Our fast-paced life of today is replete with aggressive deadlines that demand execution at lightning speed. Take a moment to ponder your daily routine and you will realize that high-speed execution is the order of the day in almost every aspect of your life – be it the timely fruition of your deliverables at work or at home or the speedy performance of your personal devices and appliances, including your personal computer (PC).
Indeed, there is nothing more exasperating than having to make do with a sluggish computer, especially when you are working on an important assignment with a short delivery cycle that leaves no room for complacency or delay. When managing tight deadlines becomes a daily challenge owing to the crawling speed of your laptop or desktop, then you need to take some vital steps to ensure that your PC runs faster.
So How do we increase computer speed and make it run faster?
You will have to check with both the hardware and software as both can slow down your PC. Apart from the usual tips and common sense tweeks you need to leverage the below mentioned tips to infuse new life into your existing PC and energise it enough to deliver top-notch speed that is no less than that of a Ferrari!
Opt For the Latest Processor + Motherboard Combination
Have you ever wondered the driving force behind your machine’s ingenuity to perform up to billions and trillions of operations per second? It is the none other than your computer’s processor or its integrated circuitry (IC) that performs calculations at a razor-sharp speed with the aid of its arithmetic logic unit (ALU) and control unit (CU). Also referred to as microprocessor or CPU (Central Processing Unit), this small yet powerful electronic chip is what makes it possible for your personal computer to run simple and complex arithmetical/logical/control operations and other basic system instructions that are received in the form of keyboard/mouse input and subsequently decoded and processed to generate the desired output.
The processor is held within the main printed circuit board called the motherboard which further houses a host of critical electronic components and connectors for external peripherals. While the processor facilitates the execution of different applications and programs, the role of the motherboard is to enable communication between your machine’s various electronic components that are embedded in the motherboard. Hence, exploiting a potent processor and motherboard combination is one of the surest ways to bring about a dramatic change in the speed of your machine.
These days, a single IC is empowered with multi-core processors which harness the core logic of two or more processors to deliver superior performance through efficient and parallel processing of multiple tasks. When it comes to choosing first-rate processors for your Windows computer, Intel and AMD (Advanced Micro Devices) are your best bets.
If you are looking for the best Intel processors to speed up your personal computer, then you can select from one of Intel’s Core i3, i5, i7 or i9 line up, depending upon your budget and performance needs. One must admit though that choosing your pick from a vast ensemble of Intel model numbers is rather confusing, more so when one has the option to narrow their search based on a multitude of specifications like the generation that a particular processor belongs to, the number of cores that characterise it, the availability or non-availability of features like Hyper-threading and Turbo Boost, the number of clock cycles that the processor can accomplish in a second (denoted by GHz), the quantum of task that can be achieved with each clock cycle, the amount of cache that is built into the processor etc. etc.
To alleviate your dilemma of deciding upon the most suitable Intel processor that complements your distinct usage and requirements aptly, we have compiled a concise list of the standout features of each of Intel’s Core i chips to help you to make an informed decision.
While Core i3 is the cheapest among the three, it also ranks the lowest when it comes to high-speed performance. However, the fact that it is enabled with dual-core processors and hyper-threading ensures that it still packs enough punch within it to deliver a reasonable performance under load, provided your usage is limited to lightweight activities such as checking and replying to emails, working on word documents, surfing the web and playing games that don’t consume much power.
Bolstered with Intel’s Turbo Boost technology, Core i5 is best suited for the general users who are equally serious about their work as much as they are about their games and need optimal speed to cater to their productivity and gaming needs. Instead of making use of hyper-threading, the Core i5 relies on four physical cores (quad-core processor) to deliver sound performance at a price range that does not necessarily burn a hole in your pockets.
Designed for superlative performance with the added advantage of incorporating the most advanced integrated graphics, maximum cache and the largest number of physical and virtual cores, the hyper-threaded and quad-core processor-enabled Core i7 series is meant for the zealous gamers and creative enthusiasts who need robust performances to cater to their endless trysts with graphic-intensive 3D games and heavy-duty applications that aid editing of videos and photos, video encoding etc.
Intel Core i3-7100, Intel Core i5-7500, Intel Core i5-6600K, Intel Core i7-7700K, Intel Core i7-6700K, Intel Core i7-4790K and Intel Core i7-7820X are few of our top picks from the eminent Intel line up.
If you are opting for a less-expensive AMD-powered processor, then fret not as there are several market-leading options available for you too in the form of AMD’s stellar Ryzen series of CPUs with top-of-the-line processors like the AMD Ryzen 7 1800X that boasts enviable statistics like an astounding octa-core processor with 16 threads, 3.6 GHz base clock speed, 20.8 MB cache, 95 W thermal design power and many more to take on the heaviest of workloads effortlessly. Other AMD processors that are worth exploring include AMD Ryzen 7 1700, AMD Ryzen 5 1600, AMD Ryzen 5 1500X, AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1950X and AMD Athlon x4-860K.
Read this article to choose among the best processors of 2017 for you according to your needs and budget.
Lastly, if you are a die-hard gamer, then instead of trying to rack your brains over the perfect processor – motherboard combination, you can settle for a simpler option by buying a powerful gaming computer like an Apple Mac Pro that is remarkably thin but incredibly performance-oriented owing to its Xeon 6, 8 and 12-core processors, Thunderbolt 2 port technology, dual AMD FirePro pro-level graphics, up to 30 MB of L3 cache, 256 GB PCIe-based SSD (Solid-State Drive) and 4K video support.
