If your computer runs slow, it could be for any number of reasons, but knowing that probably doesn’t ease your frustration. Sometimes your computer runs slow because of viruses or because you have too many pictures stored on your hard drive. But before you go running out to buy a new computer first you might want to take a few minutes and see if the reason for the computer running more slowly isn’t something that you might be able to fix on your own.
One of the main reasons that the computer runs slow is that the start up system is easily overloaded. Many programs, when you install them, have an option for running automatically when you start up your computer. The best way to figure out just how many programs start automatically when the computer is turned on is this: Go to your start menu and select the “all programs” function. When the list of your programs opens up, find the one labelled “start up” and click on it. This will tell you how many of your programs are queued to start automatically.
Of course, before you start deleting programs haphazardly from this menu, there are a few steps to follow. After all, if you delete the wrong thing problem won’t just be that the computer runs slow. You might just give yourself a computer that won’t start at all.
First you will want to back up your entire system or to select a point from which the system will restore itself. You do this by first going to your start menu, then at the system tools menu (located in the accessories section of your “All Programs” menu), simply click on the System Restore option and then select the criteria you want.
From there you will want to run the msconfig program (this is done by typing in msconfig into the “run” option on your start menu). When the msconfig opens up, select the Start Up Menu. Do not be alarmed. There are going to be a number of things that you will see listed here that you might not have seen before, especially if you have never run the msconfig. Once the list is opened, use your common sense to select the programs that you don’t want to run when your machine first starts up. Simply uncheck the programs to turn off the auto startup option. Don’t worry, this won’t delete the programs altogether, it will just tell your computer that you prefer to start them manually.
The reason it is important to weed your Start Up Menu is that every program that starts up when your computer does eats up a little bit of your computer’s speed. The more programs that are running, the slower your computer will run. And, well, if your computer runs slow, chances are that there are a bunch of programs open that you didn’t even know you had.
Make sure to pay attention when installing new programs and to un-check the box that reads “run program automatically at start up.”