Home > Computing > Top 10 ways to speed up Windows 7, 8.1, & 10

Top 10 ways to speed up Windows 7, 8.1, & 10

You’re starting on page 2 of this, click here to start at the beginning

Make sure your computer is malware free

Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

If you don’t already have one installed, we suggest using one of these great free antivirus apps to rid your system of unwant malware. If you use Windows 8.1 or Windows 10, then you can also use Microsoft’s built-in virus scanner, Windows Defenderto locate and remove malicious software.

To start Windows Defender in Windows 8.1, click the Start button, search for Windows Defender, and then select it from the resulting list. In Windows 10, search for Windows Defender in the Cortana search box. Windows Defender should be running automatically in both operating systems, and you can run a quick, full, or custom scan at any time to make sure you’re in good shape.

Windows 10 also offers a number of additional options for Windows Defender. To access the features, go to the Action Center, click All Settings, then Update & Security, then Windows Defender. Here, you can turn real-time protection on or off, enable cloud-based protection, allow Windows to send samples of suspicious files to help improve Windows 10’s malware detection, and configure a host of other settings.

Get rid of unused programs

Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

As a general rule, a clean machine is a fast machine, and so there’s no good reason to keep any programs you don’t use. For optimal performance, delete any trial or limited-edition software, along with anything else you’re never going to use. This is the only way to ensure unneeded applications aren’t running processes in the background that take up processor time. Here’s how to uninstall programs:

Windows 7

  1. Click the Start button, and then click Control Panel.
  2. Under Programs, click Uninstall a program. If you don’t see this page, change the View by option in the upper-right corner to Category.
  3. Click the program you want to delete, and then click Uninstall.

Windows 8.1 and 10

  1. Right-click the Start button, then click Control Panel.
  2. Under Programs, click Uninstall a program. If you don’t see this page, change the View by option in the upper-right corner to Category.
  3. Click the program you want to delete, and then click Uninstall.
2 of 5