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8 Proven Methods To Speed Up Your Laptop In 5 Minutes or Less

Your laptop is one of the most important tools you own. It helps you stay connected with friends and family, keeps you organized, and lets you work from anywhere. But like all machines, it can slow down over time. If your laptop feels sluggish and unresponsive, don’t worry – there are ways to speed it up. Here are eight methods that have been proven to work.

1) Turn your computer off when you're done using it for the day

This is an easy tip for you to speed up your laptop. Personally, I'm guilty of never turning off my laptop. However, when my main laptop started to be sluggish a few months back I saw that restarting it made a world of difference in terms of performance.

Specifically, when you've turned your laptop off and then on again you've effectively cleared the RAM. This means your computer has to load everything up again when you turn it on, which can lead to faster performance overall.

2) Uninstall unused programs

If you're like most people, you've probably installed a lot of programs that you don't even use anymore. These programs can take up valuable space on your hard drive and can slow down your computer. 

To speed up your laptop, take a few minutes to uninstall any programs that you don't use. You can do this by going to Control Panel > Programs and Features.

3) Delete temporary files

Another way to speed up your laptop is to delete temporary files. These are files that are created when you use programs or surf the web. Over time, these files can start to take up a lot of space on your hard drive which can, in turn, hinder the speed of your laptop. To delete temporary files, you can use a program like CCleaner.

If you don't want to use another program then we can quickly walk you through the process. All you need to do is type "disk cleanup" on the search box located on the taskbar. 

Following that you should select the drive you want to clean up and press "Ok". Under "Files to delete" you should select the file types you would like to delete. Once selected click "ok". 

4) Defragment your hard drive (only for Windows computers using an HDD)

If you've been using your laptop for a while, it's likely that your hard drive is starting to become fragmented. This means that the files on your hard drive are scattered around in bits and pieces, which can make it harder for your computer to access them. 

When you defragment your hard drive you're effectively reorganizing the files so that they're all stored in one place. This can give your laptop a significant speed boost because it's easier for your computer to access the files it needs. 

You can defragment your hard drive by going to Start > All Programs > Accessories > System Tools > Disk Defragmentation.

An easier way to do this is to simply type "defrag" on the search box in the bottom left of your Windows Computer.

It should be noted that defragmenting your hard drive is only for hard drives, as the name suggests. If your laptop features an SSD storage unit, like most laptops released in the last 4 years then this tip probably does not apply.

Additionally, if you're using a Mac, you also don't need to defrag. Macs use the AFPS system which defrags files automatically as they're being saved. 

5) Stop Programs Running on Startup

When you start up your laptop, there are usually a bunch of programs that start running in the background. This can include your email program, your anti-virus software, and other programs that you might not even be aware of. 

While some of these programs are necessary and can't - or shouldn't - be disabled, others might not be doing anything other than slowing down your laptop. 

To speed up your laptop, take a look at the programs that are set to run on startup and disable the ones that you don't need.

To disable these programs do a right click on the taskbar and find the Task Manager. Head over to the Startup tab and you'll have a clear picture of the programs that start loading when you boot up your laptop.

Go through them and, if you can, select those with a high impact on performance. However, also consider the fact that some of these programs are necessary for Windows to operate so you don't want to stop those from running. 

To know which ones are critical to Windows you can check the name of the Publisher. If Microsoft is the publisher then those are better left alone

6) Restart Your Browser

This one is more for those using Chrome as their primary browser, however, it can be applied to other browsers as well. If you find that your laptop is starting to slow down, one of the first things you should do is restart your browser to speed up your laptop.

Restarting your browser may be enough to solve the issue. However, if your pages start to load very slowly you might want to use an ad blocker. Additionally, you should make sure that you're browser is updated to the latest version.

7) Check out for malware

Malware stands for malicious software, and it's a term used to describe programs that intend to negatively impact your computer

Malware can significantly slow down your laptop. Not only will it take up valuable resources but it might also send out information about you without you realizing it. 

Having an antivirus can help you detect and remove malware. There are several free options, such as Avira Free Security, a program that scans your laptop and removes malicious software.

There's also a slew of paid options that are also worth considering if you believe this is the reason behind your laptop being slow. 

8) Upgrade the hardware

Finally,  if you've tried all of the tips above and your laptop is still slow, then it might be time to upgrade your hardware. This usually means upgrading the RAM and maybe even upgrading the storage unit.

Performing a RAM upgrade is a process that will hardly take you more than five minutes and will have a significant impact on your laptop's day-to-day performance. 

If you're not one to coddle your laptop and you don't want to jump through all the hoops we mentioned before to get a speedier laptop then this is likely your best bet.

You Might Like => CPU vs. RAM: What's More Important?

RAM is the easiest upgrade, you just need to find out how much RAM your laptop can take, and then see what modules it uses as well as the available slots. This information is typically available on the manufacturer's site or on Crucial's website. 

As far as the upgrade is concerned, here at 9to5gadgets, we've published a wide range of RAM upgrade tutorials, so there's a solid chance that your laptop model or your laptop series is within one of these tutorials. 

When it comes to the SSD unit, the same principles apply as with the RAM upgrade. In that regard, you need to check the maximum capacity for storage your laptop has, if it features an extra PCIe slot or a SATA slot, or if you're going to need to perform a full migration.

Having said that, we would start off with the RAM upgrade and see how things go from there. If you still don't see a bump in performance you would be wise to perform an SSD upgrade.

There you have it, eight methods that should help you speed up your laptop. No matter the reason behind its slowdown, we're confident that at least one of these tips will help you get your speedy laptop back.