Latest Tech Tip & News

TECH TIP: Tuning up your PC

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You take your car in for regular oil changes. You trim and re-pot your houseplants. You replace the batteries in your smoke alarm every six months. But when it comes to technology, many of us avoid doing any preventative maintenance, and simply accept performance levels far below what our machines are capable of. And the difference in speed can be impressive. Microsoft, for example, has estimated that removing bloatware improves Windows 7 notebook performance by 39%.

Removing bloatware: Bloatware is any unnecessary and often obtrusive program that comes pre-loaded on many consumer PCs, or that gets added during the installation of legitimate software. These unwanted programs often increase boot time, waste memory, and clutter up your system tray, desktop, and context menus.

Update the OS and programs: This tip is especially important for new purchases. It may have been months since the computer was last updated at the factory, so check for updates, especially the first time you turn the machine on. Keeping the operating system (OS), drivers, and programs up to date is key to maintaining smooth performance.

Virus Scans: Besides being serious security threats, malware and other viruses can also be resource hogs, using your hard drive, random-access memory (RAM), and internet connection without you being aware.

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Upgrade your system: When many users consider upgrading their computer to improve performance, their first thought is often adding more RAM. If you’re currently using most or all of your RAM, then adding more will provide a noticeable boost. If, however, you’re not regularly using all of your current memory, adding more may make little difference to your computer’s performance. Search for Resource Monitor in the Windows search box to find out how much of your system’s resources you’re currently using. However, even if you’re not using all your current resources, switching from a traditional hard drive to an SSD can provide a significant speed boost.

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