How to Speed Up your Computer
- Scandisk your hard drive: Has your computer ever crashed, making it impossible to shut it down properly? Have you ever experienced a power outage? These problems and others can cause damage to your system files. Windows provides a utility called scandisk that will automatically detect and fix much of the damage, improving your system's performance in the process. (see How to used Scandisk)
- Run Disk defragmenter: Over time, the data on your hard drive gets scattered. Defragmenting your hard drive puts your data back into sequential order, making it easier for Windows to access it. As a result, the performance of your computer will improve. (see How to use Disk Defragmenter)
- Scan for Viruses: Detecting and cleaning viruses is an excellent way to improve your system's performance. If you have an anti-virus scanner installer on your computer, have a disk with one on handy, or a place to get a free scanner (Such as avast! or AVG free), run a thorough virus scan on your computer, it will help to detect any harmful computer viruses and remove or contain them in a secure way. Viruses will slow down you computer, so it is handy to have.
- Removing Unneeded Programs: Removing programs that you no longer use can free up space on your computer and speed up your system's performance. However, you need to uninstall the programs properly to see much improvement; deleting them is not enough. (see How to use Disk Cleanup)
- Opening the system configuration: This tool allows you to edit your windows start-up configuration changing what will run and what will not. Open the utility by going to Start, and then Run. Afterwards, type in “msconfig” and press OK.
- Editing the startup settings: One way you can speed up your computer is to prevent programs from launching themselves at start-up. Not only do the unwanted programs delay the start of Windows, they also continue to slow down your computer since they use system resources.
- Adjusting your computer for best performance: Windows XP provides a number of interesting visual effects like animated windows and fading menus. These effects, however, can slow down your computer. In this tutorial, you'll learn how to customize the visual effects to match your preferences and performance needs. (see How to Adjust Visual Effects of your Computer)
- Increasing the virtual memory: Virtual memory, also known as Page File memory, uses a portion of your hard disk and acts like RAM allowing more information to be used and made at one time. It stores data about programs while your computer is running, and dumps it as needs be.
- Check for Spyware and Adware: Spyware is software that allows companies to monitor what websites you visit or even access your computer. Adware is software that displays advertisements. Both use system resources and slow your computer down. Detecting and removing the programs will improve system performance.