Why is My Brand New Laptop So Slow?

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Is your new laptop slow? Does it take annoyingly long to start up? Are programs running slower than usual? As laptops age, they invariably slow down, however when you buy a brand new laptop, you should not have to deal with slow performance. Good laptops last forever, and the quality is always at least above average. However, sometimes things don’t go as smooth.

If you’ve just purchased a machine and you’re wondering why your new laptop is slow, then keep on reading! In this article you will find a series of useful tips on how to get the speed up on your brand new laptop.

Steps to Take if Your New Laptop is Slow

In order to find out exactly why your laptop is slow, it is first important to know what exactly is going on with it. Does your laptop start slowly? Or does it respond slowly to mouse and keyboard? Is the device slow to use the internet? Or is it hanging and the overall operation is painfully slow? You may be surprised to learn that it can also be a combination of things that make your laptop seem slow as a whole, and maybe even be.

The slow performance of a laptop will rarely be solved in a few minutes. But let’s start by going through a few solutions one by one, and see if one of these helps in speeding up your machine.

Getting Rid of Bloatware

A typical picture that emerges in most of these mass manufactured laptops is that they are littered with unnecessary additional software or even harmful junk, also referred to as bloatware. You want to clear out everything that is not essential, usually this makes a difference like night and day, and it shouldn’t take more than 30 minutes of your time.

In Windows 10, you can just press the Windows Key and Type “Add or Remove Programs” to see everything that’s installed on your computer. If you are not sure what programs to get rid of, simply enter the name on Google and see if it is something important or just a program installed on your computer by the manufacturer.

Sometimes you’ll easily be able to uninstall unwanted programs. We have a guide on removing junk files in our guide on how to make Sims 4 run faster. However, some manufacturers don’t allow you to get rid of their native programs. In that case, you can go ahead and download Bulk Crap Uninstaller or PC Decrapifier to get the job done. Make sure to do some research upfront to ensure that you’re not getting rid of an essential program.

Lack of hard drive space often causes laptops to run slowly. In our article “Why is my Computer so Slow all of a Sudden?” we go over 7 ways to speed a computer up.


Eliminating Programs Running on Startup

When installing new programs, there is often a small box that is ticked by default: “run at startup”. Before you know it, you have 10 programs that all try to start up at the same time, as soon as you turn your laptop on. These programs eat up a lot of memory which can negatively affect your laptop’s performance.

You can combat this by pressing Ctrl-Alt-Delete, and going to the “Task Manager”. Once you’re in, you’ll be able to see programs that use up a lot of memory. You can then uncheck the box “run at startup” for those programs.

Disabling the Power Saver Feature

The Power Saver feature can cause your system to run slower than usual. This is especially the case with laptops and nd goes often without people noticing. Laptop manufacturers often have the default settings set to use as little power as possible to conserve battery time. There is something to be said for that, of course. But when you simply run your laptop on power from the wall outlet, these energy-saving measures will only slow down your machine.

You can quickly see if this could be the case with your laptop by:

  • Navigating to Settings (Windows Key, type Settings)
  • Go to System (usually the first option)
  • Now go to the Power and Sleep section .
  • Then to Power plans via the link Additional power settings.

Disabling Auto Windows Update

It’s possible that since your laptop is new, it is slowed down for the time being due to an update running in the background. Whenever Windows is running an update, you will see an icon at the bottom right section of your laptop’s screen. A good idea is to have the OS prompt for permission before the process goes through so you’re always aware of when an update is in progress. You can do that if you have administrator privileges.

  • Press the Windows Key + R together and type ‘regedit’
  • navigate to the following path: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows
  • Right click on the Windows folder and choose New > Key, name the key ‘WindowsUpdate’, hit Enter
  • Right click on the key you’ve just created select New > Key, name it AU, hit Enter
  • Go inside the new key, right click, choose New and click on DWORD Value, name this one ‘AUOptions’, hit Enter
  • Double click on the final key you’ve just created and change the current value to 2, click OK, close

Cleaning Up Virus or Malware

Is your laptop suddenly slow, unresponsive or unable to access the internet? Then it could be that your computer has become infected with malware, spyware or a virus. Always make sure you have an up-to-date virus scanner installed to avoid these problems.

Windows 10 has a very reasonable virus scanner as standard, which usually protects your laptop. However, this does not mean that your laptop will never be able to become infected with a virus or other malware. If your PC machine is significantly slower than when you bought it, Go ahead and scan your system for viruses. The faster you discover and eliminate malware, the less damage it can cause to your computer.

You also want to go ahead and download fast browser such as Google Chrome. Look for drivers and updates. If you’ve done all that, restarted your machine, and yet it is sluggish it is possible that that your RAM or the hard drive may be defective. However, before you jump to that conclusion, it’s a good idea to format your system once and see if that fixes things.

