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Why Computers Run Slow and Tips to Speed Them Up

That new computer runs great when it is just out of the box. It then begins to slow down as time goes by. There are definite causes to slowdowns with very few of them requiring scrapping the computer and getting a new one. There are simple fixes for slow computers that get them performing like new again.

Causes of Computer Slowdowns

Viruses, malware, trojans and adware abound, and all are easily capable of slowing computers down. Computer viruses are designed to use infected computers to spread to other ones. They also cause anything from slowdowns to complete irrevocable data loss. Malware contains malicious code often designed to steal personal information or cause system harm.

slow computer

Trojan horse programs pose as something else or piggyback on something legitimate. They replicate, cause harm, and steal data. Adware does not steal things such as credit card numbers, but it does monitor everything from searches to emails in order to pop up ads it thinks computer users would be interested in. Any of these can slow a system down.

Hardware issues such as not enough Random Access Memory (RAM) and a highly fragmented hard drive can cause slowdowns. Also, software on computers that is not updated and browsers bloated with huge caches and cookies also cause slowdowns.

Fixing Computer Slowdowns

The number one critical software every computer needs is antivirus software. Most antivirus programs are offered as a suite of programs that monitor all online activity for threats. Often, a separate anti-malware program is needed when it is suspected this type of software is already at the root of the slowdown. Typically, good antivirus software installed on a clean system will detect and eliminate viral, malware, trojan and even adware threats. Check out these reviews by TopTenReviews.

The RAM in computers is the active place when users are doing anything from looking at web pages to editing family photos. It holds the active digital information being manipulated. If there is not enough, a portion of the data in the RAM is offloaded to the mechanical hard drive. RAM is super-fast, which gives instant access to data. Hard drives need to search for, locate and retrieve every bit of data. This is comparatively a much slower process. Maxing out the RAM on computers gives a huge boost in speed.

Highly fragmented hard drives are like filing systems gone wrong. Imagine someone in a huge room of filing cabinets. The person finds a needed file only to discover that half of it is missing. The rest is across the large room in another filing cabinet buried deep in the back of a drawer. After going there to retrieve the rest, the person finds a note that another piece of the file is somewhere else. This is what fragmentation does to hard drives. Defragmenting puts files together for faster retrieval.

Routine maintenance of bits of data such as temporary files, cookies and caches speed things up as well. Files associated with browsing the Internet and other processes need maintained and updated. A major source of computer slowdowns comes from software that has not been updated to newer versions. Outdated software is open for exploitation from hackers. Not routinely clearing out the detritus that accumulates as a result of normal computing activities also creates slowdowns. System utility software manages all of this making computers fresh and ready to go each and every day.

Most of the issues that cause computers to begin to act sluggishly are quickly corrected by updating software, installing good antivirus software, adding to the RAM memory and defragmenting hard drives. Installation of quality system utility software that cleans out the buildup of junk files on a daily basis also contributes to healthy computers.

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