How to Clean and Speed up Your Windows Computer

Over time, computers slow down. Of course aging hardware plays a part, but for most people, a more common cause is poor operating system maintenanceHere’s the ultimate checklist for cleaning your Windows computer.

Delete Unused Software

The first step is removing all the old software you no longer use. If you’re not a “diligent deleter,” you’ll be amazed at how much unnecessary stuff you have installed on your machine.

To see all the apps on your computer, go to Start > Settings > Apps > Apps and features. Scroll down the list and click Uninstall on anything you don’t need.

Clearly, you need to exercise a touch of caution. Don’t just get rid of stuff you don’t recognize — run a Google search first to ensure it’s safe to delete!

Clean up the Disk

To run Disk Cleanup, either type the program’s name in the Start Menu or go to Control Panel > Administrative Tools > Disk Cleanup.

The best Disk Cleanup software I’ve ever use are Ccleaner and Glary Disk Cleaner.

CCleaner is the number-one tool for cleaning your PC. It protects your privacy and makes your computer faster and more secure!

Glary Disk Cleaner is a freeware with registry and disk cleaning, privacy protection, performance accelerator and amazing multifunctional tools. It can fix dogged registry errors, wipe off clutters, optimize internet speed, safeguard confidential files and maintain maximum performance.

Run Antivirus Software

You should also run your antivirus software. One of the most common causes of slow computers is viruses. There are many good antivirus software, like Malwarebytes, rather than focusing on viruses, its primary goal is protecting users against the latest trojans, backdoors, adware, and spyware.

Defragment the Hard Drive

In Windows 10, the operating system runs disk defragmentation when it senses it is required. However, as we’re doing a thorough clean of your computer, it would be remiss not to run it manually.

You can find the Defragment and Optimize Drives tool by running a search or by going to Control Panel > Administrative Tools.

Optimize Windows Drivers

Refresh Your Startup List

Any seasoned Windows user knows that the operating system lags way behind macOS, Chrome OS, and Linux when it comes to boot times. Typically, the problem is caused by the number of programs Windows tries to launch when it first starts. The majority of them are unnecessary.

Windows Task Manager Start-up Items

To clean your startup list, press Ctrl + Alt + Delete and select Task Manager. On the new window, click More Details, then choose the Startup tab at the top of the screen.

You should now be looking at all the apps Windows tries to run at boot. To disable an app, highlight the appropriate row and click Disable.

Clean the AppData Folder

When you uninstall an app, you’ll often find remnants of its former presence dotted around your machine. One of the most common locations is the AppData folder.

By default, the folder is hidden. You can find it at C:\Users\[Username]\AppData or by typing %AppData% into Windows search.

Remove Old Program Files

The other place you’ll often find trace elements of old apps’ files is in the Program Files folders.

On most machines, there are two Program Files folders. You can find them at C:\Program Filesand C:\Program Files (x86).

As with the AppData folder, work through the contents of each folder carefully and delete any files and folders that are no longer in use.

Clean the Registry

Registry Repair is the most efficient registry cleaning software to fix registry problems. It works with all Windows Operating Systems and scans Windows Registry quickly with comprehensive analysis.