Hey there my Noob Alliance!
This one is for all the happy owners of laptops out there!
As a laptop owner, the chances are pretty good that you have faced the frustration of waiting forever for it to start up or for it to open a program.
This can be mind boggling if your laptop is brand new or if it’s “internals” are supposed to be “fast”… So how can you make a laptop run faster without running to the store straight away to get upgrades?
Fear not, there is still hope for your laptop! Here are a 5 free frustration-busting tweaks that may help. Try these before losing all hope and fetching a hammer. (Just kidding, leave that hammer alone – 😉 ).
Noob Tip: Remember to check which version of Windows OS you are using because the instructions are slightly different for each version.
PS. Back up your computer before getting your hands dirty with changing Windows settings!
1. Squeezing as much as we can out with Power Plan settings!
Laptops are set up by default to change the power plan to conserve battery, but this is at the cost of performance aka “speed”. If your laptop is kept plugged in to a power source most of the time and/or you favour speed over battery life then try the following.
(Remember, you can always change the setting back to default if you want to, so don’t be afraid to make changes).
- Click on the Start Button (The button that looks like a flag at the bottom left-hand side of your desktop)
- Using your keyboard, type in “Power Plan”. Your PC will now display search results
- Click on “Edit Power Plan“
- The Power Options Window will open
- You will have a few power plans listed here, select High Performance
- Close the window by clicking the “X” at the top right-hand corner of the “Power Options” window
2. Close “Superfetch” (more like “not-superfetch”)
Superfetch is a Windows background program that was intended to help create a smoother computing experience for users.
However, I remember suffering from serious slowness a while ago on a computer that had zero excuse to be slow – so I tried this advice I found online (because I’m a Google-geek) and it fixed the problem perfectly.
It was utilizing 100% of the processor! (Aka . the brain of a computer).
To close superfetch follow these steps:
- Right click on the task-bar
- Click Task Manager (This app displays all the programs running in the foreground and background of your computer)
- Click on the tab at the top that says Services
- At the bottom of this tab click Open Services
- Sort this long list alphabetically by clicking on Name at the top the “Name” column
- Go down the list and look for “Superfetch“
- Right click on Superfetch and click “Stop“
This will stop Superfetch from running until you restart your PC. If you found that this tip worked for you, and you don’t feel like doing it every time you’ve restarted your PC, follow these instructions until the very last point and then:
- Right click on Superfetch and click Properties
- Change the startup type to Disabled and click Ok
3. Check & Disable Startup Programs
It is common for laptop manufacturers to include programs on laptops that start with Windows and run in the background.
As time goes on and you install more programs, some of these programs are set to start with Windows as well, even though you don’t need to have them running all the time. Silly right?
This can slow down your computer’s startup time and it can fill up your computer’s memory making things feel laggy!
Let’s close those pesky memory-hogs, follow these steps:
- Right click on the task-bar
Click Task Manager
- Click on the Startup tab
- The “Status” column indicates whether a particular program is set to start with Windows
- The “Startup Impact” column indicates how much a particular program affects the speed at which your computer loads Windows.
- Right click on the programs you don’t need loaded/running in the background and click Disable
- PS – Don’t disable programs that sound like they may be related to your Anti-virus – see tip below!
Noob Tip: If you are not sure whether you need a particular program to start with Windows, do a Google search with the name of the program “Do I need “_______” to start with Windows?”.
Considering buying a new laptop instead of trying to get your old one to co-operate? Here are some budget-friendly ones I’ve picked out for my Noob Alliance – have a look!
4. Do You Have Too Many Open Windows?
Every computer has something commonly referred as “memory” or RAM. Some have more memory than others.
We can think of this as work space. The more windows/programs you have open at once, the more the work space fills up and becomes cluttered. The computer becomes slower as it has to keep swapping items in its work-space back & forth.
A quick remedy to this problem is to close any programs you are not using at the time, and to only have programs running that you are actually using at any given time.
For example, you might have one or more word documents open that you want to get back to working on later. Rather, save and close it for the time being until you are ready to work on it again.
Take a look at your task-bar, you will notice the different tasks open at the bottom. Close the ones you are not using.
Noob Tip: 9 out of 10 times it is possible to increase our laptop memory! Nowadays it’s recommended to have at least 4 Gigabytes of RAM and 8 Gigabytes for really smooth sailing. Now I know this isn’t a free fix – but for a relatively inexpensive fix it can make a big difference. Be sure to check your laptop’s memory specs and requirements before buying anything!
5. Is Google Chrome Running in the Background?
If it feels like your laptop is sometimes speedy and other times not so much, it might be useful to note whether Google Chrome is open when your laptop feels a bit on the laggy side.
Often Chrome may load a bunch of extensions, such as ad blockers etc, along with the main program.
Also, the more tabs you have open the more memory Chrome will consume.
If your computer has lower specifications, it is a good idea to only have Chrome open when you need to browse the web and to close it when you don’t need it open.
Always A Solution For Everything!
Hopefully some of these tips help ease your frustrations as they did mine.
There’s so much that goes on behind the scenes that computer users aren’t aware of and a lot can (and does) go pear-shaped sometimes.
Luckily the fixes often aren’t difficult to carry out and even newbies can attempt it – plus it’s excellent practice to get those geek-skills flowing!
There are plenty more things to try if you haven’t found success yet! I will keep posting and sharing more helpful info and tips, so keep checking back for more. 😉
Here at Computer Noob Guru we find solutions, and destroy problems!
Now hit that comment section below and let me know if any of these tweaks worked for you? Or perhaps you have a question that I can answer with my geek superpowers?
Whatever the case may be, I love hearing from you – so leave me some love!