How can I fix a slow Windows XP computer?

crazy rag August 7, 2010
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I’m encountering an issue with Windows XP. I’ve been using this system for more than six years. Now the system is slow.

I already used registry cleaner and antivirus program to overcome this issue. All the files are kept on a different hard drive, so the system drive is not full.

I’m a student and I don’t have money to buy a new computer. Please help me with some guidelines to overcome this issue.  Can I use Linux to solve this problem?

  1. Ric
    September 1, 2010 at 8:11 pm

    How much ram do you have? If it's less than 1gigabyte then add some more. It's cheap and easy to do. I found mrmemory.co.uk very helpful. A 1gigabyte ram card was £18 and pc now back to normal. My suspicion is that recent Microsoft security upgrades have caused the pc to slow down but I can't be sure.

  2. Mike1
    August 21, 2010 at 8:25 am

    Yea I recommend installing Ubuntu, Linux doesn't have virus problems like Windows does. Unless you absolutely need Windows for gaming purposes or whatever, you're better off with Linux.

  3. Alka_trash
    August 21, 2010 at 7:57 am

    Install Linux!

    http://www.ubuntu.com/
    -It's free
    -Doesn't slow down over time like Windows
    -No need for Anti-spyware or Anti-Virus programs ( Like Mac )
    -Not good for gaming, but that's what a Xbox is for.
    -Never need to clean registry or defrag.

    Good luck

  4. Kevinb478
    August 21, 2010 at 5:26 am

    you don't really need to uninstall any programs or do a clean install of your operating system like some of these other people here have suggested if you can afford it go to
    http://www.uniblue.com and you can download the programs SPEED UP MY PC 2010 and also download REGISTRY BOOSTER 2010 or you can download the power suite which will give you 4 programs for $59.95 or you can just download the ones you want and pay for then to be able to use the full benefits of the programs I have been using REGISTRY BOOSTER and SPEED UP MY PC for years and it is microsoft certified these program will not delete anything it is not suppose to and by default it puts it in your trash bin just in case something goes wrong you can restore it and it also makes a back up of everything is cleans out
    another good program is called advance system care from http://www.iobit.com it is a free program but if you want to use the advance features you can buy the program but the free version works very well also cleaning your system will help

    • skeptik
      August 23, 2010 at 7:28 am

      Uniblue causes crash and rougue spyware software to be bought. DO NOT LOAD.

  5. Patrick
    August 20, 2010 at 2:50 pm

    Jack Cola is on the money...!

    msconfig... disable any service in the services menu that isn't Microsoft related. Check your system "startup" configuration and untick a load of the boxes that start up at boot time. A lot of these services are unesscessary.
    Can you upgrade your RAM, older RAM could be expensive though as it's not produced anymore and so goes up in price. CCleaner from Piriform.com is my favourite and of course a good defrag app like defraggler also from Piriform.com Open your case and remove the dust from your fan, this should be done every six months or so. Make sure you wear an anti-static strap though before you open your case or ground yourself. Frying your mainboard is not going to help.

  6. Zcompguy
    August 20, 2010 at 2:41 pm

    If you are going to uninstall programs, the best one I've found is Revo Uninstaller. I always use the advanced option, because it searches for and finds Everything left behind on your computer, from the apps to the registry. It's great.

  7. Bob Royce
    August 20, 2010 at 2:39 pm

    Also you may tons of temp files and Internet Cache files that need to be cleaned out. I found an GREAT program for cleaning them out.

    http://www.stevengould.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=15&Itemid=69

  8. Jack Cola
    August 14, 2010 at 6:59 am

    Format and re-install the OS will do the trick. Also run MSCONFIG (just type that in run) and disable any startup programs that you don't really need to run when you boot.

  9. Highlyeducatedredneck
    August 14, 2010 at 1:40 am

    If you are game for it ....

    1. Get a new hdd. I am assuming that your six-year old computer would require a PATA hard-drive rather than the newer SATA hard-drive.
    2. Pull out your Windows hdd from the comp and put it away in a safe place
    3. Install the new hdd you got (in step 1) into your computer.
    4. Get a Linux live-cd (Fedora, Ubuntu, etc)
    5. Install Linux onto the new hdd.
    6. Once Linux is installed and up-n-running, you can access most/all the data on your Windows XP hdd (the one you removed in step 2) by connecting that hdd over USB to your computer.

    HTH!

  10. Josh Fox
    August 8, 2010 at 1:41 am

    I've found that running a good antivirus, antimalware, and registry cleaner usually do the trick. Clamwin, SuperAntiSpyware, and CCleaner are my tools of choice. However, I agree with Tina that 6 years is far too long for the same installation. Also, a good physical cleaning is a good idea. Dust on the RAM, CPU, drives, motherboard, and in the fans can also slow down a system.

    If all else fails, I've found switching to a lighter OS is good for older computers. Ubuntu and especially Xubuntu will speed things up, but that's only if you want to try a different OS.

    • Tina
      August 11, 2010 at 7:37 pm

      As Josh points out, physical cleaning of your machine could indeed help to speed up your system, especially if your CPU uses speed-step technology.

      When you remove the dust from the hardware, it won't heat up as much and as a result, its lifetime is extended. A CPU can actually slow down or even shut down when it gets too hot.

      • Aibek
        August 13, 2010 at 12:57 pm

        1 - do the physical cleaning
        2 - uninstall ALL apps you don't use
        3 - install and run Cleaner and some defragmenter software. My personal favorite is Auslogics Disk Defragmenter.
        4 - If you don't notice any significant speed difference then try a clean reinstall.

  11. Tina
    August 7, 2010 at 10:41 pm

    Crazy rag,we had a similar question previously. Check out the answers here: http://www.makeuseof.com/answers/find-computer-...Other than cleaning the registry and scanning for malware that potentially slows down your computer, you could also try to de-fragment your system drive.Using an installation for six years is an extremely long time! Imagine how many programs you installed and uninstalled, how many changes must have been made to the registry. So if you can't fix the system speed using software, you might have to reinstall Windows XP.All you need is your Windows XP serial number and an installation CD. You can possibly borrow the CD from someone in case you don't have one. See this question for details: http://www.makeuseof.com/answers/reinstall-xp-o...

    Don't forget to make a backup of your data!!!

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