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Computers are indispensable, but as soon as they slow down and problems arise, computers become a confusion-ridden technological beast.

The doom-signaling hourglass or “blue screen” errors may not be so intimidating for computer-savvy individuals, but the majority of computer owners don’t understand them. Your computer can slow down after a few years of use, and knowing what steps to take in that situation can save money on repairs and diagnostics. When troubleshooting a slow computer, there are numerous possible issues you can eliminate by going through a few steps.

Reboot: It’s the simplest solution and often effective. If a computer is frozen or operating at a glacial pace, close all programs and reboot it before doing anything else. Rebooting can clear up minor issues and glitches.

Check hard disk drive space: This is especially pertinent if you download a lot of files or images slowing down your computer. Verify that you have at least 200-500 megabytes of space left on your hard disk drive. To free up space, users can perform a disk-cleanup, or they can uninstall old programs and games.

Scan for malware and viruses: Even if your computer has anti-virus software or an anti-virus scanner, experts recommend running additional malware scans. Viruses can disable functions and programs, not to mention slow down your computer’s processing capacity.

Overheating processor: Today’s high-powered processors produce a lot of heat. If your fan or cooling system isn’t working correctly, your computer will start to slow down and malfunction. Check to see if dust is clogging the fan or if the motor has stopped working. If pieces of the fan are loose, the computer should emit a buzzing or jiggling noise.

Actively update: As inconvenient as it can be, running updates on your computer at regular intervals is an integral piece of computer maintenance. This includes running updates on Windows, browser plug-ins, and drivers. Programs and software will slow down rapidly, take forever to load, and often freeze if they aren’t updated.

Call an expert: Sometimes, users must call the professionals. I offer on-site and remote computer assistance from a certified, trained, and tested expert. For more information, contact me at BrianMayle.com.

About Brian

Brian Mayle has over twenty-five years of experience, providing technical assistance to business professionals and skilled at troubleshooting and fixing problems while minimizing customer stress levels.