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The experience – most likely – must have been an exciting one when you first bought your laptop, seeing how it zipped along when executing tasks. However, you may have observed lately that your notebook computer has become as slow as a snail. You may wonder what has happened to the once-speedy unit to cause this behavior. Heavy or improper usage and component degradation do result in slowdown in performance. If you are having the challenge of a slow laptop, we present some ways you can go about correcting the problem.

Uninstall redundant programs

It is common for some manufacturers to load their laptops up with bloatware, programs you probably will not have need of. Over time, you may also install certain programs that may become seemingly useless after one- or two-time use. These useless utilities take up system resources that could be useful to more important programs. Therefore, it is important to identify programs you do not use regularly and delete them. It will not suffice to delete these from your Desktop as what you see there are merely shortcuts. Follow appropriate steps for uninstalling programs, such as using the Control Panel in Windows.

Clean fans and vents

You will be amazed at the amount of dust you will find inside your laptop when opened, especially if you have been using it for long and has never had it opened. Notebooks do gather dust in fans and vents regardless of how clean the usage environment is. The dust not only causes allergies, but also impacts on performance. It interferes with your computer’s cooling mechanism. This can cause the system to run slow or even shut down when heat level gets too high. It is therefore recommended to clean the fans and vents from time to time using a can of compressed air or a brush.

Clear cookies and temporary internet files

You can also give your laptop speed a boost by removing temporary internet files and cookies. This can build up over time and impact on performance. You can clear cookies via the Internet options on your browser. The popular utility CCleaner can help you do this more easily. It clears cookies, temporary internet files and unused entries in the registry, among others.

Disable start-up programs

There are certain programs that are automatically activated whenever you boot up your laptop. These are start-up programs. They work in the background when your computer is on, even though you may not need them active. It should be noted that some of these are essential, especially antivirus services and programs from manufacturers and OS maker. These start-up programs can drain your system resources resulting in slow performance.

So, disabling those considered less useful to be running all the time will be beneficial. In Windows 7 or earlier version, you can do this by opening the Start Menu and typing “msconfig” to launch the system configuration menu. You select the Startup tab and uncheck programs considered not necessary to start on boot-up.  The start-up programs can be accessed via the Task Manager in newer Windows.

Upgrade RAM

Upgrading RAM

It is possible that RAM is the reason you are having a slow laptop. Hardware may experience degradation with time or as a result of heavy usage. If checks reveal this as the source of the problem, an upgrade to new, bigger RAM may be the solution to your problem. The interesting thing here is that it does not cost a lot to get better RAM these days. You can also handle the upgrade by yourself, following directions in your notebook manual.

Disk Defragmentation

If your laptop uses a hard disk for storage, that might just be the source of the slowdown you are experiencing. Information stored on a hard disk is often scattered, causing your laptop to work harder to bring the pieces together when needed. This phenomenon is called disk fragmentation. The remedy is disk defragmentation, which helps to orderly reorganize this information to improve performance. A Disk Defragmenter is built into the Control Panel for this purpose. There are also third-party utilities that can be used. It should be noted that some newer operating systems does this automatically.

Upgrade to SSD

You can save yourself from issues associated with hard drives, such as fragmentation, by going for a solid state drive instead. SSDs are zippy and deliver awesome boot times. They may even make a lightweight CPU look good. Their read and write speeds are way better than those of mechanical hard disks since they lack moving parts.

Solid-state drive
Solid-state drive

There are several other steps you may take to speed up your laptop. These include reinstallation of OS, using the ReadyBoost feature in Windows and turning off animations. You can take advantage of these tips before considering bringing on a professional. Some savings can be made this way.

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