How to Troubleshoot A Slow Windows Laptop?

19 minutes read

A slow Windows laptop can be frustrating, but there are several ways to troubleshoot and improve its performance. Here are some general steps you can take:

  1. Check for malware: Malware can slow down your laptop significantly. Run a full scan with a reliable antivirus program to check for any infections and remove them if found.
  2. Remove unnecessary startup programs: Many applications launch automatically during startup, which can slow down your laptop. Open the Task Manager by right-clicking on the taskbar and selecting "Task Manager." Go to the "Startup" tab and disable programs that you don't need to launch during startup.
  3. Clean up your hard drive: Over time, your hard drive can get cluttered with temporary files, unused applications, and unnecessary data. Open the Disk Cleanup tool by searching for it in the Windows Start menu. Select your main drive, usually C:, and follow the prompts to remove unnecessary files.
  4. Manage your installed applications: Uninstall any programs that you no longer use or need. Open the Control Panel, go to "Programs" or "Programs and Features," and uninstall applications you don't need. Be cautious to avoid removing essential system files.
  5. Disable visual effects: Windows uses various visual effects that can consume system resources. To disable them, right-click on "This PC" or "My Computer" and choose "Properties." In the Performance section, click on "Settings," select "Adjust for best performance," and click "Apply."
  6. Update Windows and device drivers: Keeping your Windows operating system and device drivers up to date can improve performance. Go to the Settings app, select "Update & Security," and click on "Check for updates." Install any available updates.
  7. Increase virtual memory: If your laptop has low RAM, increasing virtual memory can help improve performance. Search for "Performance" in the Windows Start menu, select "Adjust the appearance and performance of Windows," go to the "Advanced" tab, and click on "Change" under Virtual Memory. Adjust the settings accordingly and click "Set."
  8. Upgrade hardware: If your laptop is still slow after trying the steps above, consider upgrading its hardware. Adding more RAM or replacing the hard drive with a solid-state drive (SSD) can significantly improve performance.


Remember, these steps provide general guidance, and results may vary based on your laptop's specific configuration.

Best Windows Laptops to Buy in February 2024

1
HP Pavilion Laptop, 15.6" FHD Touchscreen, 13th Gen Intel Core i7-1355U Processor, 32GB RAM, 1TB PCIe SSD, Webcam, Fingerprint Reader, Backlit KB, Wi-Fi 6, Windows 11 Pro, Blue

Rating is 5 out of 5

HP Pavilion Laptop, 15.6" FHD Touchscreen, 13th Gen Intel Core i7-1355U Processor, 32GB RAM, 1TB PCIe SSD, Webcam, Fingerprint Reader, Backlit KB, Wi-Fi 6, Windows 11 Pro, Blue

  • 【High Speed RAM And Enormous Space】32GB high-bandwidth DDR4 RAM to smoothly run multiple applications and browser tabs all at once; 1TB PCIe NVMe M.2 Solid State Drive allows to fast bootup and data transfer.
  • 【Processor】13th Gen Intel Core i7-1355U Processor (10 Cores, 12 Threads, Base Frequency at 1.2GHz, Up to 5.0GHz at Max Turbo Frequency), with Intel Iris Xe Graphics
  • 【Display】15.6" diagonal, FHD (1920 x 1080) Touchscreen, IPS, micro-edge, anti-glare, 250 nits
  • 【Tech Specs】1x USB Type-C 3.0, 2x USB Type-A 3.0, 1x HDMI, 1x Headphone/mic combo; Backlit Keyboard (On: F11); Fingerprint Reader; Wi-Fi 6 + Bluetooth;
  • 【Operating System】Windows 11 Pro - Organize open apps with pre-configured layouts to optimize productivity, Navigate with more intuitive experience to get things done, Collaborate with teams with more features
2
Lenovo V15 Laptop, 15.6" FHD Display, AMD Ryzen 5 5500U Hexa-core Processor (Beat Intel i7-1065G7), 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD, HDMI, RJ45, Numeric Keypad, Wi-Fi, Windows 11 Pro, Black

