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How to Speed Up Your Windows PC

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It shouldn’t take ten minutes just to boot up.

Every time I booted up the family Compaq computer as a kid, the full boot-up process would take around ten minutes. I’d usually press the power button, then go into the other room for a few minutes and watch TV just to waste some time. When we upgraded that computer and boot-up only took about one minute, I was shocked. I thought that endless boot-ups were just a computer thing.

If your PC is taking an eternity to boot up, I can assure you it’s not just a “computer thing.” Something is undoubtedly slowing things down, and odds are good the problem is software based. See, when your computer first boots up, it opens all of its launch apps in the background. This includes all of the vital guts like Windows Explorer, as well as stuff you set to open at launch yourself like chatting apps. The more apps and software are set to open at launch, the longer the boot process will take. If you open up your task manager with ctrl+alt+delete, you can check the startup tab to see what apps are set to open at launch. If there are any oddly big programs or stuff you don’t need to be open from the word go, take them off the list.

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If your computer is chugging during regular use, there may be apps throttling processes. Your PC only has so much operating power, determined by its built-in RAM. If too many resource-intensive apps are open, your computer won’t be able to run the things you actually need. Again, open the task manager and check the list of running programs. You can organize the list by how much memory the programs are taking up; anything that’s gobbling more than its fair share, close it down. This is also a good way to ferret out things like adware that may be siphoning processing power without your consent.