Slow Computer? Try Rebooting!
Paul Watson, PC Technician Friday, February 17th 2012
Simple Fixes Can Help
What can you do to address a slow or non-responsive computer? If the problem has just cropped up, slow computer performance may be resolved by a simple reboot of the computer. Although it doesn’t seem like it, a reboot can clear out a lot of problems that develop either without warning or very slowly over time.
Rebooting as a remedy can be very effective, especially for computers that are left on 24 hours a day. If you normally leave your computer on, over time, your computer can accumulate processes that have gotten out of control. The computer can also show the effects of a memory leak caused by programs that don’t manage their memory consumption properly.
Rebooting the computer takes it back to a “known good state.” All applications are shut down and the memory is cleared. Processes that may have gotten out of hand are shut down, and the processor is reset to its factory state.
This is an excellent way to clear out unwanted problems, but surprisingly, it isn’t the first remedy people think of. You might wonder, “Can I get the same effect simply by shutting down applications?” The answer is, “Not always!”
If an application is not handling memory allocation properly, simply shutting it down may not solve the problem. The program may not be able to return the RAM allocation to the computer properly, even when it is shut down. Further, processes that you – the user – are unaware of, may still be running. Shutting down applications should – but doesn’t always kill the processes that are associated with the program, and some “programs” can’t be shut down, especially if they’re part of the operating system, or they’re designed to run all the time (like plug-ins).
Other processes are deliberately malicious – like viruses – and they won’t shut down on their own. On reboot, these processes may restart themselves, but it will be much easier to detect their presence after a fresh reboot.
For consistent performance, I recommend SpeedUpMyPC 2012. This product not only manages your computer registry and ensures that unnecessary code gets removed, it also optimizes your computer to deliver ideal performance based on the way you use your computer. Optimization is key to good performance, and you’ll get optimized performance with SpeedUpMyPC 2012.
Photo Credit: wetwebwork, via Flickr