Helping people with computers... one answer at a time.
There are many different things that could be contributing to your system being slow. Everything from malware to running too much software at the same time.
My computer is so slow, a snail could move faster than it can. I absolutely do not know what to do with it. I restored it two days ago, but it did not help me one bit. I can't afford to buy one of those discs that's supposed to fix the computer and I've tried everything else. It takes me about four minutes to open an email and go on to the site. Sometimes, even more like six minutes.
In this excerpt from Answercast #52, I look at a machine that is slow as a snail on the internet and advise against fix-it-all programs.
So I'm definitely going to wave you off of even considering buying those discs that claim to fix everything.
In my mind, in my experience, while there may be some good ones out there, there are so many that are ineffective and misleading that there's just too good a chance that you would be wasting your money.
Unfortunately, there are many, many, many different things that could be contributing to your system being slow. Everything from malware (so I'd certainly make sure that you're running up-to-date malware scans) to just trying to run too much software at the same time.
If your disk is really busy, for example, it's very possible that too many different applications are all trying to do something on your computer at the same time - and thereby slowing each other down. That would manifest as your email potentially being very, very slow.
Another thing is disk issues. If the hard disk itself is failing, that sometimes manifests as extreme slowness.
It could be simply a lack of RAM. If your machine does not have enough RAM in it (and you're trying to do too much with it), it's very possible that the system is swapping so much to the hard drive that it effectively impacts the performance once again of everything.
If this is internet only? In other words, if your applications (local applications) are all responding well but it's only when you're trying to do something on the internet (like read your email, or download your email, or visit web pages), then I'd start looking at internet applications that are also trying to share your Internet connection.
Your internet connection is, in fact, one of the choke points on your machine. It's probably the slowest thing on a well-functioning machine. It's probably the thing that limits what you can do the most.
So, I would make sure that there aren't other applications trying to use the internet connection at the same time.
If you share your internet connection with other machines, make sure that all those machines aren't trying to share the internet connection at the same time. They will all slow you down.
So those are the kinds of things to look at. It's a very complex problem.
There are so many different opportunities for things to go wrong. It's hard to
say based on just "my machine is slow" that these are things that you need to
be looking at.
Next from Answercast 52 - How do I identify this flashing window at boot time?
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