Rating is 4.9 out of 5

Lenovo V15 Laptop, 15.6" FHD Display, AMD Ryzen 5 5500U Hexa-core Processor (Beat Intel i7-1065G7), 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD, HDMI, RJ45, Numeric Keypad, Wi-Fi, Windows 11 Pro, Black

  • 【High Speed RAM And Enormous Space】16GB high-bandwidth RAM to smoothly run multiple applications and browser tabs all at once; 512GB PCIe NVMe M.2 Solid State Drive allows to fast bootup and data transfer
  • 【Processor】AMD Ryzen 5 5500U Processor (6 Cores, 12 Threads, 8MB L3 Cache, Clock Speed:2.1GHz, up to 4.0GHz Turbo)
  • 【Display】15.6" diagonal, FHD (1920 x 1080)
  • 【Tech Specs】1 x USB 3.0 Type-A, 1 x USB 2.0 Type-A, 1 x USB Type-C, 1 x HDMI, 1 x RJ45, 1 x headphone/microphone combo, Numeric Keyboard, Webcam, Wi-Fi
  • 【Operating System】Windows 11 Pro-Get all the features of Windows 11 Home operating system plus Mobile device management, Group Policy, Enterprise State Roaming, Assigned Access, Dynamic Provisioningm, Windows Update for Business, Kiosk mode, and Active Directory/Azure AD
3
ASUS ROG Strix G16 (2023) Gaming Laptop, 16” 16:10 FHD 165Hz, GeForce RTX 4070, Intel Core i9-13980HX, 16GB DDR5, 1TB PCIe SSD, Wi-Fi 6E, Windows 11, G614JI-AS94, Eclipse Gray

Rating is 4.8 out of 5

ASUS ROG Strix G16 (2023) Gaming Laptop, 16” 16:10 FHD 165Hz, GeForce RTX 4070, Intel Core i9-13980HX, 16GB DDR5, 1TB PCIe SSD, Wi-Fi 6E, Windows 11, G614JI-AS94, Eclipse Gray

  • POWER UP YOUR PLAY - Draw more frames and win more games with Windows 11, a 13th Gen Intel Core i9-13980HX processor, and an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4070 Laptop GPU at 140W Max TGP..Anti-glare display, Refresh Rate: 240Hz, Response Time: 3ms, 720P HD camera.
  • BLAZING FAST MEMORY AND STORAGE – Multitask swiftly with 16GB of DDR5-4800MHz memory and speed up loading times with 1TB of PCIe 4x4.
  • ROG INTELLIGENT COOLING – To put this amount of power in a gaming laptop, you need an even better cooling solution. The Strix features Thermal Grizzly’s Conductonaut Extreme liquid metal on the CPU, and a third intake fan among other premium features, to allow for better sustained performance over long gaming sessions.
  • SWIFT VISUALS – The Strix G16 has a fast FHD 165Hz panel to make sure you never miss a moment. It also covers 100% of the sRGB color space and feature Dolby Vision, Adaptive-Sync support, and an 90% screen-to-body ratio for a stellar gaming and viewing experience.
  • MUX SWITCH WITH ADVANCED OPTIMUS - A MUX Switch increases laptop gaming performance by 5-10% by routing frames directly from the dGPU to the display bypassing the iGPU. With Advanced Optimus the switch between iGPU and dGPU becomes automatic based on the task, optimizing battery life.
4
Dell Inspiron 15 3000 3520 Business Laptop Computer[Windows 11 Pro], 15.6'' FHD Touchscreen, 11th Gen Intel Quad-Core i5-1135G7, 16GB RAM, 1TB PCIe SSD, Numeric Keypad, Wi-Fi, Webcam, HDMI, Black

