You want to speed up your sluggish Windows laptop! Well, I hear you. While I could have always cut this discussion short by enlisting a few strategies, not every point might make sense to you, courtesy of different specifications, nature of storage modules, types of applications residing on the device, and more.
Keeping all these factors and more in mind, I have decided to put together some pointers that would accelerate the internal performances of any given Windows laptop. Most importantly, each of the mentioned strategies is safe to implement and you can try out almost everyone to eventually zero in on the one that makes the most sense to your machine.
However, before you and I move towards the solutions at once, here are some of the reasons that slow down your device, in the first place:
Why is your laptop slower than Usual?
You might have purchased a blazing fast machine a few years back, only to find it crawling now, instead of rushing the tasks to completion.
The commonest reasons for the sluggishness include overburdened RAM, availability of hard disk drive instead of an SSD, not paying heed to Windows updates, excessive CPU overheating that causes throttling issues, deep-seated driver issues, problems created by a virus or malware, overloaded browser, and more.
Now that you are aware of the major reasons that slow down your machine, here are the tried and tested strategies to fix them in no time.
How to Speed up Windows Laptop?
Let’s cut the introductory parts short and jump right to the chase i.e., talking about the 15 vital, tested, and demonstrable strategies to speed up a Windows laptop, in a few clicks:
- Change Power Settings
Wait, how can changing the power plan help with laptop speeds? Well, it can, as using the laptop in the ‘Power Saver’ mode can actually downgrade the overall performance, in an effort to make the battery last longer. Therefore, it is advisable to change the mode to ‘High Performance’ or even ‘Balanced’ to instantly boost up the overall performance and eventually increase the laptop speed.
While I wouldn’t go into the specifics, for now, the cascading effects of changing the power plan are rather self-explanatory. ‘High Performance’ mode is related to amplified processing firepower, which is one of the factors for speeding up a specific app or the entire machine in general. If you have a moderately powerful machine by your side and you need to carry it around with an eye on the battery backup, the ‘Balanced’ mode is still a preferable option.
- Deploy ReadyBoost
If you have a USB drive handy, i.e., at least a USB 2.0 drive, you can plug it into the laptop, and use the ReadyBoost mode to cache hard disk data to the external drive, and eventually allow the applications to fetch data from the same, to load as per user preferences. Kindly note that the USB drive acts as a speedier cache retrieving tool only if your machine has a hard disk instead of an SSD.
- Switch-Off Windows Tricks
Honestly speaking, I haven’t had a lot of faith in the Windows tips. However, they are quite good at slowing down the PC and therefore, need to be turned off at the earliest. To make this minor but effective adjustment, you must head over to the System settings and click on ‘Notifications & Actions’. At this point, you need to uncheck the ‘Tips & Tricks’ box to start feeling the changes, instantly.
- Disable Start-up Programs
Start-up programs put way too much pressure on the PC, more so if it is an entry-level product with 4GB or even 8GB RAM at max. The trick here is to ensure that startup programs are limited so that the computer doesn’t have to go out of its way to manage them immediately after booting up.
For disabling startup programs and applications, you simply need to reach out for the Task Manager by launching it using the Ctrl, Shift, and ESC keys, simultaneously. Once launched, click on more details, and instantly kill off the startup programs that you feel aren’t necessary and helpful enough.
Or you can click on the Startup tab and select manually from the list of services and programs. You can manage any given program by simply selecting the ‘Disable’ tab and ensure that it doesn’t get launched, immediately after the bootup.
- Disable the OneDrive Sync
While some readers will surely get offended by this hack as the OneDrive sync is arguably one of the most functional traits to explore for a Windows user, a slow computer can easily get even slower with this feature turned on. There is no denying the functionality of the OneDrive sync but turning it off permanently can lend some extra strides to your device.
However, you can always turn on the sync at any time, take backups, and turn it off again, without impacting the productivity of the same.
- Access OneDrive On-Demand
As much as OneDrive syncs feel bothersome to a certain flock, there is still a way to make the most of it, without turning off sync and still pushing the laptop speeds to newer highs. The approach here should keep OneDrive as your primary storage module, where you can place files to access anytime, over the cloud. Once the files are stacked into OneDrive, you can remove them from the PC and ensure that the system memory, both RAM and ROM, aren’t used as much, eventually adding to the speeds.
If you access the OneDrive interface, you will be able to manage the settings and preferences, depending on the specific requirements. One of the best strategies here is to open the interface and click on the preferred PC folder whose files you would want to shift to the cloud and select ‘Free up space’ to initiate the process. As the files get stored on the cloud, they get automatically deleted from the device
- Disable Indexing
Search indexing is an automatically active feature that keeps running in the background, instructing the hard disk or even the SSD to help retrieve search data quickly. However, most users do not search for specific files and folders, making indexing just an unnecessary trait that can eventually lower the PC performance, quite significantly. Therefore, it is advisable to type in and hit ‘services. msc’ in the search box of Windows 10 and then scroll down to disable Windows search or Indexing Service, followed by a reboot.
- Clear Registry
Windows actually tracks every aspect of your device, including the file types adhering to the particular program, nature of extensions, program storage details, and a lot more. All these details are stored in the Registry, which can get clogged, thereby slowing down the PC, quite considerably. Also, when you no longer have the program on the device, the Registry can still very well keep the details intact. Therefore, a good way to speed up the Windows laptop is to clean out the registry.
However, you should never even attempt to do it on your own and must use a dedicated ‘Registry Cleaner’ app for the job. Also, it is advisable to have the Registry details backed up to ensure that you always have a record handy.
- Clean out the Storage Space
Over time, the storage module tends to get cluttered with obsolete and temporary files. In this case, you can activate the ‘Storage Sense’ functionality to clear up overall disk space and give a few extra performance-centric pushes to the laptop. Plus, you can even explore the advanced settings to clear out specific recycle bin entities, dormant files in the download folder, and other elements that aren’t as important and are better off deleted.
- Turn-Off Real-Time Device Protection
Windows laptops have an inherent defender ingrained into the software module. As much as this is an effective strategy to keep online and offline threats at bay, progressive scanning takes a toll on the disk speeds. Therefore, you are better off disabling the same, especially if you are having a hard time managing even the most basic tasks on the laptop.
- Troubleshoot Once
If you do not want to go through disabling, deleting, and turning off features at once, you can start off by first scanning the system using the built-in troubleshooter to detect the issues causing slowdowns. Once the performance issues can be detected, you can fix them depending on the resources at hand.
- Add some Virtual Memory
If your machine is a tad low on the RAM count but has ample SSD space and that too NVMe-powered, you can deploy the latter to pack in some virtual memory for managing static tasks and other processes that can do with a slightly slower chunk of system memory.
- Upgrade RAM
If you aren’t privy to adding virtual memory and the concerned laptop has an upgradable RAM slot in play, you can readily upgrade the same by purchasing device-relevant options and adding them under expert supervision.