Slow PC

I have a Dell model PC, Intel Core 2 Duo CPU E6550 @ 2.33 GHz, 4 GB Ram, 297 GB Hard Drive, about 79GB available.

Windows 7.

It has gotten increasingly slow over time. I now have to reboot about every 24 hours, If I have 15 - 20 tabs open in FireFox, it sometimes just gets stuck.

Is there a good, non-virus introducing tool that is not too expensive that I could get to speed it up?

Richard KortsBusiness Owner / Chief DeveloperAsked:
Who is Participating?

[Product update] Infrastructure Analysis Tool is now available with Business Accounts.Learn More

I wear a lot of hats...

"The solutions and answers provided on Experts Exchange have been extremely helpful to me over the last few years. I wear a lot of hats - Developer, Database Administrator, Help Desk, etc., so I know a lot of things but not a lot about one thing. Experts Exchange gives me answers from people who do know a lot about one thing, in a easy to use platform." -Todd S.

Do you clean your PC of junk files that get accumulated over time?

If not, you may benefit by using CCleaner (Crap Cleaner), a free program from: >

For virii, you may run MalwareBytes Antimalware, free, from: >

Run CCleaner once in a day or two.  And MBAM scan if you suspect a virus infection.
Download the UBCD and run all hardware diagnostics to rule out possible hardware failure.

If you wish to try ccleaner then unselect the registry clean as it may delete registry entries that are important.

Suggest you read the guide before using it:

Please see:
How to speed up Windows 7: the ultimate guide to speeding up a slow PC from
By Roland Wadilove:

Experts Exchange Solution brought to you by

Your issues matter to us.

Facing a tech roadblock? Get the help and guidance you need from experienced professionals who care. Ask your question anytime, anywhere, with no hassle.

Start your 7-day free trial
If you suspect malware  or a virus to be the cause then:

No, one antivirus will find and clean every malware, virus or trojan so you need to scan with multiple tools.

Download these free cleaning tools.
Boot the PC in safe mode then run each of these free cleaning tools until the problem has beed removed:

1. Malwarebytes

2. Combo Fix

3. Rogue Killer

4. Hitman Pro

5. TDS Killer

6. SuperAntiSpyware
Active Protection takes the fight to cryptojacking

While there were several headline-grabbing ransomware attacks during in 2017, another big threat started appearing at the same time that didn’t get the same coverage – illicit cryptomining.

I use AVG Internet security but you can get the free version of that, clear your temp files out, run a chkdsk /f to remove any corrupt sectors on the drive and check the system & application event logs to see if any errors are listed there to point to what the issue maybe.
It is best to stay away from speed-up-pc and optimize-pc programs.
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
Run Disk Cleanup and Disk Defrag afterward to get rid of temporary files (that really slow things down) and to organize files for fast access. Both tools come with Windows and are in System Tools.

I agree with the above on speed up and optimize tools. I don't use them and do not need them. I also agree with scanning for malware.

Please read the relevant sections in my article on Trouble-free computing.
since you have a Dell model PC - you probably have a restore partition also.
The best way to have a speedy pc is a fresh install, or use that partition
to start it, use the F8 key to access the advanced options  -  then select repair your PC
the whole process is described here :

***you will need to redo the updates (+ installed software since) , so it may be wise to take an image of the disk - once it's fully installed
Pramod UbheCommented:
here are some more suggestions -

1) fresh install; but it requires more efforts to bring your computer to the stage where it is currently.
2) disk defragmentation
3) uninstall unwanted applications/programs
if you are specifically getting slow response on firefox/browsing, check for add-ons and disable which are not required.
also you can reset firefox after backing up all the settings.
4) check your task manager to see what's making your PC slow, is it high memory utilization or CPU utilization or disk I/O or any other network activity, based on your analysis, consider re-configuration of the application that is using more resources.
EirmanChief Operations ManagerCommented:
In Firefox go to Tools > Options
Then go to Tabs and make sure that "Don't open tabs until selected" is selected.
Restart Firefox and compare it's memory usage before and after.

Install the free and really excellent addon called "Session Manager".
If you have a bunch tabs that you haven't had time to bookmark, just save the session with a memorable name and close all your tabs. You can get the closed tabs back whenever you want.

Set your swap file to a static/fixed 6 Meg (i.e. Dont let windows handle it)

If you have a spare memory stick lying around try this (do before/after comparisons)
It doesn't always work, but it's worth trying.

Most important of all, get rid of items that you don't want to start automatically. You should stop all toolbars and anything that wants to update (except of course your anti-virus/malware programs).
Stop Adobe, Google, Your printer etc. Nothing is permanent .... you can always go back and re-enable items.
Danny ChildIT ManagerCommented:
If the above don't help, and the only one I'd have a minor quibble with would be setting the swap file to be a fixed size (I don't think this helps one way or another) - then another option would be to change out your hard disk - by the size of it (297mb), it's quite old?