Rating is 4.7 out of 5

Dell Inspiron 15 3000 3520 Business Laptop Computer[Windows 11 Pro], 15.6'' FHD Touchscreen, 11th Gen Intel Quad-Core i5-1135G7, 16GB RAM, 1TB PCIe SSD, Numeric Keypad, Wi-Fi, Webcam, HDMI, Black

  • 【15.6" Full HD Touchscreen】The 1920 x 1080 resolution boasts impressive color and clarity. IPS technology for wide viewing angles. Energy-efficient LED backlight. Designed with tiny rubber feet and bumpers on the hinge that keep it from skidding and provide additional stability.
  • 【11th Gen Intel Core i5-1135G7 Processor】Ultra-low-voltage platform. Quad-core, eight-way processing provides maximum high-efficiency power to go. Your always-ready experience starts as soon as you open your device. Turn on, boot-up, and log-in quickly.
  • 【16GB DDR4 RAM + 1TB PCIe SSD】16GB RAM can smoothly run your games and photo- and video-editing applications, as well as multiple programs and browser tabs all at once. A 1TB NVMe PCIe solid slate drive that leaves the power at your fingertips with the fastest data transfers currently available.
  • 【Easy-to-use Technology】Long-lasting battery and express charge capability, to keep going for longer. Comes with Express Charge capabilities that minimize the time you spend tethered to an outlet and will recharge your battery 80% in 60 minutes. Built-in media reader for simple photo transfer.
  • 【Windows 11 Professional】Experience the most secure Windows ever built with fast boot times, increased responsiveness, and added protection against phishing and malware. Plus, you can switch out of S mode.
5
Microsoft Surface Laptop 5 (2022), 13.5" Touch Screen, Thin & Lightweight, Long Battery Life, Fast Intel i5 Processor for Multi-Tasking, 8GB RAM, 256GB Storage with Windows 11, Platinum

Rating is 4.6 out of 5

Microsoft Surface Laptop 5 (2022), 13.5" Touch Screen, Thin & Lightweight, Long Battery Life, Fast Intel i5 Processor for Multi-Tasking, 8GB RAM, 256GB Storage with Windows 11, Platinum

  • Introducing Copilot on Windows 11, your everyday AI companion - Copilot empowers you to create faster, complete tasks with ease and lessens your cognitive load - making one complicated task, simple.
  • Your style – complemented – Sleek and ultra-smooth 13.5” PixelSense touchscreen for ultra-portable productivity. Make it your own with your choice of four bold colors [1].
  • Lift the lid and get in the flow – Effortlessly open with one finger and sign-in securely in seconds with Windows Hello and your face as your password.
  • Type accurately and quickly with exceptional typing comfort – Featuring the perfect balance of key travel and responsiveness, plus easy navigation on the large touchpad.
  • See more and do more – With the 3:2 Surface ratio on the vibrant PixelSense touch display, Surface Laptop 5 has 18% more vertical screen real estate for less scrolling and more doing [2].
6
Lenovo IdeaPad 3 Laptop, 15.6” FHD Touchscreen Display, Intel Core i5-1135G7 Processor, 20GB RAM, 1TB SSD, Wi-Fi 6, SD Card Reader, HDMI, Webcam, Windows 11 Pro, Grey

Rating is 4.5 out of 5

Lenovo IdeaPad 3 Laptop, 15.6” FHD Touchscreen Display, Intel Core i5-1135G7 Processor, 20GB RAM, 1TB SSD, Wi-Fi 6, SD Card Reader, HDMI, Webcam, Windows 11 Pro, Grey

