Why does a computer run slow?

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There are many other things factor into the lagging of performance. Registry errors are one possible cause. Fragmentation is another. When data is fragmented on a disc can affect how your system can find and use it. How many different programs are active and running at any given time, if a disc is full and not kept defragmented, then data is spread about taking the controller arm on the disk longer to locate all pieces of any given information.

Viruses and spyware are extremely common problems which worsen performance as people do not properly know how to avoid them. You can avoid viruses by watching your computing habits and installing antivirus software. Computer performance also depends on the RAM it has. If it has too little RAM then the computer needs to place data it needs to access temporarily on the hard drive making the process slower. Having way too much RAM might theoretically cause the PC to take too long to locate the data and will make the process slower. At least 1 gigabyte to 2 gigabytes of RAM is recommended.

Furthermore, remove all the big files from your desktop if you're not currently using them. If your hard disk is full, you can use an external USB hard drive and move all your movies and pictures there. Then update you antivirus and antispyware and run a full scan. After that, defragmentation is a good idea. If the problems still persist then you should use a decent registry cleaner.

To make a computer run faster:
1. Remove any junk. Preliminary steps include emptying the recycle bin, removing programs that you don't recognize or no longer want, and looking for files that you have saved that you no longer want. Clean any temp files, the web cache (if you can delete it at this point, if not, then skip until after you scan for malware), and cookies. You can run Cleanmgr that is included with Windows. Downloading and running CCleaner is advised. Removing unwanted things first will make malware scanning faster. Plus more room on the hard drive means the drive will defragment faster, and Windows will have more room for virtual memory. You might want to do all of this weekly or so.

2. Removing spyware and malware should be among the first things you do. Viruses will slow the computer, cause it to crash or even destroy the file system. Viruses also collect users' passwords and confidential private information. They will attack your computer through the backdoor.

Run a security scan to eliminate viruses, spyware and Trojans. The best free antivirus is 'Avast Antivirus' or 'AVG Anti-Virus': Run your antivirus software weekly.

Currently, the best free spyware software is 'Malwarebytes Anti-Malware' . The free version doesn't have scheduled scans or real-time protection but it was remove any spyware currently on your PC. 'Spybot Search & Destroy' is totally free software that will remove most spyware too. Two of the best paid anti-spyware software are 'Stopzilla' and 'Webroot Spy Sweeper'. Run your anti-spyware weekly.

Increase virtual memory to enhance the slow computer performance. If you find yourself running out of virtual memory, or keep getting messages showing you the low virtual memory, you had better increase it immediately. To do this:

* Right click "My Computer"--Properties
* Click on the Advanced tab. Click Settings button under Performance.
* Click Change to reset virtual memory you want.

4. Disable unnecessary Windows services. Unnecessary Windows services can slow your computer. Depending on how you use your computer, all of the services might not be necessary. You can often gain performance by performing this step.

Scan and fix registry errors. The system registry is very important in Windows. It is unavoidable to have registry errors if you install or uninstall programs and visit various websites frequently. So you may want to fix registry errors regularly. This can help you make your computer run faster and more stable. Cleaning registry errors also can help you fix and avoid Internet errors, blue screen of death and system crashing problem which caused by the corrupted or malicious registry entries.

Run a free registry scan to speed up PC. This can discover all the entries in the registry that are not needed, as well as corrupt and damaged entries that are slowing your computer right down. You can do all this automatically with no computer knowledge at all in minutes.

You can also internally defragment the registry by using a program called NTRegopt. To use it in Vista and higher, you need to run the program with administrator rights, and if the registry is on a hidden hard drive partition, then that partition will need to be assigned a drive letter. One way to assign a drive letter to a hidden drive is to use the Disk Manager administration MMC snapin that comes with Windows. This will make the registry smaller. Just removing stale entries won't necessarily make it smaller.

6. Check your hard drive for errors. In most version of Windows, go to My Computer > right click on the C drive > select properties > click on the tools tab > click on the check now button under error checking. Reset Windows and a check will be done during boot up. Run this check every 3 months. This is can greatly speed up your slow PC.

It would help to go to your hard drive manufacturer's site and find their hard drive testing utilities, since they can test hard drives in ways that Scandisk cannot. That can be used to spot a hard drive that may be starting to fail.

In some cases, you may need to find tools to reset the hard drive registry settings in case the drive is only being accessed in PIO mode, not UDMA or any of the SATA modes. You should do this...

  • If the hard drive or CD/DVD access is incredibly slow.
  • After relocating any endangered data to spare sectors.
  • After, replacing the hard drive if necessary.
  • After a number of unsuccessful CD/DVD burns.

Defragment the hard drive.

8. You can often do inexpensive hardware upgrades. You can often add more RAM rather cheaply. If you have under 4 Gb or don't have all the banks filled (even if you don't have all the sockets per bank filled), then you should add some. Sometimes for an older computer, you can find a faster compatible CPU for it on eBay. Video cards are something else to consider upgrading. You should find out what video card you are using, and then see how it benchmarks on a site like Passmark. Then go to sites like Amazon, eBay, Tigerdirect, and NewEgg and see what you can afford and how it compares on the benchmark site to what you currently have. Often, you can notice quite a difference when going from a poor video card to even an average one.
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