Windows 10 is a heavily-optimised operating system and boasts better performance across a wider variety of devices than previous versions of Windows.
However, Windows machines have a habit of slowing down over time due to a variety of factors – both software and hardware related.
Boot times can slow down over time due to an increasing number of apps running at startup, and an inconsistent update schedule can cause some applications to run sub-optimally.
If you are seeing slowdowns or sluggish boot times, here is what you should do.
Keeping your Windows 10 installation up to date is crucial for both security and performance.
Many software updates aim to increase the performance of applications or fix bugs which can cause system slowdowns in certain situations.
Additionally, maintaining a regular update schedule will help protect your machine from malicious applications and will patch vulnerabilities.
Keeping your system updated will also reduce the chance of app incompatibility and will keep your PC healthier for a longer period of time.
Clean startup apps
Many applications are set to run at startup once installed and can have a significant effect on your system’s boot time.
It is a good idea to periodically clean your startup applications to ensure that no unnecessary apps are set to open as soon as you log in to your PC.
To control which applications run at startup, open Task Manager by pressing Control + Shift + Escape, and navigate to the Startup tab.
From here, you can see which apps are set to run at startup and disable programs which you do not use immediately after starting up.
If you find that your hardware sometimes struggles to manage multiple windows, you can get it to run faster by disabling effects.
To begin this process, press the Windows Key + R to open the Run interface, enter “Sysdm.cpl” into the field, and press Enter.
This will open the System Properties Window. Navigate to the Advanced tab and select Settings under the Performance section.
From this window, you can manually adjust visual settings to tweak your Windows 10 effects to your preference, or simply select “Adjust for best performance” to disable all visual effects.
Upgrade RAM or storage
If your Windows 10 performance problems are not due to startup bloatware or a lack of system updates, you may need to upgrade your hardware.
The quickest way to improve the performance of your PC is to upgrade from a mechanical hard drive to a solid state drive (SSD).
SSDs offer increased read and write times, resulting in faster boot times and quicker navigation through storage.
Aditionally, if you often find your PC slowing down while multitasking you may want to upgrade the amount of RAM in your system.
Run system maintenance
Windows 10 features an Automatic Maintenance tool which runs a number of maintenance tasks in the background.
By default, this maintenance feature runs tasks daily at 02:00, and its schedule is configurable from the Settings menu.
If you do not wish to wait until the next scheduled maintenance, you can run the maintenance process manually from this menu.
Additionally, you can also use the disk cleanup feature to remove unnecessary files from storage which may be slowing down your system.
To access Disk Cleanup, select the Local Disk in File Explorer, access the Drive Tools menu, and select the Cleanup option.