5 Simple steps to spring clean your machine

A slow pc or laptop can be frustrating and burn up time you don’t really have. Here are five simple, practical ways you can speed up your machine.

1.    Free up storage space

Minimal memory space on your laptop or pc can slow it down considerably. There are several ways you can free up a few gigs on your local drive. First off, get rid of some of the documents and programs you’ve saved on your desktop. Then, clean up your hard drive: archive all old documents, uninstall programs you aren’t using and delete whatever you don’t need. If you do need to keep files that take up a lot of memory, it might be a good idea to invest in an external hard drive and save those documents there.

2.    Restart regularly

Other than just saving electricity, there are several other benefits to properly shutting down your computer when you aren’t using it. By rebooting your machine, you finalise any updates and installations that were performed throughout the day. A restart also acts as a RAM flush which gets rid of all the random, redundant and temporarily stored data that might be slowing down your computer. Additionally, shutting down will close all programs that are running in the background thereby allowing you full access to the maximum processing capacity.

3.    Run fewer programs simultaneously

When you only have one task to do, you can generally apply your full concentration and work efficiently to get the task completed. When you are forced to spit your attention across several tasks, they will require more brain power and often more time. Computers work the same way. All programs require memory space and CPU resources to run so close the programs you aren’t using, or take turns running them to optimise efficiency.

4.    Limit start-up processes

We already know that running too many programs at the same time will slow down your machine. Oftentimes, the default setting for programs is to launch on start-up. In other words, these programs will start on their own when you turn on your computer. While this may be convenient for the programs you use often, this setting could also launch programs that you don’t necessarily need, resulting in a decrease in the efficiency of your machine. Find the system configuration settings on your computer and make sure that the programs that are set to launch on startup are the ones you really need.

5.    Check for viruses and spyware

Once all other options have been exhausted, check your device for viruses and spyware. Malware can cause havoc on your system, so if you haven’t run a security check in a while, we suggest you do.

There are several other methods you could use to speed up your computer speed, but if all else fails, take your device into an IT specialist to have it checked out.

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