  • 【High Speed RAM And Enormous Space】20GB high-bandwidth DDR4 RAM to smoothly run multiple applications and browser tabs all at once; 1TB PCIe NVMe M.2 Solid State Drive allows to fast bootup and data transfer
  • 【Processor】11th Generation Intel Core i5-1135G7 Processor (2.40 GHz up to 4.20 GHz, 4 Cores, 8 Threads)
  • 【Display】15.6" FHD (1920 x 1080), IPS, Anti-Glare, Touchscreen, 45%NTSC, 300 nits, 60Hz, LED Backlight, Narrow Bezel
  • 【Tech Specs】1 x USB-A 3.2 Gen 1, 1 x USB-A 2.0, 1 x USB-C 3.2 Gen 1, 1 x Headphone/Microphone Combo, 1 x HDMI, 1 x SD Media Card Reader; Wi-Fi 6 AX and Bluetooth 5.1; Touchscreen; Numeric Keyboard; Windows 11 Pro
  • 【Authorized KKE Bundle】 Bundled with KKE Mousepad
7
ASUS VivoBook 15.6" Touchscreen FHD Laptop, 12th Gen Intel Core i7-1255U, 16GB RAM, 512GB PCIe SSD, Intel Iris Xe Graphics, Backlit Keyboard, WiFi 6, Windows 11 Pro, Quiet Blue, 32GB Hotface USB Card

Rating is 4.4 out of 5

ASUS VivoBook 15.6" Touchscreen FHD Laptop, 12th Gen Intel Core i7-1255U, 16GB RAM, 512GB PCIe SSD, Intel Iris Xe Graphics, Backlit Keyboard, WiFi 6, Windows 11 Pro, Quiet Blue, 32GB Hotface USB Card

  • 【15.6" FHD Touchscreen Display】15.6" FHD (1920 x 1080) Touch screen Display. Embark on a visual journey where vibrant colors and high resolution come to life at your fingertips.
  • 【Intel Core i7-1255U Processor】1.7 GHz (12M Cache, up to 4.7 GHz, 10 cores), saving you time and increasing your ability to prioritize important tasks. Embrace highly efficient multitasking, powering through new levels of productivity and unleashing your full potential in a boundless journey.
  • 【16GB DDR4 RAM】Seamlessly tackle resource-intensive tasks, smoothly run multiple applications simultaneously, and enjoy lightning-fast responsiveness that keeps you in the flow.【512GB PCIe SSD】Delivers lightning-fast boot-up speed, enhanced storage capabilities, and support for high-definition video playback. Effortlessly store an extensive digital library and access your virtual world with ease.
  • 【Backlit Keyboard】The illuminated keys make it easier to locate specific keys and improve typing accuracy, allowing you to be more productive and focused on your tasks.【720p HD Camera】Provides high quality video calls, virtual meetings and online interactions.
  • 【Windows 11 Pro】Enjoy effortless Windows 11 Pro gaming performance with the ASUS Vivobook! 【Dimensions & Weight】9.15 x 14.16 x 0.78 Inches, 3.75 lb.【Ports and Accessories 】1x USB 2.0 Type-A, 2x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A, 1x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-C, 1x HDMI, 1x Audio jack, 1x DC-in, Quiet Blue. Bonus 32GB Hotface USB Card.


What is the recommended maximum temperature for a Windows laptop's hard drive?

The recommended maximum temperature for a Windows laptop's hard drive can vary depending on the manufacturer and model of the laptop. However, as a general guideline, it is recommended to keep the hard drive temperature below 50-60 degrees Celsius (122-140 degrees Fahrenheit) for optimal performance and longevity. Excessive heat can potentially damage the hard drive and lead to data loss or other issues. It is advisable to ensure adequate airflow and ventilation for the laptop to prevent overheating.


How to optimize the browser settings to improve internet speed on a Windows laptop?

