"Why is my laptop so slow?" This question has got to be one of the most frequently asked questions among computer users.
We've all been there. You wake up one morning enthusiastic about completing your assignments or work-related tasks, only to realize it will take you longer than you thought because your computer is too slow.
Yet what do you do in such a situation?
If you're like me, your first attempt to fixing your slow laptop will be to restart it. However, don't be frustrated if this doesn't work.
In most cases, the only way to fix a slow computer is to deal with the root cause of the problem. And many things can cause your computer to take forever to complete even the simplest tasks. The first step is identifying the problem.,
What's Causing Your Computer To Be Too Slow And How To Fix It
If you're asking, "why is my laptop so slow?" you've probably tried some quick-fix solutions without any luck. Maybe you've already started worrying that you will have to get a new laptop if the one you have doesn't begin working normal soon.
But a "why is my laptop so slow" question is in most cases, not that serious:
Once you've figured out why your computer is slow, it will only take a few minutes to fix it depending on the underlying cause, and you will be using your laptop again within no time.
We've shared eight reasons why your computer is slow and how to fix the problem. So let's jump right in:
1. Your Hard Drive Is Almost Full
If you've been using your computer for a while now and you are asking why is my laptop so slow, there is a great chance your hard drive is 95 percent full. A full hard drive can slow down your computer by 50 percent.
It slows down your laptop because the hard drive no longer has space to save temporary files that are necessary for effective operation of programs.
To check if your hard drive is full, click on the Apple icon (MAC users) and select "about this Mac." If you're using a Windows laptop, go to the start menu or computer and right click on the primary hard drive (in most cases labeled drive C) and click on properties.
How To Fix: Hard Disk Defragment And Deep Cleaning
Once you're sure your hard drive is almost full, there are several things you can do to get it back to normal.
For starters, you should deep clean your laptop to get rid of unused programs. CCleaner (works for both MAC and Windows) is one of the best tools you can use to get rid of unwanted files.
Another way to create space in your hard drive is to get rid of some system restore and backup points because these also take up too much space.
If you're using Windows XP or an older version of windows, manual hard disk defragment may be the solution for you. Newer versions do not require manual defragging.
2. You May Have Too Many Startup Programs
Another answer to the question, "why is my laptop so slow" may be too many startup programs.
Software manufacturers design their programs in such a way that they startup when you start your computer. This way, when you click on the programs' icons, they open up fast.
This swift launch is very advantageous if you use the programs often but may be counterproductive for the applications you don't use as it will only cause your laptop to startup slower.
How To Fix: Disable Some Startup Programs
The only solution to this problem is to reduce the number of startup programs. You can identify which programs startup when you start your laptop by using Autoruns for Windows. This program allows you to see which applications run on startup.
To disable them, all you have to do is check off the checkbox next to the program. This solution to the "why is my laptop so slow" question can work on all Windows operating systems.
MAC users can use the CleanMyMac app, which also shows which applications are running in the background on startup. All you have to do is to disable the programs you don't need starting up from the list of apps listed.
3. Your Room May Be Too Dusty
Sometimes to get an answer to the question, "why is my laptop so slow?" you need to consider your surroundings.
Is your room or office too dusty? How long have you been using your computer and how often have you cleaned the internal parts since you got it?
Dust is one of the things that can slow down your laptop. When there's too much dust accumulated in the fan and other parts of your computer, your PC starts heating up, and your processor may slow down in a bid to use less power and avoid overheating.
How To Fix: Dust Off
To avoid dust buildup and overheating, it is recommended to clean your computer once every few months. If you're not confident to open it by yourself, it's advisable to get a professional to do it.
You should see a change in speed as soon as you've had it cleaned if the dust was the underlying cause of the problem.
4. Your Browser Can't Handle The Number Of Add-ons And Extensions
If you're asking why is my laptop so slow because of a slow browser, you should consider reducing the number of add-ons and extensions you have.
Extensions and add-ons use up a lot of memory, and when there are too many, it can significantly slow down your browser.
How To Fix: Remove Some Browser Add-ons And Extensions
To remove unwanted add-ons and extensions, go to the browser's extensions and add-ons manager and disable all the ones you don't need.
You should also consider enabling click-to-play plugins on your browser. Click-to-play plugins allow you to prevent flash applications and other content from loading, thereby preventing them from using CPU time.
And that's not all. With click-to-play plugins, you also get to save battery life, improve page load time, and conserve download bandwidth.
