Chris HoffmanEditor-in-Chief

Chris Hoffman is Editor-in-Chief of How-To Geek. He"s written about technology for end a decade and was a PCWorld columnist for two years. Chris has written because that The brand-new York Times, been interviewed together a technology expert ~ above TV stations choose Miami"s NBC 6, and also had his work-related covered by news outlets favor the BBC. Because 2011, Chris has written over 2,000 write-ups that have been read virtually one exchange rate times---and that"s just right here at How-To Geek. Check out more...

You are watching: Clean up slow computer windows 7

About How-To Geek
UpdatedFeb 9, 2017, 9:18 to be EDT| 5 min read

Windows pcs don’t need to slow under over time. Whether her PC has gradually end up being slower or it suddenly ground to a halt a couple of minutes ago, there could be quite a few reasons for the slowness.

As through all pc issues, don’t be afraid to provide your computer system a reboot if something’s not working properly. This have the right to fix rather a few problems and also is quicker than attempting to manually troubleshoot and fix the problem yourself.

Find Resource-Hungry Programs

Your pc is to run slow because something is utilizing up those resources. If it’s suddenly running slower, a runaway process might be using 99% of your CPU resources, for example. Or, an application can be enduring a storage leak and using a big amount of memory, bring about your pc to swap come disk. Alternately, an application could be using the decaying a lot, leading to other applications to sluggish down as soon as they need to pack data from or conserve it to the disk.

To discover out, open the task Manager. You can right-click her taskbar and also select the “Task Manager” option or press Ctrl+Shift+Escape to open up it. On home windows 8, 8.1, and also 10, the new Task Manager offers an upgraded interface that color-codes applications making use of a most resources. Click the “CPU,” “Memory,” and “Disk” headers to type the perform by the applications utilizing the many resources. If any application is using too lot resources, you could want come close it generally — if girlfriend can’t, select it here and also click “End Task” to force it to close.


Close system Tray Programs

Many applications have tendency to run in the mechanism tray, or notification area. This applications regularly launch in ~ startup and stay to run in the background yet remain concealed behind the up arrowhead icon in ~ the bottom-right edge of your screen. Click the up arrow icon close to the mechanism tray, right-click any type of applications girlfriend don’t require running in the background, and close them to totally free up resources.


Disable Startup Programs

RELATED: How to make Your windows 10 computer Boot Faster

Better yet, protect against those applications native launching at startup to save memory and CPU cycles, as well as speed increase the login process.

On home windows 8, 8.1, and 10, there’s now a startup manager in the task Manager you deserve to use to regulate your startup programs. Right-click the taskbar and also select “Task Manager” or press Ctrl+Shift+Escape come launch it. Click end to the Startup tab and also disable startup applications friend don’t need. Windows will helpfully tell girlfriend which applications sluggish down her startup procedure the most.


Reduce Animations

RELATED: Speed Up any type of PC, Smartphone, or tablet By Disabling Animations

Windows offers quite a couple of animations, and also those animations have the right to make your pc seem a little slower. For example, Windows have the right to minimize and maximize home windows instantly if friend disable the associated animations.

To disable animations, push Windows an essential + X or right-click the begin button and also select “System.” Click “Advanced device Settings” ~ above the left and click the “Settings” button under Performance. Choose “Adjust for ideal performance” under Visual effects to disable all the animations, or choose “Custom” and also disable the separation, personal, instance animations friend don’t want to see. Because that example, uncheck “Animate windows as soon as minimizing and maximizing” to disable the minimize and also maximize animations.


Lighten Your web Browser

RELATED: How to enable Click-to-Play Plugins in Every web Browser

There’s a an excellent chance you usage your web web browser a lot, so her web internet browser may just be a little slow. It’s a great idea to usage as few browser extensions, or add-ons, as possible — those slow down your web browser and also cause it come use much more memory.

Go right into your web browser’s expansions or Add-ons manager and also remove add-ons girlfriend don’t need. Girlfriend should also consider allowing click-to-play plug-ins. Preventing Flash and also other content from loading will stop unimportant Flash contents from making use of CPU time.


Scan for Malware and also Adware

RELATED: What"s the ideal Antivirus for windows 10? (Is windows Defender great Enough?)

There’s likewise a possibility your computer system is slow because malicious software program is slowing that down and running in the background. This might not be flat-out malware — it may be software that interferes through your internet browsing to track it and include additional advertisements, because that example.

To be extra safe, scan your computer v an antivirus program. Friend should likewise scan it v Malwarebytes, which records a most “potentially unwanted programs” (PUPs) that most antivirus programs have tendency to ignore. This programs try to sneak top top your computer when friend install other software, and also you virtually certainly don’t desire them.


Free up Disk Space

RELATED: 7 means To complimentary Up tough Disk space On Windows

If your hard drive is almost completely full, your computer may run noticeably slower. You want to leaving your computer some room to work-related on your hard drive. Follow our overview to freeing up an are on your Windows pc to free up room. Girlfriend don’t need any type of third-party software program — just running the decaying Cleanup tool had in windows can help rather a bit.


Defragment Your tough Disk

RELATED: Do i Really must Defrag mine PC?

Defragmenting your tough disk in reality shouldn’t be vital on modern-day versions the Windows. It’ll instantly defragment mechanical difficult drives in the background. Solid-state cd driver don’t yes, really need classic defragmentation, although modern-day versions the Windows will certainly “optimize” lock — and that’s fine.

You shouldn’t worry around defragmentation many of the time. However, if you do have a mechanical tough drive and also you’ve just put a lot of records on the journey — for example, copy a large database or gigabytes of pc game papers — those files could be defragmented due to the fact that Windows hasn’t gotten approximately to defragmenting them yet. In this situation, you can want to open up the decaying defragmenter tool and also perform a scan to check out if you need to run a hand-operated defrag program.


Uninstall Programs girlfriend Don’t Use

Open the regulate Panel, uncover the perform of set up programs, and also uninstall program you don’t use and also don’t require from your PC. This can aid speed your computer up, as those programs might include lift processes, autostart entries, device services, context food selection entries, and other things that can slow down your PC. It’ll additionally save room on your tough drive and also improve mechanism security — because that example, you absolutely shouldn’t have actually Java installed if you’re not making use of it.

See more: Did Dog Sell His House In Hawaii, When Did Dog The Bounty Hunter Live In Hawaii


Reset Your computer / Reinstall Windows

RELATED: Everything You have to Know around "Reset This PC" in home windows 8 and 10

If the various other tips below didn’t fix your problem, the one timeless systems to fix Windows difficulties — aside from rebooting your PC, of food — is acquiring a fresh home windows installation.