn Windows Features On or Off
- 13) Restart regularly
- 14) Reinstall the Operating System
1) Limit the Programs at Startup
Programs that run automatically on startup can slow your laptop down. While some you may really need to run, such as antivirus software, others are maybe unnecessary. You need to limit programs at startup for speed up laptop performance.
Hit Ctrl+Shift+Escape together to launch the Task Manager, or you can also right-click the taskbar and select Task Manager from there.
Click on the Startup tab to view each program that runs on startup and the impact it has. Go through the list of the programs and select which ones don’t need to start automatically.
This process will be beneficial to the performance, especially if you can disable a few of the high impact ones. However, remember, some of these programs are essential for Windows to operate. For instance, programs that have Microsoft listed as their publisher are better left alone. If you are unsure, leave it, or you can try to find out more by doing a Google search.
To disable, just right click and click on disable. And remember, this process doesn’t disable the program, it just prevents it from running on startup.
(If you are operating on Windows 7, instead of Task Manager, you will have to find the System Configuration)
2) Run a Disk Cleanup
Windows comes with a built-in tool that helps you clean up the junk that accumulates over time. To access the Disk Cleanup tool, you need to go to the Control Panel, now go to System and Security and click on Administrative Tools, and from the list, select the Disk Cleanup.
Here, select the types of files you wish to remove and click OK. Now, click Clean up system files and select any system files you want to get rid of.
3) Find Programs that Eat Up Resources
If you find that your laptop has suddenly become significantly slower, chances are a particular program is behind this. You can identify the culprit by going into the Task Manager and finding the applications that eating up your resources.
To do that, Hit Ctrl+Shift+Escape together. If the opened Window showing only the list of programs and not the details, then click on More Details to find out information about the applications that are currently running on your computer.
To view which programs are using most of a particular resource, you can click on each header to sort the list. If you need to close any program, First, try closing the actual application. If you fail to do so, go back to the Task Manager Window, right-click the application, and hit End Task.
(If you are using Windows 7, find System Configuration instead of accessing Task Manager)
4) Adjust or Disable Animations and Graphics
The latest versions of Windows come with a lot of graphics, which include animations such as flyouts and fading effects. These contribute to a better overall experience by helping make the applications appear more refined and sleek. However, they can also slow your PC down.
Thankfully, adjusting these settings is simple and hopefully, save small processing power. Go to Control Panel, click on System and Security, then find and click on System and go to Advanced System Settings. Hit Settings in the Performance section, and you will get a full list of options.
You can opt to remove some visual effects individually, or you can select Adjust for best performance, which will remove all visual effects. It all depends on your preference, but shadow and fade features are probably some you could live without.
(If you are a Windows 7 user, search for Performance Information and Tools, now, select Adjust visual effects and use the tab named Visual Effects.)
5) Check for Spyware and Viruses
At one point or another, your computer may pick up viruses while browsing the web, but finding malware that may cause major issues on your PC is now easier than ever with the Windows Defender software. Third-party applications are also very easy to install and can be as effective in removing viruses or spyware you may have picked up.
Some programs are better than others. Some can take quite some space, which can also cause issues with speed. Ideally, you should try to find software that completely and efficiently removes malware, but doesn’t take up very much space on your laptop.
You can install two types of software to monitor your computer’s performance. Malware cleanup applications can solve blatant issues with speed or lagging or popups. However, also consider applications that run in the background and offers ongoing protection. Again, don’t forget that these applications take up space, so try to select one that doesn’t affect performance.
A bit of research can help you find the software that works with your specific type of operating system or within your budget. And downloading free software can cause compatibility issues, so before installing, double-check, so you don’t run into more performance issues.
6) Close System Tray Programs
Often, programs in the System Tray launch at startup and keep on running while you use your laptop. To access these programs, click the upward arrow located on the right side of your Taskbar.
If any of the programs on this tray you don’t need to have running, right-click it and close.
7) Uninstall Unnecessary Programs
Your laptop comes preloaded with a number of applications that you may never use, but they can eat up system resources. It is a good idea to uninstall the applications you don’t plan to use.
To do that, head over to Control Panel, from there go to Programs and Features. Go through the applications and choose the ones that you don’t need. Now, right-click on the application you wish to uninstall and hit the uninstall option.
Before you uninstall a program you don’t know about, you should check which programs are needed for your computer to run properly and which can be discarded.
