20nov how to speed up an ageing laptop hero
Research report
2 November 2020

How to speed up an ageing laptop

Laptop running slow? Here’s how to give your computer a new lease of life.

Member comments

Get access to comment

J W.
18 Oct 2021
OS upgrade

Windows 10 seems less resource hungry than Windows 7 and Microsoft supports it with free security patches. If you're upgrading to an SSD then consider putting a fresh install of W10 on that.

Saving your data (in the cloud or a memory stick), formatting and reinstalling Windows is the biggest, easiest improvement. Only reinstall programs that you need.

Paul W
16 Oct 2021
Agreed with SSD

I replaced my HD on my 10 year old desk top with a SSD and also my wife's 5 year old laptop. The were like new PCs after the upgrade,

John C.
07 Nov 2020
SSD - replace your hard drive

As per Anthony's comments.

Even if you get a technician to replace it (some laptop hard drives are in awkward to get at places) it's not an expensive upgrade option. And you can request that all your data/programs get transferred too.

This is the single best way to get years more life out of an aging laptop. My (originally top-of-the-line/spec) 5 year old Asus laptop was taking minutes to boot up and log in. Replaced the drive with an SSD and it's now mere seconds!! It's like having a new machine, for just a couple of hundred dollars....

David M.
07 Nov 2020
RAM vs ROM

RAM = Random Access Memory
ROM = Read Only Memory

Also try Linux on an old laptop. It will likely perform better than Windows on the same hardware.

Joanna S.
16 Oct 2021
Linux worth a try

Linux Mint is a good distribution to try out Linux. Most Linux distributions come with a range of software installed already so you can start working almost immediately after installation.
If there is an old Windows program you can't use any more, sometimes they can run on Wine under Linux

roy p.
07 Nov 2020
dual processor

I would add to this good article - before upgrading check the laptop has at least a dual processor or even quad core . For example one with a single pocessor will have dissapointing results no matter what you add.
My dual processor Toshiba is great. Every few years I reload the win7 OS.
Roy Purvis

Anthony
07 Nov 2020
Replace the hard drive is the best improvement for an older Laptop.

Replacing the old HDD drive with a solid state drive (SSD) at around $100 to $200 (depending on make of SSD) for 1 terabyte, transforms an old laptop (mine is 5 years old) to performing better than when it was new. It doesn’t boot up quite as quickly as an iPad, but not far off, and so much faster than before the upgrade. Some tech expertise is necessary, but the upgrade SSD comes with instructions. Even if using a technician to do the job (about an hour) it could be cost effective.

John M.
16 Oct 2021
Survey computer repair services

What about a survey of companies techs Computer repairs upgrades etc in each main city Include Mac please
John