5. You Have A Virus
Another possible answer to why is my laptop so slow is a virus infection. A virus is a small program that infects your PC and affects normal functioning. A slow computer is one of the common symptoms of a virus infection.
If you don't remove the virus early, it can spread and make your laptop even slower. Fortunately, there are several ways to get rid of infections and restore your computer to normal processing speed.
How To Fix: Scan For Adware And Malware
To get rid of a computer virus you need to have an anti-virus program installed in your PC. Luckily, Windows and Mac both have excellent anti-virus software, although you can also use third-party services.
Run your antivirus program and clear all the malware and adware that pops up in the scan results.
If you already have an anti-virus program in place, it may help to keep it updated. Updates allow your anti-virus to be able to get rid of new types of viruses. If you are unsure how to go about it, visit your manufacturer's website for the details.
This solution to why is my laptop so slow works for Windows and Mac.
6. Some Programs Are Hogging Processing Powers
Another reason why your computer may be running slower than usual is due to resource hungry programs.
One of your applications may be using up 99 percent of your CPU power thereby making things slower when you need to use other programs.
It may also be that one of your application is experiencing a memory leak which causes it to swap disk thereby bringing your laptop slow to a crawl.
Disable Programs You Never Use
If you have a Windows laptop, you can identify the power-hogging application through the Task Manager.
Right click on the taskbar and select "Task Manager." Next, click "CPU," "Memory," and "Disk" to sort the list of applications using the most memory.
If you notice one of the applications is using more resources than the rest, you need to close it normally. If you can't manage to close it normally, do so in the task manager by selecting "End Task" to force it to close.
You can also improve the speed of your laptop by closing system tray programs. These programs launch when you start your computer and are typically hidden on the bottom right of your computer screen. Click on the arrow and disable any programs you are not using.
You should be able to see a significant difference in your PC speed after clearing power-hogging applications.
7. Your Windows OS Is Corrupted
Corrupt system files can also make your computer to run slow.
There are several reasons why your system files may become corrupted. These include power surges, a complete system crash, mismatched versions, updating errors, and sudden power outage.
How To Fix: Reinstall Windows
If you think a corrupt system file may be the reason why your laptop is slow, the first thing you should do is to determine whether or not the files are corrupted.
You can do this by trying to open them on a different PC. If they open without any problem, there is a great chance your files are corrupted. If the files are still unable to open something is wrong with the files and not your PC.
Once you are certain you have a case of corrupt files, you have two options.
You can use the System File Checker (SFC) command to restore your files to their original state. The SFC scan can only be completed through a command prompt window.
Allow the program to scan your device and complete the process without interrupting it. When it's done, it will tell you whether it found any corrupt files and will let you know if the files were fixed.
If your Windows is still crashing and showing bluescreens even after running SFC, it might be time to reinstall your OS.
Windows reinstallation is a sure bet that your computer will run smoothly because all the files will be reinstalled from scratch. However, before you do this, make sure it's not a hardware problem causing your laptop to slow down.
8. It May Be Time To Trade Your Old Computer For A New One
This solution may not be what you want to hear but the answer to your question, "why is my laptop so slow" may be that your computer is too old.
If you've been using the same machine for more than five years, there is a great chance its age is what is causing the slow speed.
Software manufacturers release advanced programs optimized to run efficiently on newer computers. As a result, your computer hardware may be having a difficult time trying to keep up with the demands of the new software.
How To Fix: Upgrade Or Get A New Laptop
The only solution to this problem is to upgrade your computer or buy a new one.
It's better to get a new one with more disk space, a higher processing speed, and updated hardware -- primarily because upgrading may cost you a lot of money and not offer you everything you need.
However, if you are on a tight budget, it may be a good idea to upgrade as you plan to get yourself a new laptop.
Did We Find Your Solution To "Why Is My Laptop So Slow?"
As you can see, there may be many reasons why your laptop is acting up and not performing at its normal speed. It might be that your room is too dusty or something is up with the hardware or software.
Before you try anything, try to diagnose the root cause of your problem. Otherwise, you will end up wasting too much time on a solution that may not be suitable for your problem.
The tips we've provided are very effective and are sure to fix your problem on "why is my laptop so slow" within no time. Try them and say hello to better processing speeds.
Have you tried any of our tips before, did they work? Which one did we leave out that you think should have made it to the list? Share your views and opinions in the comments section below.