Does a sluggish or slow computer mean I need to buy a new one?

By Sandra Clitter 怀

I don’t know about you, but I get very annoyed by the concept of ‘disposable technology’. What you ask, is that? “Disposable technology” implies that there is a planned obsolescence in the gadgets and gizmos that we buy. In truth, that’s correct. Technology is being developed so quickly, that before you even unpackage that brand new thingamajig, it’s replacement is already in the pipeline. That said, just because something is available for sale doesn’t mean that YOU need to purchase it!

Case in point: My 3-year-old laptop. My laptop is getting cranky. It takes a longggg time to boot. Programs crash for no apparent reason. Searches require a trip to Starbucks to get coffee to stay awake while the process is running. Sounding like I need a new laptop, right? I could very well justify the purchase, as I typically tell people that a laptop is only designed for 2-3 years of use (desktops for 3-4 years). Once you’ve gotten that much out of the machine, it doesn’t owe you a thing! OK, but I don’t WANT to purchase a new laptop right now!!! The computer works fine (thank you Lenovo for building a fairly rugged piece of equipment)…its just terribly, slowwwwwww.

Why is it slow? Well, every time you install/uninstall software, little bits and pieces of debris are left along the way. Over time, those bits of debris accumulate into a pile of junk that gets in the way of the computer operating efficiently. No different than your tool bench getting disorganized after a while because you fail to hang every item back in its place. Eventually, you need to do a major housecleaning.

So, what are the alternatives with a computer? A virtual ‘housecleaning’.

Once I’ve tried all of the typical diagnostics (scan disk, defrag, anti-virus scan, anti-malware scan), and the speed is still not what I remember, it’s time for more radical steps – but steps that most people can do themselves if they have a little patience (oh yes, and some time). How do you do a ‘virtual housecleaning’? Reinstall the operating system (in my case, Windows XP), and then reinstall all of the programs. While this is a time-consuming process, it’s not as scary as it sounds – as long as you FOLLOW A PLAN!!!!

This article in PC World gives a terrific step-by-step guide to revitalizing an older computer:
How to reinstall Windows without losing your data

MOST IMPORTANT TIP: HAVE ALL OF YOUR DATA BACKED UP BEFORE YOU BEGIN!!! If you’ve done that, then it’s just a question of time…and all of your critical information will still be available after you resurrect your machine.

Maybe this is one of your New Year’s Resolutions! I know that it is one of mine :-).


  1. Posted December 21, 2011 at 10:21 am | Permalink | Reply

    I personally cherished studying this. I must discover much more on this matter. I’m appreciating determination you include your blog, considering that its beneficial place just where I could find lots of useful facts.

  2. Posted January 25, 2011 at 5:01 am | Permalink | Reply

    pretty helpful material, overall I consider this is well worth a bookmark, thanks

  3. Anonymous
    Posted January 19, 2011 at 7:55 am | Permalink | Reply

    This is such a great resource that you are providing and you give it away for free. I enjoy seeing websites that understand the value of providing a prime resource for free. I truly loved reading your post. Thanks!

    • Posted January 19, 2011 at 12:25 pm | Permalink | Reply

      Thank you! Its all information that’s ‘out there’…just waiting to be captured and/or written in ‘English’. Glad you’re enjoying.

  4. jen
    Posted January 13, 2011 at 8:09 pm | Permalink | Reply

    I enjoyed to c that thinks. Great informative and helpful article.

  5. Nova Radio
    Posted January 13, 2011 at 10:55 am | Permalink | Reply

    I have been checking out a few of your stories and i must say pretty clever stuff. I will definitely bookmark your blog.

    • Posted January 13, 2011 at 11:11 am | Permalink | Reply

      Thank you!!! Glad that you enjoy. Please visit frequently, and feel free to contribute.

  6. physical therapist
    Posted January 13, 2011 at 12:04 am | Permalink | Reply

    Wow this is a great resource.. Iā€™m enjoying it.. good article

  7. auto mechanic work
    Posted January 4, 2011 at 11:18 am | Permalink | Reply

    Thank you, I have recently been searching for information about this topic for ages and yours is the best I have discovered so far.

    • Posted January 6, 2011 at 2:23 pm | Permalink | Reply

      Thank you!!! Let us know how you make out if you give it a whirl…I’m still procrastinating, but I WILL do it šŸ™‚

  8. Posted December 30, 2010 at 10:47 am | Permalink | Reply

    Sandy… I can’t resist:

    Or get a Mac!

    Charlie Seymour Jr

Post a Comment

Your email is never shared. Required fields are marked *