Have you noticed that your computer or laptop has started to slow down? This is not a reason to immediately change it for a new one. After all, there are ways, thanks to which your device will start to "fly" again. That's what we will talk about next.
How to improve the performance of Windows PC
If you have a PC with the operating system (OS) Windows 10, we advise you to use the following methods to speed up the performance of your device.
Prevent programs from starting automatically
As soon as your computer is switched on, various programs are launched. Working in the background, they slow down the system performance. But automatic launch of programs at PC startup can be cancelled. To do this, you need to:
- Open "Task Manager" by pressing the key combination Ctrl + Alt + Del or Ctrl + Shift + Esc.
- Click on "Autoloading".
- Select the non-system programs you don't need from the list and switch them off. To check if the non-system programme you are about to uninstall is a non-system programme, just type its name into Google.
Disable special effects and interface toning
Turning off unnecessary visual effects can help speed up your computer. First of all, this applies to the transparency of the taskbar, Start menu and Update Centre. Transparency is turned off by clicking "Start" — "Options" — "Personalisation" — "Colours", after which you should select "Off" against "Transparency effects".
We also advise you to switch off unnecessary animations and special effects. This can be done as follows:
- Open "Control Panel".
- Click on "System and Security" — "System" — "Advanced System Settings" — "Options" — "Visual Effects".
- Click on "Provide better performance" and select only the special effects you want.
Perform bug fixes
Windows 10 has a standard tool that looks for bugs that may be slowing down your system and helps you eliminate them. To use this tool, you need to:
- Right-click on "Start".
- Select "Control Panel" — "Troubleshooting."
- Under the "System and Security" section, click on "Troubleshooting".
- In the window that appears, run the scan from any section.
Install the latest Windows updates and device drivers
To check for Windows 10 system updates and install them, you need to follow the steps below:
- Click "Start".
- Select "Settings" — "Update and Security" — "Windows Update Centre".
- Select "Check for updates." If the message "Available updates" appears on the screen, you need to click "Install now".
- Once the updates are installed, you just need to restart your computer.
In case of failure, it is advisable to create a system restore point before installing drivers.
Perform defragmentation of the hard drive
As a result of uninstalling various programs, overwriting and other actions, many fragmented files accumulate on the PC hard drive. They are scattered on the drive and each of them occupies small areas. When the hard drive accesses them, it wastes time, which often causes the computer to slow down.
To speed up the system, file defragmentation is a procedure that groups programmes and fragmented files in such a way that they are as close to each other and as far away from the software as possible. This prevents the hard disc from wasting time on them.
To defragment a hard disc you should:
- Double left click on the "My Computer" shortcut.
- From the list of drives, select the system drive (usually C) by right-clicking.
- Click on "Properties" in the context menu.
- Go to "Tools" in the window that opens.
- Click on "Perform defragmentation".
Check your PC for viruses
The presence of viruses and malware negatively affects the performance of Windows 10. To protect against them, you should use special antivirus software or use the built-in Windows Defender.
By default, Windows 10 monitors certain user activities and sends reports to Microsoft, which can consume system resources and slow down your workflow. To disable tracking, go to System Preferences, select General, and turn off the first three features.
Clean up your hard disc
If the free space on your hard disc is less than 10% of the total volume, you should clean it up and delete or move unnecessary items from the Downloads, Pictures, Documents, Music and Desktop folders.
If you have large programs or games installed on your system disc, you can reinstall them on another disc to free up space.
Switch off notifications from browsers and apps
Are you also annoyed by unnecessary notifications? Did you know that they also burden your system? That's why it's best to switch them off.
Depending on the type of browser you are using, the process of disabling notifications will be different. For example, for Chrome, the step-by-step procedure is as follows:
- Open Chrome.
- At the top right, click the menu icon (three vertically arranged dots) - "Settings".
- Select "Privacy and Security" — "Site Settings" — "Notifications".
- Tick the checkbox next to "Prevent sites from sending notifications" and click "Add".
- Enter the website address.
- Click "Add".
You can find instructions on how to disable notifications in other browsers on the Internet.
Disable cloud synchronisation
Turning off Microsoft OneDrive cloud storage for a while can help Windows 10 boot faster and perform better.
You can improve PC performance without installing additional memory modules by using ReadyBoost, a Microsoft software technology that allows you to use removable media (such as a USB flash memory device).
Restore your computer
Recent system changes (application or driver installation, Windows update) can also slow down your computer. But you can undo them by using the "System Restore" function. As a result, applications or drivers installed after creating the last restore point will be deleted, but personal files will not be destroyed.
By taking advantage of the above methods of Windows 10 acceleration, you will be able to significantly speed up your PC.
How to improve PC performance with Ubuntu OS
Now we tell you in what ways you can increase the speed of your computer that runs on Ubuntu, the most popular Linux distribution.
Choose a good file system or FS
In case you are using NTFS (New Technology File System) drive on Linux, you should not format the drive. It is better to use ext4 file system. But if you want to access NTFS from Windows, you can format the / Home partition to NTFS.
Create multiple partitions
You can create many partitions, but the optimal number of partitions is three:
- The /root (root) partition. This partition will contain the OS and any changes you have made that are not personal (for example, the system and any packages you download). And the personal data will be in the next partition.
- The /home partition. All your personal documents and settings will be stored in this partition. And no matter how many times you reinstall the system, the data here will be unchanged.
- The /swap partition. This is where RAM (RAM) temporarily stores information that you don't use. There is no single opinion about the size of this partition. Some experts believe that it should be equal to the size of the RAM of your device. Others think that the size of the /Exchange partition should be 1 GB larger than the RAM. And some believe that it should be twice the size of the RAM.
Swappiness is a Linux kernel parameter that determines at what point the OS starts to invoke a SWAP file or SWAP partition.
If there is plenty of free RAM, SWAP is not used. As the memory load increases, the fraction of operations that require OP increases. And then operations start to be performed at the expense of SWAP.
The possible vm.swappiness options range from 0 to 100 inclusive. In Ubuntu, the default value is 60.
Enable write-back cache for a hard disc drive
The write-back cache feature is available on most hard disc drives. It allows them to collect information about their cache memory before it is finally written. The data collected in a certain amount is transferred and stored at the same time. As a result, the number of writes is reduced, which improves write speeds.
To find out if your hard drive is active, you need to open a terminal and write the command sudo hdparm -W /dev/sda.
To deactivate a disc after it has been activated, you need to write sudo hdparm -W0 /dev/sda.
Use tools like BleachBit
BleachBit is a free program designed to clean your disk, manage your privacy and optimise your computer system. It will help you clean your PC from cache, cookies and temporary files, browsing and download histories, chat and settings logs, invalid shortcuts, as well as files from Google Chrome, Adobe Reader, Firefox, OpenOffice and many other programs.
Manage TRIM when using an SSD drive
If your hard drive is an SSD, managing TRIM, an ATA (Advanced Technology Attachment) interface command, can help optimise its performance. One way to do this is to open a terminal and type the command fstream.
Choose a Linux distribution that runs well on your PC
For some it may be the standard Ubuntu, for some it may be Kubuntu, which can run alongside Ubuntu, for some it may be Ubuntu MATE. For comparison, try different Linux distro options and use the one that suits you.
Wondering how you improve the performance of your PC or laptop? Perhaps you have something to add to our list of ways.