10 Tips to Make your Business Computers Faster
Nothing is more frustrating than a sluggish computer at work. In this modern, high-tech, fast-paced world of digitalization, waiting for a couple of extra seconds for something to load on your system can affect the overall efficiency and productivity.
A study suggests that slow-running computers can cost businesses up to 5.5 days of productivity loss per year for every employee.
A sluggish or slow PC or laptop can lead to unproductivity, inefficiencies and even frustration. Below are 10 helpful tips on how to make your business computers faster.
How to Make your Business Computers Faster
Fortunately, you can try a few options before giving up and getting a new computer. You can ensure your business computer runs as efficiently as possible with some simple steps.
If your PC is wasting your valuable work time, here are some tips you can try to make it faster again.
1. Get Rid of Unused and Unwanted Programs
Computers generally have pre-installed programs that run background processes and take up valuable space and memory. Most of these keep running without your knowledge.
You might also have some applications you no longer use or need. It is a good idea to delete such programs to free up disk space and reduce memory usage, making your computer faster and giving you quick access to the files you want.
To remove such useless programs, go to the ‘Programs and Features’ section in the Control Panel and look at the installed items.
You can quickly install all you don’t need while taking care you don’t remove those critical to the hardware. Getting rid of such programs and processes will free up disk space and make your business computer run faster.
2. Increase Hard Drive Storage
If your hard disk drive becomes more than 85 per cent occupied, it can affect the speed and performance of your computer. Check that you always have 15 per cent free space on the drive.
If you see that it is almost full, consider removing some programs and files to free up the drive space and improve speed. You can also try and compress large files and delete unwanted files and programs on the computer.
Related: Size vs Size on Disk – Why is there a difference?
Those who use the business computer for extensive tasks should get a big hard drive up to 1TB in size to avoid such problems.
One way to deal with a slow computer is to upgrade the hard drive storage. Also, many cleanup utilities help free up hard drive space by removing old, unwanted, redundant files and programs.
3. Reduce Items Starting Up Automatically
When your computer takes longer to start up, the first thing to do is see what all items start when you power it on. Many programs start automatically and run in the background. They are the programs you use frequently but can slow down your computer by taking up memory.
To handle this, click on ‘Run’ from the ‘Start’ menu and type ‘MSConfig’. A ‘startup’ tab should appear with all the programs set to load automatically upon startup. There should be many programs you might not be aware were running in the background.
From the list, you can either deselect the ones you don’t want to start automatically or click on the option ‘Disable all’ and then select the ones you want to run.
Apart from this, Windows loads many fonts upon startup, slowing down the speed at which the computer starts. To deal with this, click on the ‘Start’ button and type fonts to locate the fonts folder. Uncheck the fonts you don’t require. By reducing the number of items starting up automatically, you can increase the speed of your business computer to a great extent.
4. Add RAM
RAM is the temporary memory a computer utilizes to run programs. As the number of programs increases, more memory is being used. If your system does not have sufficient RAM, it can experience a slowdown, mainly when working with large files or executing multiple functions simultaneously.
A clear sign of insufficient RAM is when the computer slows down every time you process big files. You may also see that the computer freezes when you try to multi-task.
5. Remove Viruses and Malware
Malicious programs, such as viruses, spyware, trojans, and adware, can affect your computer’s performance and speed to a great extent. Such programs often run in the background and adversely affect your system.
Malware consumes a lot of memory to keep running all the time, leaving little resources for other programs. This can degrade the performance of other functions and programs on your computer.
Related: 10 of the best antivirus software packages for business
If you are experiencing a sluggish computer, you should ensure your system is not infected by such software. One of the best ways to address this problem is to install a good antivirus program, schedule it to run regularly, and keep it updated.
If you see frequent notifications and flags about corruption, you can scan your computer using the installed antivirus software or get an additional malware detection program.
6. Delete Temporary Files
Temporary files are created whenever you visit pages on the internet from your browser. Once you leave the website, you no longer require those files.
However, they keep sitting on the drive, occupying valuable space. Such files also come from other programs and tasks you run every day on your computer and can slow it down.
Getting rid of these files is a great way to free up several megabytes of hard disk space and speed up the computer.
Program files, internet history, cookies, cache, and other temporary files can be removed permanently, either manually or automatically through a utility.
To do this, go to the ‘Temp’ folder under ‘Windows’ in your C:\ drive from ‘My Computer’ and select all the files older than today’s date and delete. You can go to the Recycle Bin and empty it to delete them permanently. With the freed-up space on the computer, you will operate faster.
7. Run a Disk Clean Up
Your computer creates many temporary files whenever you start it or launch applications. Such files can take up space on your hard disk and slow down the system.
Cleaning up the disk removes these temporary files and frees up space. All the unnecessary files no longer in use are safely deleted so that they don’t leave any traces behind. It also empties the recycle bin to further free up valuable disk space.
Windows computers come with a decluttering tool called ‘Disk Cleanup’ built into the system. When you run this utility, it searches the entire computer for large, unwanted, temporary files like internet files and program installers and removes them permanently.
You can use the Disk Cleanup option from the Accessories under the Start menu to do this. A clean drive would help the computer find files faster and speed it up.
8. Give the PC a Static IP
Another helpful tip to speed up your business computer is to give it a static IP address that remains unchanged. Upon startup, the PC would spend a good time asking the network for an IP address. Giving it a static IP address would help you manage the network quickly and cut the time required to start.
To set up a static IP, navigate to the ‘Network and Sharing Center’ and select ‘Change Adapter Settings’ on your computer. Right-click on the local adapter to ‘Properties’ and find Internet Protocol properties. You should see an option to enter the IP address it should use. Type in the correct address and other details like the default gateway and subnet mask corresponding to the network. Also, make sure you check the option ‘Validate settings upon exit’ so that Windows can look for problems with the address.
9. Defrag the Disk
If the business computer has been running continuously without a break for maintenance, it is possible to become fragmented.
When more and more files are added to the hard drive, the system starts fragmenting and stores parts of files into smaller spaces available. When the file is accessed, the system reassembles the files into one, taking more time than usual.
More and more fragments result in more overhead and sluggish disk performance.
Defragmenting the disk is a solution to this problem. A defrag utility essentially puts all the files stored on the disk into non-fragmented spaces and eliminates empty spaces between files.
Some of these utilities free up space for faster data access and relocate frequently used files to the start of the disk, thereby boosting disk performance and speed of the computer.
One should run this maintenance task regularly or schedule it to perform automatically once a month. However, those who download, install, move and uninstall programs more frequently may need to do it more often. If your laptop or PC seems sluggish or is running slowly, you can check the disk to see if it is highly fragmented.
10. Upgrade to SSD
Finally, you can consider upgrading to a solid-state drive (SSD) as an effective way to speed up your computer. Hard drives are sometimes a significant cause of slow speeds and result in slow startup speeds on the computer.
An SSD can speed up everyday tasks by up to six times. These drives use flash memory to eliminate moving parts in the hard drives so that computers can find files faster and respond quickly.
Making this hardware change is one of the best things you can do to make your business computer run faster. It brings a noticeable difference in performance as everything becomes faster; booting, shutting down, and app launches occur in a blink of an eye.
Though they are not cheap, installing an SSD that has fast read times would speed up the startup to a great extent.
How to make your Business Computers Faster: Final Thoughts
Spending time waiting on a business computer is not only frustrating but can add up a lot of time wastage at work. However, you don’t need to make significant changes like buying a new computer to fix this problem.
A few simple changes can give you instant, lasting results. Try these tips when you notice a slow computer before making any big decisions.