Optimization Tools and Tutorials!

Check your computer for adware and viruses. That is probably the biggest problem that slows computers down. No matter what operating system you run, make sure your system is fully patched and up-to-date. If you are running Windows XP and do not have SP2 installed, you need to upgrade immedietely. SP3 is out for Windows XP and that is preferrably what you should have installed.

You should have both an antivirus program and an adware program installed on your computer, and scan it regularly. We have suggestions for both of those on our site.

Check your available disk space and delete old files. Click My Computer, and then click on your hard drive, it will probably be the "C" Drive or Local Disc. You should preferrably have more than a dozen GB's left. If it tells you something like you are in the Megabytes left, use the Window's disk clean up tool to start. If you are a regular user of your recycle bin, make sure you don't need anything in there and empty it out.

Delete your Temporary Internet files, Remove old program files you have downloaded, Delete Windows Temporary Files, and don't forget to uninstall old software programs you do not use anymore from the Add/Remove section of your control panel.

The easiest way to remove most of those items is by using Microsoft's built in disk clean up tool. If you are still looking at your hard drive space, just right click on the hard drive, and click "Disk Cleanup"

I recommend against checking the box in the disk cleanup that says compress old files. This does not actually delete anything, it compresses files that have not been used on your computer for a certain period of time. They are still available, but if you access them, the computer will feel slower because it has to decompress those files before they can be accessed.

Remember to Defragment your computer. Especially if you just cleaned up your hard drive and have just deleted a bunch of files. A thorough defrah of your computer will increase access times to files, and will boost the overall performance of your machine. A similar but different, and equally important function is a scandisk. Go to the Defrag and Scandisk page to learn more.

Now, as soon as I say this, I know I am going to get some OMG that is so simple why are you even saying it? But, it needs to be said

Reboot your computer...

It's good to reboot your computer every once in a while. If you are the type of person that leaves your computer on all of the time, this is a very good idea to practive at the very most weekly. Windows has a tendency to slow down as programs are used and more information is stored into the memory and not completely cleared when the program is closed. By restarting your computer, you help it reset its memory and system state.

This is something largely overlooked and can be one of the greatest things done to speed up your computer. When having computer problems, one of the easiest things to do to fix it, is a simple restart of your computer.

Other Optimization techniques

This is lengthy enough, and enough tutorials and links to keep most users pretty busy. Check out these additional articles on firewalls, Old Network Connections, and XP Visual Effects.

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