By Dewald Smit and Dee During
Waiting for a creaky, tired old computer to chug through a simple task can be extremely frustrating. So what can one do to improve this irksome situation?
When a swift hoof fails, try these quick fixes:
• Uninstall unused programs: PCs come with pre-installed programs. Some of these run in the background without your knowledge, slowing your computer down. To remove these, click “start”, go to “control panel”, click “programs and features”, scroll through the list, uninstalling the ones you never use.
• Delete temporary files: When you use Internet Explorer, all your browsing history remains on your PC. The same thing happens when you install something. To get rid of all this clutter, open “my computer”, select your main drive, click the “windows” folder, then open the folder inside that called “temp”. Use your mouse to right-click on the folder and in the “view” options, choose “details”. Once this is done, select all the files that are older than the current date and press the delete key. Then go to the recycle bin on your desktop and empty it.
• Install a Solid State Drive or SSD: This long-awaited upgrade option has finally arrived. The SSD (as opposed to the existing HDD or spinning hard drives) is a new piece of hardware which is a bit like bolting a turbo booster to your computer. It will supercharge almost any PC and laptop on the market.
Let’s look at the pros of an SSD:
• Quick boot times (less than 20 seconds from pushing your power button to using the PC).
• SSD won’t get damaged by moving it about etc.
• Lower energy consumption, which means less heat and, if using a laptop, longer battery life.
• Silence. SSD’s generate no noise whatsoever.
And now for the cons:
• No more coffee breaks while waiting for your computer to fire up.
• The cost per gigabyte is more than traditional hard-disk drives. However, the costs are well worth it, as it will save you time and frustration, and your computer will be a joy to use.
Bottom line. It’s a lot cheaper than buying a brand new PC or laptop.