How to Make Your Old Computer Work Like New

An average computer has a lifespan of about five to eight years—if it’s well maintained and regularly updated. A computer could start out with stellar performance and speed, but after a few years, you’ll find that it may slow down and not perform the way it used to.

This could be caused by a variety of factors: too many background or startup programs running, a crammed or corrupted hard drive, viruses or malware attacks, or even an outdated operating system. That said, all hope is not lost as there are still a few maneuvers to be done to make your old machine work like new.

Free up space

A hard drive filled to the brim is sure to slow down your computer. It may be storing lots of unnecessary temporary or unused files and programs. If you’re running on Microsoft’s newest OS, you can make use of the built-in tools like AVG TuneUp to clean up and tune up your hard drive, improving your computer’s performance.

For other OS, you can download programs like Grab Revo Uninstaller which do a thorough removal of programs you don’t use anymore, or Slimware Utilities SlimCleaner which does a similar job, with an added feature of sending you notifications when unwanted software (such as a toolbar packaged with an app download) tries to make its way into your computer. Additionally, you can move your photo, video, and music files to an external hard drive to free up even more space on your computer.

Install a lightweight OS

Most default OS comes pre-installed with bloatware files that can’t be removed. The Windows 10 OS, in particular, is chock-full of bloatware files, such as 3D Viewer, Candy Crush Soda Saga, Disney Magic Kingdoms, and Snip & Sketch, among others. These files both take up storage space and processing power, which could become a huge issue for older computers with limited RAM.

A quick solution would be shifting to a lightweight OS. For one, plug-and-play OS Xubuntu is perfect for old laptops as it’s pre-built with all the basic things you’d need, and without any bloatware: a web browser, an email and office app, and a media app. If you need to run heavier programs, however, then the Linux Lite may be a better option. It’s a lightweight OS that requires low resources to run, with the rest of the resource dedicated to heavy load programs like graphically demanding games such as Grand Theft Auto V and the Witcher 3, and other industrial design apps like the Linux PCB design software and other CAD programs–all without much lag. What’s more is that it can even run heavy visual effects and compositing programs like Natron and Eyeon Fusion. Indeed, in this case, lightweight doesn’t shy away from heavy work.

Remove pesky malware and viruses

In addition to bogging down your PC’s performance, malware and viruses can even compromise your privacy. This is why it’s important to scan your machine regularly, and you can do this using security programs. An antivirus or a malware scanning program—such as the built-in Windows Defender utility on Windows OX—detects malicious files on your computer, and ensures the removal or quarantine of these files.

When the virus is gone, your computer should recover some of its speed back. However, it’s highly recommended that you get a professional to check your PC, for malware cases particularly, as remnants of malware could still be lurking within your machine. This way, the professional could secure your files and restore the OS safely.

A computer is an invaluable tool to help you do everyday tasks, and they don’t come cheap. Make the most of your machine by renewing it following these steps. For more helpful tech tips, check out our other ‘How To’ articles

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