Sometimes, slower computers can’t be fixed without dipping a bit into the wallet. While, this site offers the best tips for those who choose to stay away from that route, it comes to a point where it can’t be avoided.
A brief summary of some of the ways to increase system speeds found in this article include:
How To Make Your Computer Run Faster
- Removing Browser Add-Ons and Extensions
- Making More Hard Drive Space
- Replace A Hard Drive That’s Failing
- Disable Startup Programs
- Uninstall Extraneous Software
- Download CCleaner Pro
While software upgrades undoubtedly increase the speed of your PC, hardware upgrades are the absolute best way to get instantaneous performance results. These upgrades definitely won’t break your piggy bank as we chose the most practical and affordable upgrades that give you the most bang for your buck.
Here are 3 ways that you can increase your PC’s speeds by upgrading hardware
1. Buy an SSD
If you have gotten to the point where your hard drive is almost filled to the brim and you have gone through all of the previous tips then here is another solution for you – buy an SSD.
SSDs, or Solid State Drives, are considered better and faster than your typical mechanical hard drive. SSDs don’t rely on magnetism or rotating disks rotating at varying speeds, rather it uses “flash memory”, much like RAM. The only difference between the two is that SSD retains its memory even when the computer shuts down.
Without all the moving parts, the speeds of flash memory in an SSD is very noticeable, especially during the boot up sequence. You can be opening up larger files and documents in a flash, programs open instantly after that initial “double-click”, and best of all, your computer just has an overall better, more responsive feel to it.
SSDs are found more commonly in newer laptop or some computer models due to their lightning fast functionality. They can also be found in a size of 2.5”, making it easily compatible to swap in for laptops. These components are one of the essential ways to make your system more responsive. A small piece of hardware can pack a huge punch in terms of performance improvement.
I currently use the 240GB version of the Samsung EVO to store my OS and my day-to-day programs so that I can access them easily and it boots up in a blink of an eye. I highly recommend it for those who want the same, especially at an affordable price, it makes the perfect investment to get you the speed you need.
The difference between normal hard drives and SSDs is extremely apparent and shines most when I start up my computer and can instantly surf the web in less than 5 seconds after pressing the “Power On” button. My favorite video games are almost always up and loaded in a matter of mere seconds and I’m ready to explore and take down monsters across the world. Or when I’m doing work, I’m able to open a whopping 53-page PDF file in no time at all.
Some SSDs can be on the more expensive side in terms of actual price per storage. But for our suggested hardware upgrades, we made sure that we provided the most practical $/GB of SSDs in our affordable price range. Around the time of the publication of this post, the most bang for your buck SSDs tend to cap out at about 500GB. But there are plenty of ways around that storage limitation, since the norm for storage these days is around 1TB of storage space, and opt for a much cheaper SSD that still meets your “faster pc” needs. It is possible to have an SSD and an HDD at the same time, but the computer capabilities often vary.
If you find that your computer can’t have both drives, a great and affordable alternative is cloud storage. I have an article coming up that focuses on an in-depth examination that should answers all the questions possible about cloud storage, so stay tuned!
If you’d like to know more in-depth information regarding how SSD’s work, their cost-effectiveness, alternatives to add more storage, and the different kinds of solid state drives, click here for a full post.
2. Add More Memory (RAM)
If you’re unable to run simple programs and your computer is still slow, I recommend increasing your memory by adding more RAM. This is actually one of the cheaper components that you can upgrade for boosts in performance. I find that the older the computer, the cheaper the RAM is. And while that is true, I notice limitations of memory that computers can hold.
RAM (Random Access Memory) is what basically allows you to run multiple programs or programs that eat up a lot of memory, such as Photoshop or video editing software. RAM sticks are one of the easier computer parts to add but if you don’t want to do it yourself, then there’s no shame in finding a computer guy who can. The maximum amount of ram I’d recommend to people is 8GB and that’s ensuring that you won’t need any more in the future.
You should definitely notice an increase in PC speed after you install the ram, especially if you had only, say 1GB or 2GB prior.
It’s important to note that finding the perfect RAM for your computer can be a bit tricky as compatibility and other factors determine what RAM is best fit for your motherboard. My article regarding the difference between Memory vs. Storage addresses some of the tips that I recommend when you go RAM shopping and provides more insight to make sure that you don’t go out and waste money on RAM sticks that don’t even fit in your motherboard (Trust me, it isn’t a fun experience in the slightest…).
If you have a computer that can’t even hold a 1GB of RAM, I recommend two things:
- Invest in a whole new system completely. Technology advances every day, and there is only so much that you can do before your tech becomes obsolete. You’ll benefit more from an overall faster, more advanced system that is very likely to be equipped with more upgrades than just the RAM.
- If you’re stubborn (which is understandable), or simply can’t afford a new computer, I’d urge you to consider following my other suggestions in this guide, if you weren’t already, and wholeheartedly maximize each step. When it comes to computers, the good ol’ saying shines: You get out what you put in.
Your system’s RAM is an important factor in seeing a noticeable difference in performance so I highly recommend putting in that new RAM upgrade into your motherboard and bask in the greatness of one of the easiest ways to make your PC run faster and more reliable. This is one of the easiest and economical upgrades that you can do so it is best that you don’t skip out on this one. Otherwise, you’re missing out on some easy speed!
3. Clean Your Computer
When was the last time you opened up the inside of your computer?
If you answered never, and you’ve had your system for a good year or two, you’re going to welcomed with loads of dust. A clean PC can definitely increase speeds and performance. All that dust could be what’s holding your computer back because it’s not getting enough air flow and proper ventilation to cool the CPU. Proper airflow is vital to maintaining your system’s speed and keeping it from future problems such as overheating or slowing down significantly.
The solution is actually quite simple. All you need is a can of compressed air to get the dust and muck out of there. Just make sure that you blow the dust away from the computer as opposed to deeper inside. As trivial as it may seem, I have seen multiple instances where a client sprays the dust directly into the computer and it just flies all over the place, leading to more dirt spread across more components in the system.
When it comes to laptops, it may seem trickier trying to get the dust out of your computer because it can be difficult to get it open. To fix this, I usually just google the model of the laptop and add “how to open”. I’ve had plenty of success with just typing that in to google search – “(laptop model) + how to open”. When you do get it open, simply blow the dust away and enjoy you will be on your way to a faster computer!
The Bottom Line:
When it comes down to finding ways to making your PC run faster and smoother, you really can never go wrong with upgrading the hardware. Improving the components in your system is a sure-fire way to see a boost in performance, and my personal preferred method of upgrades. You can only do so much with software and deleting files, but their capabilities are ultimately limited by your computer’s hardware capacities. Poor quality computers will provide poor quality results and performance.
Add a faster and reliable storage component (SSD), throw in a few more GB of Memory (RAM), and bring out the big guns to dispel that dust out of your system. Go through with these affordable hardware upgrades, and I guarantee that your computer will feel like a whole brand new system – even better than when you had first bought it.