Amplify Your System’s Memory
Apart from a sharp processor, your device also needs adequate memory for it to be able to support your generous use of heavy applications. Your computer’s working memory or the RAM (Random Access Memory) temporarily stores the operating system (OS), application programs and other files that are currently in use by the system.
RAM also known as virtual memory enables your machine’s processor to retrieve the necessary information at a faster pace instead of having to continuously access the system’s long-term memory or the hard disk drive (HDD) to fetch and store information. Hence, it is wise to expand your computer’s virtual memory to at least 8 GB or more for a respectable performance. However, if heavy applications are a common phenomenon, then a minimum of 16 GB RAM is desirable.
Move to Solid State Drives (SSDs)
The standard performance delivered by a conventional SATA (Serial Advanced Technology Attachment) hard drive is no match for the extraordinary performance rendered to you by an expensive but high-performing storage technology in the form of SSD.
Apart from reducing power consumption and extending battery life, replacing your machine’s HDD with a speedy SSD will give an instant lift to the lag time that you generally experience with your machine during execution of everyday activities such as booting up your system, switching between programs, loading games or accessing multiple web pages simultaneously.
Considering that a good SSD can read and write data at a speed that scores way above the moderate speed of an average hard drive, an SSD can easily be the best upgrade that you can decide upon to make your system snappy like never before!
Read this excellent article on SSD vs HDD before deciding on your preferred type of hard drive.
Disable the Anti-Virus
With rise in cyber crimes in the form of malware attacks, phishing, spamming, carding & identity thefts and with ingenious hackers constantly prowling public and unsecured networks to gain unethical and unlawful access to private and confidential data, the use of an anti-virus program has become non-negotiable these days if you are serious about the safekeep of your computer and its data. This is especially true for those who frequently connect their laptops or desktops to wireless network connections like a Wi-Fi or to external devices that may be infected with viruses.
However, an active antivirus program that runs frequent scans on your PC to detect and immobilize malicious software and virus attacks can slow down your computer considerably. Hence, disabling it is an effective technique to boost the speed of your machine. However, this step is risky and should only be attempted provided you are working offline without connecting your machine to any external device or if you are willing to accept the associated risks that concern the safety of your system and its associated data.
Remove Clutter to Free Your Machine’s Virtual Memory
Your working data is stored in your computer’s temporary storage memory called RAM and is lost as soon as you switch off your machine. The next time you switch on your computer, this data is automatically re-fetched from the HDD or SSD and reloaded into RAM. These startup programs and applications that launch automatically every time that your system is booted, tend to consume a lot of virtual memory and consequently reduce your computer’s speed of operation. Thus, it is essential that a meticulous clean-up of your system’s virtual memory is undertaken regularly to do away with the unnecessary applications that get loaded into it during the boot up process.
To do so, access the ‘Start’ menu of your Windows PC, type the ‘msconfig’ command in ‘Run’ and press Enter to run the command. Next switch to the ‘Startup’ tab and remove all the applications that are not required for your current session or on a day-to-day basis. Voila! Your computer picks up speed and starts working at a pace that is sure to bring a wide grin to your face!
Keep Your Computer Spick and Span
The next that you think about engaging in a thorough house cleaning spree, do think about your PC too! Often, we disregard the fact that our laptop or desktop is also prone to dust, similar to the other objects in our home. You can easily fix these 10 common computer problems yourself.
Dust accumulation can cause your device to heat up unnecessarily by preventing airflow and subsequent cooling of the processors. The resulting overheating visibly hinders your computer’s performance, especially when the dust gathers in the side vents or on the motherboard.
So, apart from cleaning your upholstery and home interiors, you must also take out time, at least once every six months, to spruce up your computing device, both from outside and from within, with the aid of a vacuum cleaner or a canister of compressed air. This might eat into your precious time a bit but the results are totally worth the effort!
Use a Malware Clean Software to Rev Up Your Machine
Other than exhibiting the potential to cause grave damage to your machine by assuming the garb of a computer virus, Trojan horse, worm, ransomware, spyware, adware or a scareware, harmful software like malware can also severely affect the operational prowess of your device by diminishing the Internet speed or the speed of the machine’s operating system and applications.
Thus, if you have been witnessing recurrent browser malfunctioning or launching of new browser homepages or toolbars without your knowledge or have observed abnormal or excessive hard disk/network activity, unwanted pop-ups, low disk space, system crashes (such as the infamous BSOD or Blue Screen of Death) and other idiosyncrasies related to your PC lately, and it has nothing to do with your excessive use of any intensive program or application, then it’s quite likely that your machine has been exposed to the malicious intent of an intrusive malware.
Most malware and badware do not get detected by an anti-virus and hence you will need assistance of an anti-malware as well.
Wondering how to go about it? Make sure that your device is in the pink of health always by scanning it regularly with a reputed anti-malware software such as MalwareBytes. Your computer will be disinfected in no time and you can resume your rigorous tasks with élan!
Don’t Compromise on the Authenticity of a Software Program
Last but not the least, installing unauthorized or unreliable third party software onto your desktop or laptop is a strict ‘no-no’. They may give you short-term monetary gains but the damage caused by them in the long run can far surpass the intermediate benefits, if any. Do your research before downloading and installing any free software on your PC.
These are few of the handy tips that can easily and effectively boost the failing speed of your slow PC. Incorporate them today to stimulate your machine and relish the joy of working on a computer that works as fast as a Ferrari itself!
You can also join our computer hardware and networking course to learn more about maintaining and fixing computers and become a professional computer hardware technician as well.
Please let us know if we have missed any important tip here and if you have any more ideas to make your PC run more faster.