A slow computer can be caused by a variety of different things - one of which is having too many unused, redundant or temporary files clogging up your hard drive.
You’ve probably been told before that cleaning your PC can help to speed things up a bit, but what does that actually mean and can it really help to improve the speed of your computer?
What does cleaning your PC mean?
Although keeping the outside of your computer clean is important for general hygiene and the smooth running of your device, that's not the type of cleansing referred to in this post.
Here we are discussing the cleaning up of your files, registries and other unnecessary junk that has built up without you knowing it.
Why should you consider cleaning your PC?
Using your computer on a daily basis, even for everyday routine tasks, can lead to a build up of hundreds or even thousands of temporary and unnecessary files. Although these files are supposed to be temporary they can often stick around a lot longer than desired and the only way to remove them is by finding them and deleting them.
If left alone these files will take up space and can cause your computer to run slowly. Regularly cleaning your PC should be treated as a necessary part of your device maintenance and will stop you running into problems in the long run.
How do I clean my PC?
Unless you have a lot of time on your hands, and know where to look, you will struggle to clean your PC yourself, which is why software has been created to do this for you. PC cleaning software will save you hours of time by trawling through all of your files and working out which ones you need and use and which ones are simply taking up space.
There are many different computer cleaning software on the market and the one that’s right for you will depend on your budget and the type of device you own. The best thing to do is to read reviews online that discuss the various different types of cleaning software and what they are capable of.
Although some of the more professional softwares are paid for there are also plenty out there that are free to download just be careful of scammers who will try to make you part with your cash by showing you a ‘your PC is infected message’ or ‘5467 threats found’ notification and will then ask you for your credit card details to remove the threats. You will be able to avoid these scams by using software that has been tried and tested by others.
How often should I clean my PC?
How often you should clean your computer is very much dependent on how much you use it. If you are using it infrequently then you will need to clean it less, if you use it daily then you will need to clean it more.
As a general rule, once a month is enough to keep most computers clean but if you notice your computer slowing down again in the interim then it may be worth cleaning it a little more often.
But i’ve cleaned my PC and it is still slow?
A slow computer can be caused by a number of things. If you’ve cleaned your PC and it’s still running slow then some other things that may be slowing it down include:
How many tabs you have open on your browser
Having too many tabs open in your browser will be using a lot of computer memory. Instead of having your favourite links stored in tabs in your browser, instead try using the bookmarks bar, this will keep them organised and accessible them without using up any memory.
2. How many browser extensions you have running
Check to see how many browser extensions you have. Some of them could be running in the background. If you don’t use them then deactivate them or delete them.
3. If you have a virus or if your virus software is running in the background
A virus can cause your computer to slow down by running in the background without you knowing it, run a scan and check for viruses.
But also be careful with your antivirus software, when conducting a dscan your anti-virus software uses a lot of processing power and this can also slow down your computer. Try to conduct scans when you aren’t needing to use your device.
4. How many programmes are trying to start at once
When you first start your PC how many programmes try to automatically open? These are called startup programmes and they start up straight away to try and get you to use them. Startup programmes use a lot of processing power, enter your programme settings to stop them from opening when you start your computer.
5. If you have used all your RAM
RAM stands for Random-Access Memory. If you have used all your RAM then consider installing more so that your computer can run more programmes at once.
6. If your hard drive is getting full
Your computer will start to slow down long before your hard drive is completely full, in fact it can start to slow down at just 85% capacity.
Cleaning your computer will help to free up space in your hard drive but if this isn’t enough to free up significant space then consider moving some files such as pictures, videos or music onto an external hard drive.
7. Your OS needs an update
An outdated operating system can also cause your computer to run slowly. Always try to keep up-to-date with the latest OS updates to keep things running smoothly.
OS updates are also very important for your device safety as they often included fixes to areas of your computer that hackers may be trying to exploit.
Although a slow computer can be a nuisance thankfully there are plenty of softwares and solutions to help you speed it back up again.