Is your system slow and prone to crashing? Increase the speed and productivity of your PC with these 10 quick and easy tips.

 

1. Don't Run Too Many Programs at Once

It's sometimes easy to forget how many programs you have open. If you find that your PC is becoming sluggish, check the Windows taskbar to see which programs are running. To speed things up, simply right-click those program you are not using and click close.

 

2. Restart More Quickly

When restarting your PC hold down the Shift key at the same time. This launches Windows much more quickly.

 

3. Lower the Screen Resolution

This is simple to do. Right-click on the Desktop and select Properties. Then click Settings in the Properties window and move the pointer in Screen Area (Screen Resolution) to the left to lower the screen resolution. It's easy to change the resolution back afterwards. See how it's done

 

4. Turn Off Active Desktop

In theory, having a favourite website sit directly on your desktop is cool. In reality it is a huge hog on your PC's resources, so turn it off and feel the difference. You can always make that website your home page anyway!

 

5. Don't Stretch That Wallpaper

Stretching wallpaper to fit the desktop can actually slow down your PC, especially when you move icons around. And if your PC has limited memory it's better to choose fairly simple wallpaper - for example, black and white photos rather than colour.

 

6. Don't Have Too Many Fonts

Windows loads every font you have in the Fonts folder when it starts up. The more you have, the longer it takes. So take a look in your Fonts folder and keep only those you really like and use. However, be careful not to remove fonts that have a red-letter icon, as these are System fonts.

 

7. Use Disk Cleanup

Windows has a built-in tool called Disk Cleanup, which is a bit like your own personal Windows housekeeper. To find it go to Start Menu, Programs, Accessories and then Disk Cleanup. It will then ask you which drive you wish to clean up - usually the C drive. Once open it will analyse your hard disk and tell you how much space can be saved on the disk by safely deleting old files. The less cluttered your hard disk, the faster the PC will run.

 

8. Back Up Your Data

Another really simple way to lose clutter and speed things up is to transfer old data and files to an external storage device, such as a Flash Drive or burn to CD/DVD. This also has the advantage of safeguarding your data if your PC breaks down.

 

9. Use the Defragmenter Tool

As you use your PC, loading programs and creating files, Windows tends to be a bit lazy as to where it puts files after you have finished. In other words, files get fragmented and it takes longer for the PC to find the files you need the next time. To clean things up, locate the Windows Disk Defragmenter Tool from the Program/Accessories tab on the Start menu. Open the Disk Defragmenter and let it automatically put all the files and programs back in proper order. Afterwards, you should notice a significant increase in the speed of your PC.

 

10. Clean Up Your Desktop

It's tempting to use your desktop as a general dumping ground for downloads, often-used files and programs. However, having too much on there not only makes it hard to find but can slow things down. Instead spend a few minutes each week tidying up and deleting files that you are not using. Put those files you need into a special folder on your hard drive and leave only a minimum. You will also be able to see that nice wallpaper you downloaded more clearly!