IT Freedom Blog

A Clean Computer is a Fast Computer

by Matt Miller on

We all know the frustration – it seems like the longer you own a computer the slower it runs. I know I’ve had this thought many times, “It used to run perfect, but why doesn’t it now?”. Well there are a lot of answers to that question. Over time you install software, browse the internet and download files that take up system resources, slowing down your computer. But there are actions you can take to ensure a clean computer that's running at full speed.


Clean up the Junk

As you use your computer, files and downloads are stored, many you may not ever use, or that you once used but no longer need.

We recommend CCleaner. It’s a safe and simple alternative that helps to eliminate the junk files on your computer. All you have to do it download CCleaner (which should open by default after it’s finished downloading), click “run cleaner” and wait.

The program offers a variety of different options that can be handy once you’re used to using the program.

Remove Programs You Don’t Need or Use

  • As we talked about above with files, programs can sit on your hard drive and take up space and speed. Most new computers come with preloaded software that you may not ever use, and many of these programs run in the background while you’re using your computer slowing down the programs you really do want to run. Getting rid of unnecessary programs is easy:
  • Click the Start Menu from the Control Panel
  • Double click the Add or Remove programs icon
  • You will see a list of programs
  • For PC – simply click the program you want to uninstall and select “Change/Remove”
  • For Mac – find the program you want to uninstall and send the program to the trash, once the trash is emptied the program is uninstalled

While these steps are simple, before uninstalling a program you will want to make sure that it’s safe to uninstall that program. This is relatively easy, and can be deciphered by doing a quick google search, or you can use a tool like PC Decrapifier that will let you know what programs are unnecessary.

Keep your System up to Date

  • When that “Update” reminder comes up, don’t be so quick to press “skip” or “remind me later.” Operating system updates are designed to fix bugs, security holes, and optimize system performance. Often times, taking the small amount of time to let the system run necessary updates can improve the speed of your computer in the future.

Perform Malware Scans

  • Performing malware scans will help you decide on future actions to clean up your device. If you have the opportunity, working with an experienced IT Professional to get the best anti-malware programs is a good investment. If viruses – including malware – have infected your machine you can be sure it is taking up a good portion of your computers resources, slowing it down.

Making sure that you have an anti-malware program is important, but you also need to make sure that program is updated to protect against the newest threats.

Speed up Your Startup

  • While this can take a little more time, it’s just as important as all the above tips. Every time you restart your computer you’re not just starting the computer but you’re also starting quite a few programs that run in the background. There is a way to make sure that all of these programs don’t immediately start running though.
  • To disable startup programs:
    • Click the “Start” or “Windows” button in the bottom left corner
    • Type ‘mscongif’ (without the quotes)
    • This will bring up the System Configuration tab, switch to the startup tab and disable all the programs you don’t need to open on startup.
      • Windows 7 – uncheck the boxes and then click “Okay” - you will be required to restart your computer
      • Windows 10 – click to open the task manager, click the application you want to disable and click the “disable” button

We are definitely aware this was a lot of information, and there are certainly things that can be confusing in these processes. If you have any questions or thoughts, please feel free to reach out. Our team is always here to help!

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