Like any other electronic device, your laptop will eventually become sluggish and unreliable. Its steady trip to obsolescence becomes much faster when you don’t maintain it properly. That’s just the way things roll when it comes to technology.
Fortunately, with proper maintenance, you can delay your trusty compadre’s trip to the junkyard. Patch in a few upgrades into the mix, and you’re golden for a few more years or so.
Software: Uninstall Unused Apps; Delete Old Files
Do some spring cleaning, and uninstall the programs that you don’t use anymore. Take note of the apps that run in the background, as they waste precious system resources. Track them down, and get rid of the unimportant ones. If you’re running low on drive space, delete more files. Videos, in particular, are space hogs, so get to trimming your archives.
Software: Prune Your Start-up Programs
A lot of programs are designed to load during your laptop’s start-up phase. These programs, more often than not, slow down the start-up phase, especially for an aging computer. Remove or disable these unwanted apps.
Software: Replace Bloated Apps with Better Ones
Certain programs can be especially taxing on your laptop’s resources. Find out which ones are the culprits, and replace them with more-optimized alternatives. For example, the Google Chrome browser, though very versatile and robust, can gobble up ungodly amounts of RAM with its multi-tabbing feature. There are plenty of viable substitutes out there, so get to browsing for them.
Software: Defragment Your Drives
If your laptop relies on old mechanical drives, you’ll want to defrag them regularly for maximum performance. If you’re on solid-state drives (SSD) already, then this section doesn’t apply to you. What disk defragmentation does is that it neatly organizes all the data inside drives to improve loading and access times.
Hardware: Physically Clean Your Laptop
If you’re comfortable in tinkering with gadgets and doodads, you can open up your laptop and do some general maintenance. Clean the dust off your laptop’s innards, especially its cooling fans.
When your laptop is operating at higher-than-usual temperatures, its performance is affected adversely. It won’t hurt to get into the habit of regularly cleaning your laptop’s exterior shell as well.
Hardware: Switch to SSD Drives
Solid-state drives are significantly faster compared to mechanical hard drives. Getting one will greatly improve your laptop’s start-up and loading times. The only con to SSDs is that they’re expensive, especially the high-capacity varieties.
An SSD with one terabyte of capacity is around thrice the price of a regular one-terabyte hard drive. Think of choosing an external SSD is a good idea too, for backup purposes.
Hardware: Get More RAM
Here’s another upgrade path that you can easily take to quickly improve the performance of your laptop. Get as much RAM as possible for your laptop, and you’ll find your loading times faster and programs much more responsive.
You can’t go wrong with getting more RAM. It’s just that your laptop has a maximum capacity. Also, RAM can become very pricey for the higher-capacity kits.
Buying new parts might save you some bucks but if you end up having too many parts to buy on your checklist, maybe it’s time to get a new one. Some people will favor laptops that are ultralight to carry, while some will opt for performance and speed, like what gaming laptops provide. If all else fails, then you can always carry out the parts yourself and build your own PC instead.
Whatever your preference is, make sure to evaluate the things you’re looking for in a laptop. Do some research, and make a comparison among brands.