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How to speed up Windows 7 & 8

How to speed up windows 7 or 8

Unlike fine wine and good cheese, your computer doesn’t get better with age. Unfortunately, no matter how sophisticated its components may be, your system is bound to get slower over time. If you’re like most people, computer upkeep isn’t always at the top of your list, and chances are good that you’ve watched your PC’s speed decline gradually ever since you unboxed it. If you find yourself frustrated with long start-up times, laggy applications, or a glitchy display a lot more than you used to, don’t worry, we’ve got your back. To help you restore you PC to its former glory, we’ve put together this dead simple tutorial about how to speed up Windows. And better yet, it doesn’t matter if you’re using Windows 7 or 8 – we’ve included easy-to-follow steps for each operating system.

#1. Defragment your hard drive

How to Speed up Windows: Clean up Hard Drive

Files are stored on your hard drive as blocks of data. The bigger the file, the more blocks it is composed of. As you access, move, and rearrange these files, data blocks are sometimes organized in an inefficient way. Think of it like a messy office where you opened files from your cabinet and placed them haphazardly around the room. Your memory is awesome, so you can find all the papers you need, but you waste time moving around looking for them. That’s exactly what your hard drive does over time, so in order to keep all your data neatly organized and your system speedy, it’s best to defrag on a regular basis. Here’s how to do it.

Windows 7

  1. Open Disk Defragmenter by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button. In the search box, type Disk Defragmenter, and then, in the list of results, click Disk Defragmenter.

  2. Under Current status, select the disk you want to defragment.

  3. To determine if the disk needs to be defragmented or not, click Analyze diskAdministrator permission required If you’re prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.

    Once Windows is finished analyzing the disk, you can check the percentage of fragmentation on the disk in the Last Run column. If the number is above 10%, you should defragment the disk.

  4. Click Defragment diskAdministrator permission required If you’re prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation. 

Windows 8

  1. Open Optimize Drives by swiping in from the right edge of the screen, tapping Search (or if you’re using a mouse, pointing to the upper-right corner of the screen, moving the mouse pointer down, and then clicking Search), entering Defragment in the search box, tapping or clicking Settings, and then tapping or clicking Defragment and optimize your drives.

  2. Under Status, tap or click the drive you want to optimize. (The Media type column tells you what type of drive you’re optimizing.)

  3. To determine if the drive needs to be optimized, tap or click AnalyzeAdministrator permission required You might be asked for an admin password or to confirm your choice.

    After Windows is finished analyzing the drive, check the Current status column to see whether you need to optimize the drive. If the drive is more than 10% fragmented, you should optimize the drive now.

  4. Tap or click OptimizeAdministrator permission required You might be asked for an admin password or to confirm your choice.

    Optimizing a drive might take anywhere from several minutes to a few hours to finish, depending on the size of the drive and degree of optimization needed. You can still use your PC during the optimization process

#2. Free up disk space

How to Speed up Windows: Computer Checkup

Your hard disk can accumulate plenty of unnecessary junk over time, but Windows offers a Disk Cleanup tool that makes tidying up a snap.  This feature can be used to remove temporary files like cookies and browser caches, empty the recycle bin, and get rid of a variety of system files and other items. Here’s how to use it:

Windows 7

The following procedure cleans up files associated with your user account. You can also use Disk Cleanup to clean up all the files on your computer.

  1. Open Disk Cleanup by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button. In the search box, type Disk Cleanup and then, in the list of results, click Disk Cleanup.
  2. In the Drives list, click the hard disk drive that you want to clean up, and then click OK.
  3. In the Disk Cleanup dialog box, on the Disk Cleanup tab, select the check boxes for the file types that you want to delete, and then click OK.
  4. In the message that appears, click Delete files

Windows 8

  1. Open Disk Cleanup by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button, clicking All Programs, clicking Accessories, clicking System Tools, and then clicking Disk Cleanup.
  2. In the Disk Cleanup Options dialog box, choose whether you want to clean up your own files only or all of the files on the computer. Administrator permission required If you are prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.
  3. If the Disk Cleanup: Drive Selection dialog box appears, select the hard disk drive that you want to clean up, and then click OK.
  4. Click the Disk Cleanup tab, and then select the check boxes for the files you want to delete.
  5. When you finish selecting the files you want to delete, click OK, and then click Delete files to confirm the operation. Disk Cleanup proceeds to remove all unnecessary files from your computer.

#3. Make sure your computer is malware free.

If you don’t already have one installed, we suggest using one of these great free antivirus softwares to check your system. If you use Windows 8, you can use Microsoft’s built-in virus scanner called Windows Defender to locate and remove malicious software.

#4. Get rid of unused programs

How to Speed up Windows: Delete Unused Programs

As a general rule, a clean machine is a fast machine, so there’s no reason to keep any programs you don’t use. For optimal performance, delete things like trial software, limited-edition versions, and anything else you’re never going to use. The following method will work for both Windows 7 and Windows 8. Here’s how it’s done:

Windows 7 & 8

  1. Click the Start button Picture of 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.

#5. Stop programs from running automatically at startup

Windows 7

  1. Click the Start button Picture of the Start button, type System Configuration in the search box, and then click System Configuration in the list of results.
  2. Click the Startup tab. The programs set to run at startup are indicated with a check mark. You can clear the check boxes for any nonessential programs to disable them, but make sure you only disable programs you’re familiar with. When in doubt, don’t clear the check box.
  3. Tap or click the name of the app you want to disable, and then tap or click Disable

Windows 8

Using Task Manager, you can improve your PC’s performance by preventing unnecessary apps from running automatically when Windows starts.

  1. Open Task Manager by swiping in from the right edge of the screen, tapping Search (or if you’re using a mouse, pointing to the upper-right corner of the screen, moving the mouse pointer down, and then clicking Search), entering Task Manager in the search box, tapping or clicking Apps, and then tapping or clicking Task Manager.
  2. Tap or click the Startup tab. If you don’t see any tabs, tap or click More details.
  3. Tap or click the name of the app you want to disable, and then tap or click Disable.

#6. Adjust your graphics settings

Windows 7 & 8

  1. Click the Start button Picture of the Start button, type Performance Information and Tools in the search box, and then click Performance Information and Tools in the list of results
  2. Click Adjust visual effects
  3. Here you can decide if you want to let Windows choose what’s best for your computer, adjust for best appearance, or adjust for best performance. if you desperately need a speed boost, we recommend the latter.

If you’ve tried all of the above methods and your computer still seems slow, consider upgrading your computers components. Sometimes older machines just aren’t equipped properly to meet the demands of modern software applications.

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