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Why Your Computer is Slow Cheat Sheet (DRAFT) by [deleted]

Why Your Computer is Slow

This is a draft cheat sheet. It is a work in progress and is not finished yet.


Whether you use a PC or Mac, everyone’s computer slows down eventu­ally. Here are a 10 possible reasons your machine isn’t running as fast as it used to, and how you can fix the problem.

1. Too much in the trash bin.

You can never undere­stimate how important it is to take out the trash. When you delete files, they aren’t immedi­ately wiped from your hard drive. It puts them in holding area of the hard drive. They are left there and not deleted so that they can be restored, just in case they were deleted by mistake.

Always want to check the contents for anything important before you empty it. Emptying your recycle bin can speed up the computer's perfor­mance and add room to your hard drive.

2. A dirty desktop

A cluttered desktop makes things disorg­anized and hard to find, but it can also slow computers down. The purpose of the desktop is to be intera­ctive, not to store files. Its job is makes it easy for you to navigate your computer and give you inform­ation.

If you have a large amount of files on your desktop, it is slowing down your computer. Those files need to be reorga­nized in your other folders. If you have multiple widgets running on your desktop or dashboard, they could be slowing your computer down also.

3. Too much in Cache

Caches helps make things faster and easier to get to, but too much in your cache could be slowing your computer down. The same goes for temporary Internet files.

If you do a lot of web browsing, this is probably the main reason your computer is slow. In Windows, close all the Internet browsers, open up “Internet Options” and click delete in the “Browsing History” section.

4. Old software

Keeping your computer updated could be a greater part of its health than you think. When companies update the software, this software is meant to work better with your operating system.

You want to make sure your hardware, your operating system, and your software are all on the same page. Sometimes new updates have bug fixes that can improve the overall operating speed of your computer.

5. Too many programs

Unneeded programs may be slowing your computer down. Take a look at how many programs you use and how often you use them. The more programs you have, the more connec­tions they make to your OS, and the more it bogs down your computer.

When you remove them, make sure they are fully uninst­alled. Applic­ation leftovers can use up a lot of space and slow your system down. If you have a Mac, “AppCl­eaner” is a great applic­ation to make sure you have all the corres­ponding files deleted.

6. Too little space

Because of the way “Virtual Memory” works, RAM files get swapped out onto the hard disk. If the hard disk doesn’t have very much space, it will slow the process down. If your computer has less than 10 percent of the total hard drive space free, it will begin to slow down.

7. Too many fragments

Fragmented data can cause the read/write function of your hard drive to slow down. Set up a schedule to defragment your hard disk regularly. In Mac OS X, it is also helpful to verify and repair the disk and disk permis­sions.

8. RAM

A computer’s RAM makes all the difference in the world. It can determine a great deal regarding the speed of your computer. If you have made other improv­ements to speed up your computer and it doesn’t seem to make a differ­ence, your RAM may be the problem.

First, try resetting it. On a Mac, hold down comman­d-o­pti­on-P-R right after it’s powered on. It should go black and restart normally, but a whole lot faster. Windows users will have to download a program like “RAM Def 2.6 Xtreme” to reset your RAM.

If resetting it doesn’t work, you will need to buy more RAM. Check with the machine’s manufa­cturer and the tech specs to make sure what you intend to get is compatible with your machine.

9. Bad fonts

Not all fonts are good. Fonts downloaded from the web could be fine, but some are bad. Font errors can slow down your computer. Make sure all of your fonts are valid, as some of them may be harming your computer.

10. Too many processes

Computers can slow down from low CPU perfor­mance. Check what processes are running, as some of them may not be needed. Editing the startup items can also speed up your computer