If you go for a SSD, and clone over  your current disk, you should see some dramatic improvement in startup times - I'd suggest the Crucial MX100 - 512mb variant.  if you do choose a new hard disk, you can also first try a fresh install to the new hard disk, and see how fast that is.  Afterwards, you can do the cloning, and see if the performance drops compared to the fresh one, and decide which is best.  Of course, with a brand new disk, you can always revert back to the old one in a few seconds.  

However, this won't help with the freezing issues, but hopefully the other fixes above have resolved that...
EirmanChief Operations ManagerCommented:
Hi Dan, I always thought that a fixed swap file was better from a defragmentation point of view and thus performed a bit better.

One more suggestion rkorts, Make sure that you anti-virus/malware scans run when YOU want (i.e. during quiet times). Scans can eat up a lot of memory.
let us know what you will do rkorts!
Richard KortsBusiness Owner / Chief DeveloperAuthor Commented:
Wow, most solutions I have ever got on EE.

I used ccleaner, seemed to help a little, but I'm basically back to square one & I lost ALL my cache, it remembers NONE of my common sites.

I will probably try John Hurst path.

FYI, this is NOT about virsuses, etc. I have used AVG for over a year, seems to work OK.

Oddest name, AVG meaning "average". Of course I'm sure it means "Anti Virus Group" or something like that, not too good marketing.

I will let you all know results; too early to tell right now.
rkorts your running out of space if you missed it refer to DanCh99 comment as he did bring it up too.
 Your capacity is 297 GB Hard Drive, and only  about 79 GB available. Not MB !!!
That's getting low if you have system restore enabled it will be deleting old for new, windows may not run properly,
I keep mine over 100 gig for this reason
Open computer and rightclick C drive >properties Disc space used and free disc space, I have small system disc on purpose as I have 3 USB external HDD 1 terrabyte each and store all my stuff on them. And yes it is getting a little hard to to get these sized internal discs.
Consider in investing is USB drives for storage
Computer drivesDisc space
if he has 19 GB -  he nearly has 30% disk space available more than enough
if he gets near 10-15% i would say yes, that can be a cause
but it is far more probable that the disk has problems -
if so run a diagnostic to assure yourself
"FYI, this is NOT about virsuses, etc. I have used AVG for over a year, seems to work OK."

Not recommended...

AVG is the likely cause for slow performance as it hogs too much memory.

Switch to a free cloud antivirus and realize the increased speed.
I have used Panda for several years and strongly recommend it:

Did you test your hardware for being the cause?

Or Download the UBCD and run all hardware diagnostics to rule out possible hardware failure.

As suggested: Michael-Best2014-10-26 at 02:17:55ID: 40404118

For aditional info. read this link from
Hi Michael,

Your comment is completely untrue in regards to AVG being a memory hog. I have this installed on multiple client machines and also my home machines/VM's and its fine. Even looking at the Task Manager it doesn't use alot of resource.

I use AVG because not only is it a lightweight client but its also very reliable at removing infections (Sometimes even before they infect the machine)

If you want a completely lightweight client then Avast is the answer but i've heard expert opinions on machines being infected without Avast even seeing/acknowledging the machine is infected.

Personal experience: AVG may use some resource (not as much as you said) but I would rather it use it over other solutions to ensure my machines are never effected.
Lets look at your first comment>I now have to reboot about every 24 hours, If I have 15 - 20 tabs open in FireFox, it sometimes just gets stuck.
Sounds as if it is wearing out lol being on all the time,
I'd go as far as checking for dust build up on the fans inside the power supply unit that gets a lot of dust, fans on the video card. Motherboard capacitors ram sticks.
Dust builds heat.
Run the disc cleanup to delete a host of  buildup with temp files/thumbnails and other things. When the temp files build up slows windows down.
Run a defrag of the drive to tighten up allocated space.
Delete history in FF as the cache can build up with so many open 24/7
Could be windows updates pending updates installed and requires a reboot.
check your taskmanager processes, go to the top VIEW add columns and add peak working memory and memory working sets waych how much cpu explorer is using and how high your cpu usage is  and physical memory.
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
@rkorts  - Thank you and I was happy to help.
It's more than this solution.Get answers and train to solve all your tech problems - anytime, anywhere.Try it for free Edge Out The Competitionfor your dream job with proven skills and certifications.Get started today Stand Outas the employee with proven skills.Start learning today for free Move Your Career Forwardwith certification training in the latest technologies.Start your trial today
Windows 7

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.