It can be said that Windows 10 is the most efficient encrypted Microsoft operating system, but it also contains many features that require large amounts of system resources. On the plus side, the latest Windows iteration also has embedded features that are extremely useful for improving overall performance.
If you think that your PC performance is slow, there are a large number of common suspects, including malicious software, temporary files, and less powerful hardware.
In this guide we will explore the ten best ways to accelerate Windows 10, including defragging, removing unwanted programs, disabling unwanted special effects, and even upgrading hardware.
1. Restart the computer
Although this may seem like an obvious step, many users have been using their machines for weeks now. Windows 10 will automatically shut down the screen, but will resume any previous programs you are running. These can accumulate over time and make your computer run very slowly.
You can solve this problem by turning off your computer every day after you’ve finished using it, clicking the Windows button, and choosing “Power” button.
Be sure to close all running programs and save your work before doing so. If the computer is slow that it can no longer display the Windows menu, press and hold the power button until the computer turns off.
2. Update your Windows
Microsoft continuously updates Windows 10 in order to address common errors that weigh down system performance. Some of them are quite small, while others make significant changes to your system, increasing efficiency.
If your computer is lagging, open the Windows menu and type “Update” in the search bar and click “Check for Updates” to get inside the settings.
If a significant update is available, be sure to back up and back up your personal data before proceeding. You may need to restart the computer to apply any available updates. If it’s been a while you updated it, click ‘Check updates’ again after restarting to make sure there is no more availability.
3. Check the startup applications
Computers may bog down because of the large number of processes being performed. This is because many installers will ask Windows to launch their programs right after logging in, which slows down the system.
To check your startup programs, open the Task Manager (Ctrl + Alt + Del), and then click the “Start” tab. Pay special attention to the value of boot loads for each program, e.g. “High” because this is a nice way to detect applications that could slow down your system.
To prevent running a program at login, just right-click and select “Disable”.
4. Delete unused software
Many computer vendors ship their PC with third-party software, which are sometimes called “Bloatware” because of their large size and useless nature. Many PC users also install software for a particular purpose and never use it, for example, designing a newsletter.
Redundant programs occupy space on your hard drive and reduce performance. To check for installed applications, go to “Control Panel”> “Programs”> “Programs and Features”> “Uninstall Program”.
Right-click any program you no longer need and choose “Uninstall”. Windows 10 will request permission for changes in your system. Click “Yes” to continue.
5. Disable Special Effects
Windows 10 is quite heavy when it comes to special effects. Windows and other features by default are programmed to fade in and out. Other features of intense but unnecessary use include translucency and animations.
If you want to take your computer to the basics, open the Windows menu and search for “System”, and then go to the “Advanced setting” tab and select “Performance settings.”
In the “Visual Effects” tab, Click the “Customize” button, and then you can turn off the boxes next to the visual effects to disable them. Click Apply to confirm.
7. Cleanup the disc
Disk Cleanup is an extremely integrated Windows utility. You can use it to delete temporary files that are accumulating on your device, such as thumbnail images, downloaded program files, and offline web pages.
Click the Windows menu and type “Disk Cleanup” in the search bar to get started. The utility provides you with a choice to delete files. Simply check the box next to each option. Click “Clean System Files” to get started. Disk Cleanup’ll calculate the amount of space you can save.
It is also a good opportunity to remove any files you no longer need from the hard drive. The easiest place to start is your “Downloads” folder.
7. Disable the Transparency Effects
In addition to using large system resources to display features such as animation, Windows 10 also uses transparency effects for specific features like as a task menu. This seemingly simple and lightweight effect is actually very complicated to draw because the system has to calculate the same plane twice.
To turn off the transparency effects, open the Windows menu and type “Make Start, taskbar, and Action Center transparent”. This will turn on the “Color” setting. From here you can disable transparency.
You can also change the default application mode between “Light” and “Dark”. This will not affect the speed of your system, but will make it easier to use.
8. RAM Upgrade
The overall speed of your computer can be greatly enhanced by increasing the amount of virtual memory (RAM). Windows 10 requires a minimum of 4 GB for smooth run, though it does not take into account applications that use a lot of resources, such as video games.
The simplest solution is to install more RAM. Your computer has more RAM where you can insert chips. To know the type of memory your device uses, open the Task Manager (Ctrl + Alt + Del) and click “Performance”. The system will show the memory used, as well as the type of use, for example, DDR4.
Installing new RAM chips is very simple. If you want to do it on your own, use an anti-static strap for the wrists to prevent damage to delicate parts. Alternatively, many computer repair services will gladly upgrade your equipment for you for a little fee.
9. Use SSD
Solid State Drives (SSD) use the flash memory of the same kind as the USB Flash Drives. They allow much faster access and write times than traditional hard disk drives that use magnetized disks.
SSDs cost much more than per GB than the regular hard drives, but if you are willing to pay, you will notice noticeable improvements when booting, in file access time, and overall system response capability.
If you want to purchase a SSD and install it yourself, make sure you have the appropriate computer size (2.5 “for portable devices, 3.5” for desktops). You can use free software like Clonezilla to copy the contents of your current hard disk to a new SSD.
10. Run System Maintenance
There is a built-in utility in Windows 10 that performs common system maintenance tasks, like defragmenting the hard drive, updating and scanning malicious software.
These tasks are typically performed in the background when your computer is idle, but if you notice system performance problems, you can manually run it if you want.
To start, open the Control Panel, choose “System and Security” and select “Security and Maintenance”. Click the arrow for more maintenance options. From here you can choose “Start maintenance”. Make sure you close and save any open files before you do this.