How to speed up a Windows 10 laptop

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Design by Muntaha / TechEngage

When you got your first computer or laptop, it was likely speedy and seamless in performance. But with time, it got slower and now doesn’t work the way it used to. Sound familiar?

Well, it happens, and we’re going to sort this problem out for you.

Today, we are going to list some ways to speed up your Windows laptop.

Here are our top ten picks:

Disable startup programs

Task Manager screenshot
Screenshot @abdugeek

Many programs in Windows ask for permission to start when the computer boots. Every time you boot your computer, these programs start one by one, and the machine takes on a heavy workload. This makes a computer slow, resulting in sluggish performance and lag.

To get rid of this problem, you have to disable the apps that run at startup. To do this, follow these simple steps:

  1. Press the Windows key and search for Task Manager. Or press a combination of the CTRL + SHIFT + ESC keys at the same time. This will open the Task Manager.
  2. Now, navigate to the Startup tab and look for the programs that are enabled.
  3. Disable the programs with high startup impact that are not necessary.
  4. To disable startup status, right click on the program and click Disable.

Remove bloatware

Bloatware is a common culprit in slow performance. Companies ship their devices with plenty of software that you never use. These apps take up space and can be cleared to free up space on your device.

Removing bloatware will increase your Windows 10 laptop’s speed. To remove these items, you can use software such as CCleaner. This software will not only uninstall unwanted programs from your laptop but also clean up the remains of these applications on your computer as well.

Change power settings

Windows Mobility Center screenshot
Screenshot @abdugeek

Your laptop might be running slow because it is in power saving mode. When the laptop is running in this mode, it limits processes and runs programs at their minimum speeds. If you are wondering why your programs are running slow even when your laptop is charging or has enough battery, check to see if you are running on the low power mode.

To change this, you can do the following:

  1. Press the Windows key and search for Windows Mobility settings.
  2. Find your battery status settings and change it to high-performance mode.
  3. You will see a change in speed after switching it to high-performance mode.

Remember, the high-performance mode will drain a lot of battery from your laptop, so only keep it on high-performance if it’s connected to the charging station.

You can read our battery saving guide for laptops here.

Disk cleanup

Disk cleanup screenshot
Screenshot by @abdugeek

Just like bloatware, junk files on your computer will make any machine slow. Cleaning it will not only make room for other programs on your computer but will also enhance the performance of your laptop. With disk cleanup, you can remove temporary files, thumbnails, and recycle bin or trash items.

Disk cleanup is an easy way to deal with the junk files. To start disk cleanup, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the disk that you want to clean.
  2. Right-click the disk and go to Properties.
  3. Find and click the Disk Cleanup button.
  4. Select the temporary files and junk that you want to delete.
  5. Press Ok and wait for it to finish.

Now your Windows 10 laptop or PC is free of junk files.

System scan for viruses

Windows security tab screenshot
Screenshot by @abdugeek

Viruses, malware, spyware, and adware can also cause system lag. A virus can create a mess out of your laptop if ignored. Adware will constantly open browsers to show you annoying ads that can affect performance. And spyware keeps running in the background to track your activity, which is alarming as well as inefficient for your laptop’s speed.

If your laptop or PC is infected with any of these, it will inevitably slow down performance. To keep yourself safe from these kinds of harmful programs, make sure you have a trusted anti-virus program installed on your computer. Windows security is one of the best features that you can get on Windows 10. With Windows Defender built-in, you can save yourself from harmful programs. The new version of Windows Defender is aggressive and detects many harmful programs before they get into your computer. You can also install third-party anti-virus software to protect your laptop from malware and viruses.

Turn off animation and effects

Shiny effects and animation might look great visually, but they are going to eat a lot of RAM. These take a lot of processing power and end up slowing down your machine. Turning them off will help make your computer work faster. If you turn off animation and effects in Windows 10, you can enhance its performance.

Try turning off the effects and animation and see what you prefer. For maximum performance follow the steps below:

  1. Press the Windows key and search for System.
  2. Open System and navigate to Advanced system settings in the control panel.
  3. Click the Settings button under Performance in advanced settings.
  4. Select Adjust for best performance and press Ok.

Turning off transparency in Windows also helps in kicking performance up a notch! Turn off transparency effects in the Windows and go with the flat look. You can also change your wallpaper to solid colors to see if that helps. Follow the steps below to turn off transparency effects:

  1. Open Settings in Windows 10 and search for Personalization.
  2. Open personalization and navigate to Colors tab.
  3. From the colors tab, find Transparency effects and turn them off.

Bonus Tips

If these tips are not working for you, then we have some bonus tips that might be helpful. If these tips don’t do the job it’s likely old hardware that is making your Windows machine run slow.

Restart your PC

Restarting your PC often helps in solving the problem of a slow computer. Sometimes the operating system needs a reboot to work better. If you find your computer hanging or lagging in performance or something is not working properly, a quick reboot can sometimes sort out this problem. Reboot your computer and see if things improve when you’re back online again.

Get more RAM

Adding more RAM to your computer means that you have more space for your programs to run simultaneously without losing the ability to multitask. If you can expand memory on your computer, then go for it, and you will see a boost in performance.

Clean Windows 10 installation

If nothing is working and your computer has a lot of junk and programs that keep it busy, then you should try a clean Windows 10 installation. After installing a clean version of Windows 10, your computer will feel like a new one, and you can install only the programs you need. But make sure that you take care of junk in the future instead of letting it get out of hand all over again. Clean it regularly or at least weekly and your laptop will remain healthy and fast.

These are the tips that can drastically improve your Windows 10 performance. If these are not working, you can contact the hardware vendor as the problem might be in the hardware.

If we missed something, share it with us in the comments below. Also, share these tips with your friends who complain about their slow computers!

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