Here are some tips to optimize browser settings and improve internet speed on a Windows laptop:

  1. Clear Browser Cache: Clearing the cache helps to remove temporary files and data that can slow down the browser. In most browsers, you can find the clear cache option in the settings or preferences menu.
  2. Disable Unneeded Extensions: Some browser extensions can consume a significant amount of system resources and slow down internet browsing. Disable or remove any unnecessary extensions from your browser.
  3. Enable Prefetching: Prefetching allows the browser to proactively load and cache web pages that it predicts you will visit. This can significantly reduce loading times for frequently visited websites. To enable prefetching, go to the browser settings and search for the prefetching option.
  4. Adjust DNS Settings: Changing the Domain Name System (DNS) settings to faster and more reliable options can help improve internet speed. You can use public DNS services like Google DNS (8.8.8.8 and 8.8.4.4) or Cloudflare DNS (1.1.1.1 and 1.0.0.1). To change DNS settings, go to network adapter settings in your Windows Control Panel.
  5. Disable Auto-Play Videos: Many websites have auto-play videos that can consume a lot of bandwidth, slowing down browsing speed. Disable auto-play videos in your browser settings to prevent unnecessary data usage.
  6. Enable Data Compression: Browsers like Google Chrome have data compression features that can reduce the amount of data transferred, resulting in faster loading times. Enable data compression in your browser settings if available.
  7. Update Browser: Ensure that you are using the latest version of your browser, as newer versions often provide improved performance and speed enhancements.
  8. Limit Open Tabs: Having too many open tabs in your browser can consume system resources and impact internet speed. Keep the number of open tabs to a minimum for better performance.
  9. Disable Hardware Acceleration: Hardware acceleration uses your computer's GPU to speed up browser performance. However, in some cases, it can cause issues. Disable hardware acceleration in your browser settings to see if it improves internet speed.
  10. Use a Lightweight Browser: If none of the above steps provide a significant improvement, consider switching to a lightweight browser. Examples include Mozilla Firefox Focus, Midori, or Pale Moon, which are optimized for speed and resource efficiency.


Remember that while these tips can help optimize your browser for faster internet speed, your actual internet bandwidth is determined by your internet service provider (ISP) and other external factors.


What is the recommended CPU temperature range for a Windows laptop?

The recommended CPU temperature range for a Windows laptop typically falls between 40°C to 80°C (or 104°F to 176°F). It's important to note that every CPU model may have different temperature specifications, so it is always recommended to refer to the manufacturer's documentation for the specific CPU installed in the laptop. Additionally, the ideal temperature range may also depend on the laptop's workload and ambient temperature.


What is the best way to diagnose a slow Windows laptop?

There are several steps you can take to diagnose a slow Windows laptop. Here are some of the most effective methods:

  1. Monitor Task Manager: Open Task Manager by right-clicking on the taskbar and selecting "Task Manager." Check the "Processes" and "Performance" tabs to identify any programs or processes that are using an excessive amount of CPU, memory, or disk. This can help you pinpoint resource-hogging applications causing slowness.
  2. Scan for Malware: Perform a full system scan using a reliable antivirus or antimalware software. Malware infections can significantly slow down a laptop's performance. Remove any detected threats to improve the speed.
  3. Clean up Disk Space: Use the built-in Disk Cleanup utility to remove unnecessary files and free up disk space. Go to the "Start" menu, search for "Disk Cleanup," and run the utility to remove temporary files, system files, and other junk that can slow down your laptop.
  4. Disable Startup Programs: Open Task Manager (Ctrl+Shift+Esc), go to the "Startup" tab, and disable any unnecessary programs that launch at startup. Disabling these programs can help reduce the time it takes for your laptop to boot up and also free up system resources.
  5. Check for Software Updates: Make sure your operating system, drivers, and applications are up to date. Outdated software can lead to compatibility issues and performance problems. Update them regularly to ensure optimal performance.
  6. Optimize Power Settings: Adjust your power settings to high performance mode. Open the Control Panel, search for "Power Options," and select a high-performance plan. This can help maximize the laptop's performance potential.
  7. Upgrade Hardware Components: If the above steps don't significantly improve the laptop's performance, consider upgrading the hardware components. Increasing RAM, upgrading to a solid-state drive (SSD), or replacing the old battery can provide a significant speed boost.


Overall, by following these steps, you should be able to identify and address the factors contributing to the slow performance of your Windows laptop.

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