How can I determine which component is slowing down my computer?
True, your car is no longer new, but it is not an ancestor either. But for some time, it no longer responds correctly. Apps load less quickly and even mundane tasks take forever. What is the problem?
Know that this impression of slowing down the computer is not at all surprising. This is quite a normal thing that you should not worry about. Not only do solutions exist, but you’ll find that not everything is as insurmountable as it seems. The following tips do not apply to Apple computers.
The problem is not necessarily hardware related
Before we get to the point of our article, keep in mind that many of the causes of a slow computer are related to what we would consider a “software” problem. This means that the machine itself should not be questioned.
In the past, one of the first tips was to defragment the hard drive because Windows tends to fragment data. Since the advent of SSDs, this advice no longer applies. However, the software aspect can still be involved, and an ineffective antivirus or an Internet browser overloaded with extensions will not speed things up.
Note also that Windows can slow down quickly due to the presence of many so-called “resident” programs. These run in the background without necessarily being noticed by the user. The problem is, they can quickly saturate the RAM and clog the system.
Too little RAM
A smart switch can delay the PC vote to discuss one of the major “hardware issues”, if any. Most computers are sold with enough RAM. The goal is obviously to save money.
Simply put, random access memory (RAM) is your PC’s flash memory. Discharges when turned off. On the other hand, it keeps track of all the programs in use and can become saturated if you run very greedy programs, are loaded with lots or lots of data.
Any machine equipped with 4 GB of RAM should be avoided at the moment, and even 8 GB of RAM seems fair to us. If you are working on several programs at the same time, if you use demanding programs and video games, or if Windows talks about it “insufficient memory”To reach 16 GB, you need to invest by adding RAM sticks or replacing the existing ones.
A RAM problem is a classic, but the “evil” can run deeper and affect your machine’s processing power. When you see slowdowns, press Alt+Ctrl+Delete and ask for “Task Manager”. In the “Performance” tab, it shows “CPU usage” in particular.
If this value constantly flirts with 100%, even when you only run a program that is particularly useful to you, it is because your processor can no longer support the task. A change is necessary, but the work is more complicated than with RAM.
It is often said that it is useless to update a car that is more than 6-7 years old.
It remains possible to change the processor of the PC. You need to ask to find the most suitable model, and if the replacement is not too complicated, it is better to ask a professional to handle it. Unfortunately, if you’re saturating the processor, it’s often because your machine is already old: then you won’t be able to find a suitable processor anymore.
A more “global” update of the PC
In the scenario we just mentioned, the change is more radical, and in addition to the processor, it is important to change the motherboard. The central part of the machine, it is, in a sense, the “frame” of your computer.
It is really on the motherboard that we install the processor, connect the RAM modules and connect various elements such as hard drives or SSDs, a graphics card, a possible sound card or a network card.
Vendors have “upgrade kits” that will upgrade your computer, but the kit should be tailored to your situation. Indeed, depending on the age of the configuration, in addition to the processor and motherboard, it is necessary to replace the memory or even the storage unit. It is often said that it is useless to update a car that is more than 6-7 years old.
From the issue of storage
Now let’s take a quick look at memory. Fast, because most machines today are already equipped with SSDs, but if your computer is still running on a “traditional” hard drive (with platters), a change is necessary.
By switching to an SSD, you’ll enjoy seeing Windows start up in less than 10 seconds and all your programs load much faster. Better yet, all logins will also be accelerated to load a new image during the slideshow, loading the next level of the game.
Even if your machine can accept them, don’t buy an NVMe SSD over a SATA one: they’re more expensive and the difference in usage is often negligible. However, they have the advantage of being more compact: practical for narrow computers. If you have the budget, consider a second SSD or large capacity drive to store games and apps.
Choice of graphics card
The fact is that today, especially in the case of a “gaming” computer, the most discussed element is the graphics card. The advantage of such a “problem” is that it is easier to identify: the PC works well, but it is impossible to fully use video games.
The screen may be slow, choppy, or require you to turn off many options. The “cure” is simple: you need to remove the old graphics card and put it in one with more fishing. It’s better to let someone take care of it before, but the maneuver is neither complicated nor expensive… apart from the cost of the new card, depends on your ambitions.
However, be aware that again, on a 6-7 year old machine, the graphics card is probably not the only reason: the RAM is probably not enough, and the processor may be useless. In the case of a game, it is good to look at the recommended configurations.
As you can see, there are many reasons why the computer slows down. They can affect software – Windows doesn’t always age well – but also hardware. Before we end this article, we would like to draw your attention to an often overlooked hardware point.
Indeed, a computer gets dirty quickly, even 15 or 20 years ago. Dust is the sworn enemy of components. We suggest you open the machine frequently to clean the dust. You shouldn’t do it randomly, but give you an explanation and your computer will breathe better!