Everyone loves a quick fix, and luckily many simple Windows optimizations are easy to apply. If you’re dealing with a slow Windows PC, you should try one (or all!) of these tweaks.
Audit your startup programs
Do you know how letting your web browser get bogged down with a bunch of extensions ruins the browsing experience? Well, Windows is not much different. Except instead of extensions, the dead weight comes from loading everything and the kitchen sink when Windows starts.
Performing a startup program audit is really simple and you will see immediate results on your next boot. You can even get immediate results by closing unnecessary apps accumulated in the notification tray.
Disable Windows animations
This is more of a psychological hack than an actual performance hack. Windows has a plethora of little animations that you may never have paid much attention to (like the animation for minimizing and maximizing windows).
When you watch the animation, it feels like something is happening (and taking time in the process). When you disable animations, the action seems to happen instantly. You won’t see a performance change in CPU utilization level or anything, but the computer will feel faster.
Check disk utilization
Just like your phone starts acting weird when you fill it up with too many apps and photos, your computer does the same. Windows needs a certain amount of free space for daily operations, saving files for hibernation, etc.
Now is the time to take advantage of Windows disk space management tools and free up some space.
Updates in early 2022 to the popular disk cleaning app CCleaner make it even more useful, so if you’re a fan of the app, make sure you’re running the latest edition to give your PC an even deeper clean.
And there’s never a bad time to consider upgrading a small hard drive to a larger one. There’s no better time than the present to trade in your small or old mechanical hard drive for a roomy SSD.
You may not be able to perform an upgrade in our suggested 5-minute window, but it’s worth setting aside a few hours on Saturday, as an upgrade from HDD to SSD is the most effective speed upgrade you could ask for before buying a new computer. .
Remove Unused Apps and Purge Bloatware
If you have space to spare and apps don’t load on startup, there’s not much harm in leaving an app there if you think you might need it in the future.
But, if you have apps you don’t use that come with a bunch of “helper” apps that give you a performance hit at Windows startup or just have huge files clogging up your drive, uninstalling them is a great way to get a free performance boost. Windows will load faster, the extra disk space makes everything run more efficiently, and there aren’t many downsides.
In addition to the apps you installed, be sure to look at the apps you didn’t install. If you bought a pre-built machine from a major manufacturer like Dell, HP, etc., there’s a good chance it’s full of bloatware apps you don’t need. Manufacturers love Packaging a prebuilt Windows PC with bloatware.
You can manually remove bloatware, but if you run into some really messy, tangled bloatware that won’t budge, consider using Windows’ “Fresh Start” feature.
Scan for malware
Old-school viruses and malware tended to have a dramatic effect, like your computer crashing because critical files were deleted. While those types of viruses have never completely disappeared, the new motivation behind the release of malware is not primarily chaos, but rather access to resources.
In the case of your computer, the resource is computing power and Internet connection. Quite often, a malware infection will make your computer feel sluggish because even though it may not be using all of your system resources, Someone else it is.
Make sure Windows Defender is up to date, and it never hurts to add an additional tool like Malwarebytes.
While Windows Defender is a solid antivirus solution, Malwarebytes does an excellent job of not only detecting malicious software, but also notifying you about potentially unwanted programs (PUPs) – software that isn’t explicitly a virus but you probably don’t want on your computer. computer. .