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Repair Solutions for A Sluggish Computer

Aug 17, 2007
Nine times out of ten computer problems can be resolved quickly and painlessly if you know what steps to take. As a computer repair technician the most common question I get asked is 'Why is my computer is so slow'. In this article I will talk about how to fix a sluggish computer.

Every computer connected to the internet will at one time or another begin to slow down to a crawl if certain maintenance procedures are not followed. What a lot of people don't realize is that every time you install a program on your PC it is set by default to startup and run in the background every time Windows boots up. As your program list grows so does the number of programs constantly running behind the scenes consuming valuable resources. Fortunately there is a simple fix for this that can give your PC a major performance boost. This involves the 'system configuration utility'. Follow these steps:

1. Click on Start / Run
2. Type 'msconfig' in the run box
3. When the System Configuration Utility windows appears click on the 'startup' tab
4. If you are running windows XP you can actually uncheck every program and your system will still run fine, but there are certain applications that should be left checked. These include your anti virus program, spyware blocker, firewall etc. Remember that by unchecking these programs you are not uninstalling, but only preventing them from constantly running even when not in use. So do this at your own discretion.

Note for Windows 98/ME users: you must leave System Tray and Explorer checked for PC to run properly

5. Reboot your Computer.

You should notice a considerable difference in your PC startup time and performance after completing the MSCONFIG, however, there are a couple of other maintenance tips you should follow on a regular basis to keep your PC running smoothly. The first is to delete your temp files and cookies every few weeks. If you are running Internet Explorer 7 or Firefox then you probably don't have to worry about this step because your browser will handle it for you. If you are still running IE6 then do the following:

1. Click on Start / All Programs / Accessories / System Tools / Disk Cleanup
2. Check all boxes and click ok

The final maintenance tip I will mention involves repairing your computer's registry. The windows registry is a database of information that windows references during operation. Over time the registry can accumulate several invalid entries and should be cleaned to prevent a decline in system performance. There are several registry cleaners on the market, all of which try to accomplish relatively the same objective. Some are free while others cost money. I would recommend doing a little research and buying one (they usually run around 30.00), but running a free program is better than nothing. You can find several options by going to download.com and searching for 'registry cleaner'. Just make sure you backup your registry before hand so that you can revert back if necessary. Most registry cleaners will have a backup option built in to the program.

If after this tune up you are still not satisfied with your PCs performance then you may want to consider an upgrade. The easiest and most cost effective upgrade you can do and still get a performance increase is to add more memory. I suggest having at least 512MB in a system running Windows XP.

I hope this article was helpful and your PC got the boost it needed.
About the Author
Chad Henry is a computer repair technician and writer for easy-computer-repair.com where you can get detailed solutions for the most common computer problems.
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