Nothing is more annoying than a slow PC. What makes it worse is that most computers aren’t really slow. They’ve been made to crawl with the dead weight of countless unwanted and pre-installed programs. It’s time you cleaned your computer of all this, and restored it to its optimal speed.
Also Read Toolkit’s earlier columns
• STEP 1: Make a list of all the programs installed on your computer. This will come in handy while you are deciding what to retain in the system and what to delete.
You can do this by clicking on the start button and access the Control Panel. Click on Programs and Features in this window to see all the installed programs.
• STEP 2: If you see any programs that you installed but don’t use any more, just click on the “uninstall/change” tab on top of the list.
• STEP 3: The list also contains a number of programs that you may not be familiar with. Some of these come pre-installed with your computer and are needed for its proper functioning, while others have been added by the computer manufacturer.
If you’re unsure of a program, note down its name and simply Google it. This will help you figure out if the program is needed or if you can remove it without any loss of functionality.
• STEP 4: Now that you’ve removed the more obvious deadweights, you can move on to removing the programs that slow your computer during start-up. Go to start once again. At the bottom, find Start search, type “msconfig” and press Enter. This will open the System Configuration window.
• STEP 5: In this window, click on the Start Up tab, on the top right corner. This will display a list of programs that the computer starts when it boots Windows Vista. Again, some of these programs are necessary, while the others are simply sitting there, slowing your computer. Go through this list and look for programs that you don’t need at start up—this could be something like ‘iTunes’ or any other music player.
• STEP 6: To stop these programs during start-up, simply uncheck them. That is, every program mentioned in the list has a box that is checked to signify that it is run during start-up. To stop this from happening, just uncheck that box.
• STEP 7: Again, there will be programs that you’re unfamiliar with. To figure out what they do and if they are needed, copy the program’s name and search for it on sysinfo. This site will then tell you what the program does and if you can remove it without causing any problems in the future.
• STEP 8: To see if there are still some heavy troublemaking programs, press Ctrl+Alt+Del on your computer and launch the Task Manager. Click on the Processes tab, and see which processes are taking the maximum memory on your computer. Note down the name and Google them. If they are not needed, stop the processes.
• STEP 9: Set up a schedule and follow these steps at least once a month. It will help you remove any application you don’t need but which has come pre-installed on your computer or that you may have downloaded by mistake.