7 NOs You Need to Master if You Have a Lousy PC

Article by George Norman (Cybersecurity Editor)

on 13 Mar 2017

Older PCs with less than spectacular hardware need to be kept in check and tweaked so that you can squeeze as much performance as possible out of their tired, old innards. This means saying NO to a lot of things that new and powerful PCs can very easily handle.

The list below presents 7 scenarios that make it incredibly annoying to use a PC that doesn’t have enough power to run smoothly and keep up with your fast paced work style. Some scenarios are accompanied by a free software application (or more) that can fix the annoyance. But not all scenarios can be fixed with a software application, mind you.

1. Say no to junk that wastes storage space

A new PC has more than enough storage space, meaning that you don’t have to worry about junk files very often. An older PC doesn’t have that much storage space to offer, meaning you will have to regularly get rid of all the junk that clutters your hard disk. Before you turn to a specialized tool for help, make sure to empty the Recycle Bin and access the built-in Disk Cleanup tool to see how much unnecessary junk you can remove.

My favorite cleaning tool that does a proper job of finding and removing junk files is Piriform’s CCleaner. In case you were wondering, the C stands for Crap, and CCleaner removes 35,000,000GB worth of crap every month.

On top of that, CCleaner can clean the Windows Registry, uninstall applications, disable startup programs, disable browser plugins, present disk space usage, find duplicates, remove System Restore points, and even wipe drives. CCleaner beautifully addresses all your needs to reclaim storage space and keep your PC junk-free.

Get CCleaner for Windows right here on FindMySoft. Learn more about CCleaner.

2. Say no to unnecessary applications

If you rarely or never use an application, then you don’t need it. And if you don’t need it, then you should uninstall it. The good news is that you can easily uninstall applications from the Control Panel, with Windows' built-in uninstall tool. The bad news is that some applications leave junk behind and the built-in tool doesn’t find and remove them. That’s why 3rd party developers came up with specialized uninstallers that can efficiently remove applications and ensure they don’t leave anything behind.

My favorite tool to remove unnecessary applications is Thomas Koen’s GeekUninstaller. The main thing I like is that when it’s done uninstalling an application, it runs a scan and uncovers all the files and Registry entries that application left behind. I also like that GeekUninstaller is portable, runs as a native 64-bit application on 64-bit systems, has a minimalist interface, does its job fast, and it can uninstall Windows Store apps.

Get GeekUninstaller for Windows right here on FindMySoft. Learn more about GeekUninstaller.

3. Say no to startup programs

When your PC boots up, it loads the Windows operating system and it runs all the applications that are set to run at startup. A powerful PC with plenty of resources can run these applications without delaying the startup process too much. A lousy PC on the other hand will struggle and force you to wait. So if you don’t want to wait longer than necessary for your PC to boot up, then you need to keep a close eye on all the applications that are set to run at startup.

You can do that by from the Task Manager’s Startup section or by using the aforementioned CCleanear. Here are a few other applications that let you view and manage startup programs: Glarysoft Quick Startup, T3 Startup Manager, SterJo Startup Patrol, Anvi Startup Booster, WhatInStartup, AutoRuns, and plenty more.

Obviously, you’re free to install any application you want on your PC. I for one am happy managing all my startup programs with CCleaner.

4. Say no to ads

Most people use an ad blocker because ads are annoying and distracting. If you have a lousy PC, there’s one more reason to utterly hate ads: they’ll use up resources your PC can’t afford to waste, slow down your browsing, and even cause your browser or your entire PC to freeze. Using an ad blocker in this situation isn’t about removing annoying ads, it’s about making your browsing sessions bearable.

The ad blocker that I’ve used for years is Murray Hurps' AdMuncher. But since AdMuncher has stopped receiving regular updates, I switched to uBlock Origin, a free and open source browser add-on that is available for Firefox, Chrome, and Microsoft Edge. I heard about uBlock Origin when Mozilla’s selected it as the Pick of the Month add-on for May 2016 and I’ve been using it ever since. So far, I’ve nothing bad to say about this amazing ad blocker.

If you’re willing to give up on your favorite browser and switch to Opera, then you need to know that Opera can natively block ads. Opera is the first major browser to come with built-in ad blocking technology.

5. Say no to uninterrupted browsing sessions

It is a well-known fact that browsers are memory hogs and the longer you use them, the more RAM memory they’ll take up. If your PC is fitted with 8GB or maybe 16GB of RAM, you’re not going to notice any slowdowns. But if you have a lousy PC with significantly less RAM, you are most definitely going to notice that your PC gets sluggish.

If you’re like me, it doesn’t really matter which browser uses the least memory, because there’s no way in hell you’re going to leave your favorite browser and switch to something else. So the only thing that you can do is to take a break, close all unnecessary tabs, and restart your browser. That’s what I do whenever I notice that Firefox is hogging too much RAM.

6. Say no to a powerful antivirus

I’ve tested a ton of antivirus and security products since I joined FindMySoft and the one thing they have in common isn’t the fact that they protect your PC against viruses, Trojans, malware, and other threats. The one thing they have in common is that they’ll hog resources a lousy computer can’t afford to spare. Sure, some antivirus products are better than others in this regard, but no matter how gentle an antivirus is, you’re going to feel it slowing down your PC.

Microsoft Security Essentials (Windows 7) and the built-in Windows Defender (Windows 8 and newer) aren’t the best security solutions out there – not by a longshot. But they will take it easy on system resources and won’t slow down your PC. So if you find that other antivirus products slow your PC down to a crawl, at least you have these Microsoft’s antivirus products to fall back onto.

7. Say no to new video games

Mass Effect Andromeda requires an Intel Core i5 processor, NVIDIA GTX 660 graphics card, and 8GB of RAM. Ghost Recon Wildlands requires an Intel Core i5 processor, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660 graphics card, and 6GB of RAM. For Honor requires an Intel Core i3 processor, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660 graphics card, and 4GB of RAM. And those aren’t even the recommended system requirements, they’re the minimum system requirements.

A lousy PC that can barely get daily stuff done will have no chance of running any new video game. Depending on how old/lousy the hardware under the hood is, it might not run older games either.

I wonder… is this why "let’s play" videos have become so popular? Is it because people can’t run the games on their PCs? Or is it because people would rather watch someone else play a game instead of playing it themselves?

Honorable mention – Say not to dirt

In time, your keyboard will get dirty and your PC’s case will accumulate dust – a lot of dust. So make sure to wipe your keyboard clean every now and again and set aside some time to open your PC case and remove all the dust. Just make sure not to break something!

Latest News

Sony's 'Attack of the Blockbusters Sale' Slashes Prices in Half for a Ton of PS4 Games

17 Aug 2017

How Samsung's New T5 Compares to the Old T3 Portable SSD (Infographic)

17 Aug 2017

See all