Has your PC or laptop seen better days? Are you experiencing loading times that are so slow they can only be measured by seasons? Well, have no fear! Our quick and easy steps will help you to restore your machine to its former glory and leave you more free time to do that thing you keep meaning to do.
Remove all spyware and other nasties from your computer
This is an essential not only from the point of view of computer performance, but also your own safety. Malware, spyware and other similar programs can lurk on your computer and steal person information, bank details, credit card numbers and a lot of other data you want to keep private.
To make sure you stay safe, download a free (or paid, it’s up to you) antivirus program and set it to scan regularly, either a few times a week or every day. The antivirus will trap and delete anything that shouldn’t be there and help to protect you from any future threats. Deleting malicious programs will also help your computer’s performance. Win/win!
To find an antivirus, have a look at CNet’s top antivirus programs here.
Delete unnecessary files
Having a backlog of things you never use slows just about everything on your computer down. Empty your recycle bin, delete your temporary internet files (this will be in ‘options’ on your browser), delete any old video or image files you saved and haven’t looked at since. Freeing up some disc space will make a notable difference to your computer’s performance.
Get rid of unused programs
Have you still got the kids’ games that came preloaded on your computer? Yes? Why? You can uninstall them – and any other programs you never use – if you go to your computer’s Control Panel and click ‘add/remove programs’ (Windows). Make sure you don’t delete anything essential to the running of your computer. If in doubt, leave it.
Turn off automatic loading
Are you noticing that when you start your computer, a lot of programs open automatically? If so, this is seriously hampering the speed of your machine. The next time this happens, go into the options or tools menu of these programs and disable automatic loading. There should be an option that says something like ‘run when Windows starts’. Untick that and you’re good to go.
Turn it off, then turn it on again
In relative terms, personal computers are not very old. And yet, they still have an ‘oldest trick in the book’. Rebooting your computer gives it the chance to put all of the changes you’ve made into effect, and cures more ills than you’d expect.
If all else fails, give us a shout on: 1.866.805.2448 (US) or 0800 107 1175 (UK). You can also visit us online at http://www.virgindigitalhelp.com (US) and http://www.virgindigitalhelp.co.uk (UK).