Speed Up Windows 7

Windows 7 is already a highly responsive and fast operating system compared to its predecessors.  However, sometimes your system becomes sluggish and you wonder how you can improve its performance.  The reason for this sluggishness may be that you are running Windows 7 on an old or out-of-date PC or maybe there are just too many programs and applications vying for a slice of the CPU. Whatever the reason, there are a number of fixes you can try in order to rejuvenate a slow system running on Windows 7.

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Remove Unused Windows Features and Programs

Whenever you buy a laptop or a PC, your system will usually have quite a few ‘try before you buy’ and trial versions of software preinstalled. Also, you might have downloaded other applications and programs from the internet. Each program installed on your PC uses system resources. Installing programs you never really use drains those resources uselessly and slows down your computer. Uninstall and remove all such software that you no longer use. You can do this by going to the control panel and then selecting ‘Programs’ followed by clicking the ‘Uninstall a Program’ option. Many of the features of Windows also take a huge bite off the system’s resources. You can turn off the features you do not use by going to the Control Panel, selecting the ‘Program’ option and then clicking the ‘Turn Windows Feature on or off’ option.  Check out our instructions on how to remove “Bloatware” from your PC.

Adjust your System’s Visual Effects

A good looking Windows 7 OS is not a quick Windows 7 OS. Many of the visual effects significantly slow down the system’s performance. To improve your system’s performance, you will have to adjust the visual effects of your system. Go to the Control Panel and locate the ‘Performance’ option and click on ‘Adjust the appearance and performance of Windows’ from the ‘System’ category. The window seen here will pop up. Now click on the ‘Adjust for best performance’ option to optimize the visual effects. You can even customize the system for the visual effects you want.

Adjust Your System’s Indexing Options

Windows 7 constantly indexes locations and drives, where it thinks you look for items or files, even including all the folders in Libraries. You need to tweak your system so that Windows only indexes those areas where you actually search often. For modifying the settings, you need to go to the Control Panel. Now search for Indexing and click on the ‘Indexing Options’. Now select ‘Modify’. A dialogue box will pop up. Click on the ‘Show all locations’. Uncheck all the locations, except the areas where you search often.

Change Windows7 Indexing Locations

Defrag Your System

Another way of enhancing the performance of Windows 7 is defragmenting your system. Defragging will help get rid of junk files and the hard disk will run more efficiently. The contents of the hard drive are reorganized physically, so they can be arranged in a logically optimized manner while saving space.

Keep these tips in mind before running off to a techie to get your PC fixed. Just implement these easy steps and juice up your system.

Disable Windows Aero

The Windows Aero demands a lot of working space from your computer, apart from a descent video card. However, older computers fare badly with Aero. Although the glass and translucent effects of Aero may look good, it drains the system of a valuable resource. To disable Aero, right click anywhere on your desktop and click ‘Personalize’.

This will open up the Personalization applet on the Control Panel. You can use this to change themes, color schemes, icons and other settings related to appearance. Scroll down till you come to the Basic and High Contrast Themes.  Click on any of the  available themes to apply. This will improve your system’s performance considerably.

  1. Disable the Windows “Aero” Effects
    The Aero interface may be beautiful, but it has demanding graphics requirements. Windows 7 will disable it by default if your graphics card isn’t capable, but even if it is, you might find the speed tradeoff unacceptable. Place your cursor on a blank space on the desktop and right-click to bring up the pop-up menu. Scroll down and select “Personalize” to bring up the Personalization menu. Within the menu, select “Window Color and Appearance.” Select the “Open classic appearance properties or more color options” link and select any theme other than Windows Aero under the “Color Scheme” section. Click “Apply” and then click “OK.”
  2. Turn Off “Glass Transparency”
    Glass transparency is an effect in the Windows Aero interface that makes Windows transparent so you can see the content behind it with an added visual effect. This effect is purely cosmetic and offers no functionality – but it does consume much of your system’s resources.  If you don’t have a top-notch processor or enough RAM, you may want to disable the effect which will reduce memory usage and increase performance.

    To disable Aero, right-click the desktop and select “Personalize.” Click “Window Color and Appearance,” and then on the next screen uncheck “Enable Transparency”. Click “Save Changes” to apply the changes. You should experience better visual settings and performance now.

  3. Turn Off Animations and Visual Effects
    Another simple setting to tweak is to simply turn off the animations and other visual effects – like much of Windows, these options are flashy, purely cosmetic, and a draw on your PC’s system resources.
  4. Disable the Sidebar (Widgets)
    Widgets are will place a strain on your system memory – ridding yourself of them will help speed up Windows 7.  Who really uses those useless widgets anyways? If I am on my PC, I am computing, not staring at the sidebar!  To disable the sidebar, right click on the sidebar or sidebar icon, and select “properties”.  Next, uncheck the “Start Sidebar when Windows starts” checkbox.

Personalize Windows 7

You can further customize your PC’s Color Scheme or manually select a “Theme”.  Some of the pre-configured Themes include: Windows Vista Basic (a slimmed-down version of the flashy Windows Aero Theme) and Windows Vista Classic (the most trimmed-down, most efficient and least resource-draining Theme).  Select your Themes by clicking the Start Button, select Control Panel –> Appearance and Personalization –> Change the Color Scheme.

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