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Fixing your very slow PC - step by step

6. Defragment hard drive - Auslogics Disk Defrag - [Download]

Skip this step if your computer uses Solid State Drive (SSD) instead of Hard Drive (HDD).
De-fragmenting will relocate pieces of information and place them in "better" areas to make it easier for Hard Drive to access them. It will optimize the performance and reduce the physical load on the drive. Keep in mind that defragmenting does NOT move your personal files from one folder to another. The only difference you will notice is a performance improvement. Windows 7/8 does a fine job with keeping the drive defragmented but I recommend using 3rd party programs for this. Use Auslogics Disk Defrag once a week if your operating system is Windows XP, or once a month if you have a newer OS. Install the program by using the settings shown in the video.

7. Disk Check Utility

Disk Check will scan, find and fix bad sectors and cluster problems in your Hard Drive. You should manually restart the computer after scheduling a Disk Check task. When your computer restarts, do not touch any keyboard or mouse buttons. You will not be able to use your computer for up to an hour.

8. Slow hardware ?

Some modern programs can be very resource demanding. If your computer is more than 5 years old, it might not have enough RAM or CPU power to properly handle multitasking. Few years ago 2GB of RAM was considered plenty. Today, I recommend at least 4GB RAM and 2nd generation processor. Many users multitask without realizing. Popular programs like Skype, Spotify, Antivirus, backup software and many others run on the background and consume resources. Even if you're currently using only internet browser you might still have dozens of processes running on the background. Using heavy software like Adobe Photoshop or video editing programs requires even more resources.
Let's check few details about your computer. Go to Start right click on Computer and choose Properties. It will open a window which contains information about the amount of RAM and CPU model. I recommend upgrading to 4GB RAM if you currently have 2GB or less. Upgrading the CPU will be very costly and your selection will be small, so if your CPU is old it is best to buy a new computer.Check our computer buying tips here.
Sometimes you can have enough RAM,CPU power and clean operating system but the PC might still appear slow. This could indicate a physical hardware malfunction. A failing Hard Drive is the most commont hardware issue that causes noticeable slowdowns. This is why it is so important to backup your personal files regularly and save them on an external drive or USB flash drive. If you're an advanced user, you can run HDTune diagnostics software to check hard drive's health but the tool is not free, therefor, I will not cover it in this tutorial.

9. Internet Browser & Extensions

Browsers are not created equally. Some of them feel faster than others. I recommend Google Chrome as your main internet browser because of its speed, extension support and security.
Choosing your browser extensions(add-ons) wisely is also important. Using heavy extensions that visually alter websites to block ads and other parts of the site will consume hundreds of Megabytes of more RAM and make the browser slow and less responsive.

Remove Google Chrome Extensions:
Click on settings Chrome Settings Button button on top-right corner. Select More Tools > Extensions. Remove heavy extensions that block ads and scripts on websites.

Remove Firefox Addons:
Open Firefox and press Alt to open the Menu Bar. The horizontal menu bar will appear on top-left corner. Press Tools > Add-ons and remove heavy add-ons or add-ons you no longer use. Firefox will become very slow if you install too many add-ons, especially the ones that block advertisements.

10. Repair Install

If you've tried everything above and your PC is still slow then I recommend a Repair Install. All the changes made to the core operating system files will be erased. Repair Install will reinstall the system files but it will keep your personal files and programs.Your pictures, music, videos and programs will remain untouched.
You will need your Windows 7 operating system disc. The following video demonstrates how to do a Repair Install for Windows 7. The process will last up to an hour. Once it begins, sit back and do not press any keys. It will restart by itself several times. Do not touch the keyboard during this process. Once it's done, it will ask you to choose the preferred language,time zone etc. After that, you'll be taken to your regular desktop screen.

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