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Slow Computer? Here's What To Do

Slow Computer

As everyone knows, the more you use your computer, over time your computer will slow down and become more sluggish. Your Internet browser will go slower, opening up applications will become sluggish, and when you reboot your computer it seems to take forever.

Windows 10 users are no exception to this. Even the latest operating system tends to fall victim to occasional slowdowns. This can be extremely frustrating for your small business and reduce your overall efficiency. Here are some tips that will help you keep your computer running smooth, fast, and may eventually help save you some cash.

Check the space on your hard drive and your temporary files

As you add more programs and files to your small business computer, your storage eventually starts to fill up. These added files and programs could eventually slow down your system and cause it to take a little longer to load. We recommend that you keep 15 to 20% of your hard drive free to maximize the speed and potential of your installed hard drive for optimal performance.

In Windows 10, there's an easy way to check for free space. If you go to settings, then select system, then select storage, you will see the available space on all of your hard drives. When you select the hard drive you're inquiring about, it'll give you a breakdown of categories and the storage it is occupying. For example, you could click on the C drive and see how much space your temporary files are taking up.  Temporary files are just that. They are temporary. You could have Windows 10 clear all of your temporary files to help clear some space.

Uninstall programs that you don't use anymore

Many computers come pre-installed with programs that we never even open or look at. Uninstall programs that you don't use that occupy some of your hard drive space and may even have some temporary files and folders installed. They could be running in the background and could be using some much-needed resources to keep your computer running fast and efficient. We recommend uninstalling any programs not currently being used.

Turn off visual effects in windows

Windows 10 comes with a lot of nice visual effects and gimmicks that look pretty, but if your computer is not working up to peak efficiency, it might struggle to render all those fancy visual effects and transparencies, taking resources from the most important tasks.

You may want to adjust the appearance and performance in windows to a mode that is optimized for performance. To do this, search for “adjust the appearance and performance of windows” and check the box for “adjust for best performance”.

Prevent unneeded startup programs

One of the first things we notice on small business computers is unnecessary programs that start up when the computer is booting. This dramatically slows down your boot-up time and the overall efficiency of the computer.

In Windows 10, it's really easy to check your startup programs. In the search bar just search for task manager and click on the startup tab. Here you will find the list of all of the computers that boot during the startup of the computer. Select the program you don't want to have boot up and click disable.

Malware check

Another popular reason why computers run slower than normal is because of malware. Malware is notorious for slowing down programs and actually causes the most damage because it can steal your personal and small business data. It's extremely important and vital that small businesses run periodic scans and have the protection in place to prevent malware. Reach out to your IT provider or contact Side by Side IT to see how we can help prevent malware from infecting your small business.

Defragment your drives

If you have a standard hard drive in your computer, there are platters in that hard drive that spin like a record player. As the computer writes to that platter, it writes to it at different areas of the platter. This causes the hard drive to become “fragmented”. When it tries to read that information later on, it has to look at different areas of that platter to find all the information. This causes a slowdown of your hard drive and impacts your performance.

Windows 10 can optimize and defrag your hard drives automatically according to a schedule that you set. Do a search on windows for “defrag and optimize drives”. This is where you can change the settings and defragment your hard drive.


Another solution to help speed up your system is to possibly add more RAM. This stands for Random Access Memory. It's a chip installed on your computer that helps to keep things in memory so the hard drive doesn't have to keep loading what it needs. A lot of computers may either 4 GB or 8 GB of ram or more. Many computers you can install more ram to help with that memory retention which in effect helps to speed up your computer.

Restart your computer

I'm sure you've heard a friend or coworker ask you, “have you restarted your computer?” Believe it or not, this fixes a lot of issues with a computer. It flushes out the memory and some processes/services that did not closeout gracefully before.

If you have a computer in your small business that is sluggish or may need some tune-up, contact us and we'll make sure we'll address those issues and discuss how we can prevent that in the future with our Tech Up-To-Date Service.


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