And if you are unsure whether you should erase these applications or not, you can take a more thorough look at the programs you want to remove or search on the internet.
8) Run fewer programs at the same time
If you are the type of laptop user who likes to keep multiple open programs and a dozen browser windows open at once, there’s nothing to be surprised about if your PC is slowing down.
Just like multitasking can be negative to our productivity, simultaneously running a lot of programs can dampen the speed of your PC. So, instead of just minimizing programs, make a habit of closing them. This should show you some improvement in the performance of your PC.
Also, make sure your computer is running only one antivirus program. Your computer can really slow down if you run more than one antivirus program.
9) Update Your OS, Apps, and Drivers
You may have heard that a good idea for security is to keep your software up to date. This is correct, and it can also help performance. Windows will send you a notification automatically when an update is available. Just make sure you don’t continue to put it off.
You can always check for updates if you think you might have missed one. Go to Start and click the settings icon or Setting. Then go to Updates & Security and in the Windows Update tab, click on Check for updates.
Besides your OS, you should also keep your drivers and apps up to date. Again, this is good for both performance as well as security. If you think you have missed an update, you can also do a quick online search to learn which version you should be using.
10) Delete Unnecessary Files
Just like our drawers and closets, our laptops get cluttered too. You can’t really see it, but you know it’s there. And this could have a negative impact on your PC’s performance. This is true, especially if you deal with lots of large files, such as high-resolution videos, audio files, and images, on a daily basis.
Free up space by frequently deleting files and folders every week. Also, empty the recycle bin afterward. If you do this regularly, you are more likely to remember exactly what’s in the folders and files and less likely to accidentally delete something important.
(Useful Tip: Usually, HDDs run at peak speed until they reach about 90% capacity. So if you have used over 90% of the space, that is probably what’s slowing your laptop down. SSDs slow down your PC more gradually as they fill up. So in order to stay on top of things, it is recommended not to fill an SSD more than 75% of its capacity.
11) Adjust Your Power Options
To suit your needs, Windows comes with a few preset ‘power plans’. It is set to Balanced by default, which takes into account energy consumption as well as performance. But the former is only a concern if you are trying to keep the electricity bills down or running off battery. If so, you may want to change to power Saver plan option, which is not a good idea if your laptop is already slow. This plan reduces the performance of your computer to save energy. The High-performance plan, as its name suggests, is a better option. While it uses more energy, it supports performance, so it should help speed up your slow PC.
Apart from the standard plans, you can also create your own custom plan. Go to Control Panel to create your custom plan, click on Hardware and Sound, go to Power Options, and select Create a power plan. Enter the name of your plan and select Next.
You can also start with a present plan and adjust accordingly. To do this, go to Control Panel, then Hardware and Sound, then Power Options, and select Choose or customize a power plan and click on Change plan settings next to an existing plan.
12) Turn Windows Features On or Off
Go to Programs and Features from the Control Panel, check if there are any Windows components that you don’t need. Click Turn Windows features on or off, then you’ll see a list of these components.
Be careful with this process and do not turn off anything that you actually need. And again, if you are not sure about whether you should turn it on or off, the good idea is to make a Google search for it.
13) Restart regularly
This is a simple tip, but sometimes all it takes is a fresh boot. Restarting your PC can shutdown stuck programs and enable updates to take effect. When you are taking a break, it could be a good time to let your PC restart fresh. You should restart your computer at least once every week, especially if you use it a lot.
Restarting closes all the software running on your computer that includes not only the programs running on the taskbar but also dozens of services that various programs might have started and never stopped. Restarting can also fix mysterious performance issues when the exact cause is hard to pinpoint.
14) Reinstall the Operating System
If you have done everything and you are still running into issues, the last resort could be reinstalling Windows.
If you are simply dealing with slow computer performance or experiencing issues loading applications, then it typically takes a few minor adjustments to make it run more efficiently. Also, make sure you double-check if there is virus, malware, or spyware causing slow speeds or lags. After that, you can look into what else could be causing any problems so you can maintain, speed up, and check your PC performance to enjoy a better performance overall.
We hope you have learned how to make your laptop faster. Just implement some of the tips above to keep it running at top speed and to avoid getting frustrated with slow performance. Also, it is a good idea to schedule a monthly cleanup. Use the above tips as a useful checklist and keep your laptop running fast. you can also read how to keep your laptop cool.