As a managed IT support provider, we have quite a few tools up our sleeves to help make your computer run faster and better. There are many free tools to fix your computer that even professionals like us use on a regular basis. Some of the tools we use, we wouldn’t recommend using without either knowing what you are doing and looking at or having a professional nearby to assist you in running the tool. We have put together a list of the tools that are pretty safe for you to use without a professional, but always, if you have a question about what you should do when running these tools, please call a professional to ask before you damage your computer.
When your computer is running low on disk space, running Treesize can really give you a great picture of what is taking up the most space. You should be able to understand the files and folders that have the largest space and decide whether or not they can be deleted. If you are unsure about a file, it is best to consult with a professional before deciding to delete it. You can use Treesize on any drive, internal and external, to find out what could be using the most space.
Viruses can plague computers no matter how careful you are. The biggest symptoms that you have a virus are multiple popups when browsing the internet, and websites being slow to load. When you suspect you have a virus, running a Malwarebytes scan can clean up most of the simple viruses that infect your system. Just about all of the items that Malwarebytes finds can be removed, but again, if you have a question about a particular item, make sure to consult a professional before you remove it.
Each piece of software you install on your computer can add items to your start-up. As you continue to add software, your computer can seriously start to take forever to boot up. Autoruns is a great way to get a handle on all of the items affecting your start-up time. When you run the utility it will show you the different programs that are starting up with your system. Be especially careful removing some of these programs that autorun, as they may be required services for the particular program to run.
For a more broad maintenance tool, CCleaner is a great option. It can perform some of the tasks the other tools can but in a different way. If you know specifically you have one of the problems listed above, those are great tools to use. If your computer is just more generally “slow” CCleaner can give you some insight into why and help you fix it. CCleaner does offer something the others don’t, and that is cleaning up your registry. All programs create registry entries into the computer. When you delete a program or uninstall something, registry entries can be left behind. Similar to a cluttered desk, a cluttered registry can reduce productivity and performance.
Using these tools will certainly help improve the performance of your computer, but use them cautiously and never remove or delete something that you don’t understand or know for sure what it is.