If your computer is 3 to 5 years old, and you’re not ready to buy a new one, this blog’s for you.
Back up your data before you do anything else!
Then, start with an assessment of what you have. If you didn’t make any upgrades to the original system, you can Google the part number of the unit “Specs for HP 5LA11UT#ABA” for example.
- What type and size of hard drive does it have?
- How much memory does it have?
- What is the processor type and speed?
- What operating system are you using?
If you have an Intel i3, i5 or i7 processor, your system may qualify for the fountain of youth. If you have a Pentium or AMD processor, you may want to start saving for that new computer…. but there are still a few things you can do to optimize your system’s performance.
All computers will benefit from some basic computer maintenance tips. Please see my blog about that! Maintenance Blog Defragmenting your hard drive, cleaning up temp files, deleting files you no longer need are just the tip of the iceberg, so please read that blog and follow those steps first.
The computer component most prone to failure is the hard drive. If your computer is 3 to 5 years old you may have a SATA, mechanical-type hard drive. This is a drive with moving parts, that takes a while to boot up, read to and write to files, and because of those moving parts, it’s more prone to failure.
Consider upgrading to a new Solid State Drive or SSD. This uses technology on a chip to store data. It boots up and stores data extremely fast. Don’t forget to back up your entire drive first or have your local computer store do a data transfer to the new drive.
If you are running Windows 10 (or for that matter, Windows 7) and only have 4GB of Memory, you should upgrade to 8GB if your machine can expand. Many people who bought systems with Windows 7 took advantage of the free Windows 10 upgrade but it requires most of 4GB of RAM just to function. Buying and installing RAM is tricky. There are many types and speeds of RAM (DDR2, DDR3, DDR4, buffered, unbuffered, ECC, non-ECC, 204-Pin, 260-Pin, PCL-12800 and many more) and your motherboard will take a specific type; best to let an expert assist with this this too!
Performing computer software maintenance and (assuming your computer is upgradable), upgrading to an SSD and additional RAM, can give your computer a new life.