What is slowing down your computer?

There are a lot of "Fix My PC" products available on-line, downloadable for "just a few bucks". But what do these products do? and what if the slow-ness is caused by a broken harddisk, a bad video driver or an intermittent internet connection?

Most of the "Fix My PC" products claim to clean-up the windows registry and magically speed up your PC – bogus claims, in most cases...

So, what needs to be 'really' done?

Clear out the dust

Dirty cooling elementDust builds up over time, it impedes airflow, and airflow is vital for keeping system temperatures down. If your system overheats, it'll likely throttle its performance down to cope.
Worst case scenario, your computer shuts down without warning.
Compressed air and a vacuum, at least once a year, is all it takes.

Check NIC, videocard, RAM and hard drive

There's every chance that your hardware may not be performing to spec, whether through some kind of fault or mere age. Make sure you have the latest drivers for your version of Operating system.

Uninstall everything you don't use

No, really, everything; browser toolbars, programs you forgot about, games you didn't finish. See that system tray in the bottom right stuffed to the gills? Thin it down. - Then defrag the harddisk (but only once every 6 months...)

Get a faster antivirus program

Or remove it completely... we run many of our customers without additional anti-virus software...
A bold action? Maybe, but keeping your computer up-to-date and installing Microsoft Security Essentials does work just as well – if not better – the best anti-virus is still the user.
For additional protection we recommend a lesser known anti-virus, the big names (Norton, McAfee etc) are targets for virus writers.

Update, update, update & update

Not only install the monthly Windows updates (2nd Tuesday of the month) but also check for Java, Adobe Flash, Acrobat Reader etc. on a regular basis.

Upgrade hardware individually

A hardware part is the bottleneck in your system? A simple upgrade will be much cheaper than getting a whole new system. Options are RAM, video-card, hard drive and network card.

Re-install the Operating system

If all else fails, back up all your files, format your hard drive and then reinstall Windows from scratch. While modern operating systems reduce the frequency in which this is needed (XP was every 3-4 years), sometimes it's just the only sane way to return things back to how snappy they once were. Plan out at least a day, triple check everything is backed up, make sure you have license keys, passwords and installation software for your programs (Office, QuickBooks, e-mail passwords...)

Be realistic

A 1970's Chrysler Cordoba does not run as smooth as this years Honda Accord. There are differences between a $600 and a $ 1,300 computer. No matter what you do, you cannot make an affordable family car go faster than a Lamborghini. When it is time for a new computer – consider your options – the $600 weekly special at a brick-and-mortar store might not be the best choice in the long run.

Computer challenged?

Bring your computer to us and get a free 15 minute evaluation of your current system.
Call 403-478-6382 for an appointment.

References

I just wanted you to know how impressed my staff and I have been with your excellent service. You were able to develop a complete computer system fine tuned to our specific hospital needs.

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