Tag: Desktop

Tips for speeding up a slow PC

Tips for speeding up a slow PC:

Over the time, the speed of computers can decrease. This appears as the system taking more time to respond to a user’s actions like opening files, folders, surfing the Internet and other tasks. Here are a few steps which are helpful to make your machine (especially Windows machines) run faster.

Clean up the Desktop: 

Each time Windows starts; operating memory is used to open your profile. The total amount of memory used will be small. If however, there are several or dozens of files on the Desktop lot of operating memory is used by these files, essentially for no purpose or gain. With less memory available, the computer runs slower because it has to swap out information from operating memory to the hard drive. It does this process (called memory paging) to keep everything the user wants to do running at the same time.

The simple action of cleaning the Desktop will make your computer run faster.

Clean up the disk and registry:

One of the first things to check on a machine that’s running slowly is how much of the hard disk has been used. If there isn’t roughly 10% of the hard disk free, it’s time to clean the HDD. One of the tools I like is CCleaner. It quickly clears out all temp files for you. 

Remove Spyware/Malware:

One of the most common causes of the “my PC used to be fast, and now it isn’t!” complaint is actually the presence of malware. Malware can sneak onto a computer in a zillion different ways and quite often it sits in the background slowing your machine as it sends out spam emails, searches for other computers to infect, works on cracking cryptography, or performs any number of the other nefarious tasks that hackers like to use their botnet slaves for.

Try a different browser:

Different browsers perform differently, and most people spend a lot of time on their Web browser. Some browsers perform well on some but poorly on others, even when they are supposed to test the same thing. The problem with the benchmarks is that what they usually test is not real work performance! While JavaScript is an important part of the modern Web, few Web applications beat on the JavaScript engine hard enough to produce a noticeable impact on performance. If you want to have your Web browser feel more responsive and lively, consider a switch to Chrome.

Add a faster DNS lookup Server:

Most ISPs love to brag about how much bandwidth they are giving you. But they don’t mind letting the rest of their infrastructure slowly get overwhelmed or deteriorate. Among the biggest offenders are the DNS servers our ISPs use. If you want to know why things seem to take forever to start loading, slow DNS servers are often the cause. Consider adding a fast DNS server as your primary DNS server in your TCP/IP settings. Google’s Public DNS server is a great option.

Defragmentation:

Defragmentation is the process of physically organizing the contents of the mass storage device used to store files in to the smallest number of contiguous regions.

Visualization of fragmentation and then of defragmentation

Defragmentation places all parts of a file together in the same place on the drive. It organizes all directories and files according to how you use your computer. After this process is complete, your computer will most likely run faster.

Following precautions should be taken before doing defragmentation:

 Make sure your data is backed up to another medium like pen drive, DVD or external HDD.

 Close all the running programs including virus scanner.

 Assure your computer has a constant source of power.  If you have frequent power outages, you should not use a defragmentation program without a battery backup. Note: If your computer does shut off while defragmenting, it may crash the hard drive or corrupt the operating system, or both.

Steps for Defragmentation:    
  1. Open My Computer.
  2. Right-click the local disk volume that you want to defragment, and then click Properties.
  3. On the Tools tab, click Defragment Now.
  4. Click Defragment.

Improve Your Hardware:

If your computer is slow, it may be because your hardware isn’t getting the job done. How will you find that out? By using the Windows Experience Index, found in Windows Vista and Windows 7. This will show you where your computer is weak, and what you would need to beef up to turn your PC into a screamer.

Go to Start –> Control Panel — > System and Security –> under System click on Check the Windows Experience Index

Use ReadyBoost:

You can speed up the computer with a flash drive. Through the magic of a Windows technology called ReadyBoost, your PC can see a real speed increase. It’s a little-known Windows secret that can help you zip on down the Information Superhighway, or make whatever you’re doing faster.

Note:  ReadyBoost is available in Windows Vista, and Windows 7 Operating Systems.

source: about.com, Wikipedia, Techrepublic,

Windows XP default wallpaper

Ever wonder where the Windows XP default wallpaper came from?

One of the most famous wallpaper images is undoubtedly the default Windows XP image, showing a blissfully relaxing vista of green rolling hills and a bluer than blue sky. The wallpaper, probably one of the most viewed images of all time, is aptly named ‘Bliss.’ Do a Google image search for just the word ‘bliss,’ and the first result is the Windows wallpaper.

Bliss as seen in a clean Windows XP desktop

Have you ever stopped to wonder where the image was taken, or who took it? In fact, the image is so crisp you might have assumed it wasn’t real at all.

‘Bliss’ is the name of a Windows bitmap image included with Microsoft Windows XP, produced from a photograph of a landscape in Sonoma County, California, southeast of Sonoma Valley near the site of the old Clover Stornetta Inc. Dairy.

The man behind the camera is American photographer Charles O’Rear (born 1941)

The photo was taken in 1996, years before Windows XP launched, and before the area was converted into a vineyard. In fact, a photo taken 10 years later from exactly the same spot where Bliss was shot, shows a disappointingly, dreary view:

The same location November 2006

So how much did O’Rear get for taking what is considered one of the most famous photos of all time? A non-disclosure agreement prevents him from revealing the actual figure, but according to Napa Valley Register, O’Rear stated that it was:

“extraordinary” and second only to that paid to another living, working photographer for the photo of then-President Bill Clinton hugging Monica Lewinsky.

Taken with a medium format camera, the most surprising fact about the image is that O’Rear claims that it wasn’t digitally manipulated.

Source: wikipediathenextweb