How to Speed Up Your Slow PC

We live in a fast-paced world where speed is everything – and that means a fast connection and a computer running at peak performance. When our tech slows down, it can be incredibly frustrating, if not impossible, to get our jobs done. Here are some helpful tips from our Melbourne-based IT support team on how to make your PC faster.

Know why it’s slowing down

There are several common reasons a computer will get slower and having an idea of what’s causing the go-slow will help you correct this issue.

1. Old age

Computers don’t get less powerful over time, but they do start to struggle when their limited processing and storage capacity is strained by new tech. Just think about how many apps and programs you used on your computer 10 years ago compared to today and you’ll see how it may be getting overloaded.

Common problems here include:

  • Failing hard drive – Traditional hard drives have a set lifespan because the constantly moving parts slowly wear out over time. It may last up to 5 years, but not much more than that. A good fix is to upgrade to a solid-state drive (SSD), which doesn’t experience this type of degeneration. They are also 10 times faster than standard hard drives and can take a boot time of 3-5 minutes right down to about 20 seconds.

 

  • Full hard drive – When a hard drive gets to about 95% full, performance drops by around 50%. This is because a certain amount of hard drive capacity is used to store temporary files that launch programs, so the computer can no longer find the space to run your software. Start by checking your hard drive in the settings to see how full it is. Then fix it by emptying your trash, deleting unnecessary programs, and moving documents and data onto an external drive or a cloud account to free up more space.

2. Internet connection problems

If your computer is only slow on certain connections, for example at home or a coffee shop but not while you’re at the office, then it is more likely to be a connectivity issue. Wi-Fi can be slow for any number of reasons – too many connected devices on one network, limited internet connection speed from your broadband package, or a slow router.

Start by running a speed test to see if your internet connection is performing as promised by your broadband provider. If it isn’t, then you need to contact them to lodge a ticket. If it is as fast as it should be, then you can consider upgrading to a faster connection. You can also disconnect any devices you aren’t currently using and restrict other members from large downloads and gaming during work hours. It’s also a good idea to unplug your router and restart it after a minute or two.

If your router is old or is just the basic option you get from your broadband provider, it’s worth it to upgrade to a fast router with capacity for all devices on your network. These routers are also more secure, protecting your devices.

3. Viruses and malware 

Malicious programs can easily infect your computer and because they run in the background with a very low profile, they can use up your computer’s resources without you realising it. Infected computers will quickly turn sluggish, and you may find that you are getting alerts from your antivirus or strange popups on your computer.

Start by running an anti-virus scan on your device and using the program to remove any recommended files or programs it comes across. You should also set your antivirus to run when you aren’t using the computer (for example, late every night) because this process uses up resources and can also slow your computer when it runs in the background.

Let IT support specialists fix your slow computer

Otto IT is your personal IT department, assisting remote teams and office-based employees with fast, reliable IT support. If your computer is slow, you’re struggling with your internet connection, or you want to make sure you’re implementing good IT security, we can help! Get in touch and see how the right team can make working in a high-tech world that much easier.