Formatting Your New Laptop

Getting rid of bloatware and unnecessary startup programs does not always help your laptop reach the desired speed. If that is the case, you should consider formatting the hard disk / SSD, the drive partition – and reinstalling Windows from scratch.

If you have saved any files on your laptop, make sure to do a backup first so you can access them later on. Insert your Windows CD / DVD in your drive, for newer computers without an optical drive, you can download the Windows 10 ISO file and create a bootable USB Drive using a free tool such as Power ISO

Restart the PC and wait for the prompt to press any key, follow the prompt. As soon as the computer starts back up, you’re going to follow the instructions on the screen where you will get the option of formatting and / or deleting the system partition.

If you’re ok with your current partitions, then you can skip making the partition and just select the partition with the existing Windows to overwrite with a fresh one. (The windows.old folder is created with a backup of the old Windows.) Once you have confirmed the Windows installation on an existing / fresh partition, wait for the setup procedure to end. You’re going to have to sit by your computer and confirm queries in between, for example entering the Wi-Fi password.

Important: The entry of a serial number is mandatory for Windows 8.1 installation (if the DVD is not specially adapted via an ei.cfg file or Windows 8.1 has been installed in advance with a key stored in the UEFI BIOS ACPI tables), with Windows 10 key entry is optional.

If you are using Windows 8 (.1) or 10, you can alternatively renew the system using the refresh function; a CD or a USB drive in this case is not required. In Windows 8.1, press Windows-C and click on “Settings> Change PC settings> Update / recovery> Recovery> Let’s go”. For Windows 10 (1903), use the Windows i key combination and click on “Update and Security> Recovery> Let’s go”. One way to quickly access the reset feature: Press Windows-R and type in system reset.

Updating Hardware (If it is not up to the mark)

Did you go through the steps above and still have your new laptop running slow? It is possible that your laptop isn’t performing up to par due to overheating. When the laptop gets too hot, it will automatically slow down to prevent the temperature from rising further. This process is called ‘ thermal throttling ‘. You may be pushing your computer beyond it’s abilities. If you’re running powerful software on a low end processor with not enough storage or RAM, then you’re bound to run into issues and upgrading your hardware may be the only way to make your laptop go faster.

Unlike a desktop PC, it is not possible to upgrade the processor (CPU) or the graphics chip (GPU) on a laptop. These are integrated in the motherboard of a laptop, and therefore cannot be removed. The two components that you can often upgrade are the hard disk / storage and the memory (RAM).

Upgrade Your Storage from an HDD to an SSD

Many old laptops use an HDD (Hard Disk Drive) for file storage. Data is stored and read from rotating discs. If your laptop uses an HDD, you can replace it with an SSD. An SSD is another type of storage that does not use disks, but memory chips. SSDs are about 3-4 times faster when it comes to reading and writing files.

Files are read when a program is started. The faster this goes, the faster the program will start. This also applies when starting your operating system, such as Windows. If you replace the HDD of your laptop with an SSD, the laptop will boot up much faster.

The most commonly used SSD in laptops is the 2.5 inch SATA SSD. One of the fastest ones is currently the Samsung EVO 860. Before you install the SSD in your laptop, you will have to transfer all files from the HDD.

Upgrading your RAM

RAM stands for Random-Access Memory and is the ‘working memory’ of your computer. This is where data is temporarily made available to perform functions within programs, or to edit this data before saving it to your HDD or SSD. RAM consists of ‘dynamic’ memory chips that can be quickly rewritten and read. When you close a program and open another program, the RAM can forget the data of the first program without any problems.

If you don’t have enough RAM, your computer will instead create a ‘swap file’ on your hard which would be considerably slower, and a big reason why your laptop may run slower when you have several different programs running at the same time.There are certain programs that use a lot of RAM. For example, video editing programs, where multiple video files must be available in RAM at the same time.

However, simple programs, such as web browsers, may also end up using a lot of RAM. You can view the current RAM usage of the various processes on your laptop in the Windows Task Manager. If the memory usage within the task manager is high, then more RAM will make your laptop faster.

If your laptop brand RAM chips are expensive, maybe consider a cheaper option? Read Can You Mix RAM Brands? to see if you can upgrade your RAM using a cheaper brand.


Malfunctioning Parts? Warranty Claim or Return Your Laptop!

It is not always software, your OS or viruses that slow down your laptop. A malfunctioning component may very well be the reason why your machine is performing poorly. It’s not unusual for mass produced produced laptops to have hardware defects from the get-go, so you need to be a bit more cautious when purchasing laptops that are cheap and sold in bulk quantities.

For example, your laptop fan may not be working properly causing your processor to heat up, resulting in poor performance. When your processor becomes too hot, it switches to an emergency mode to prevent damage. The computer will run significantly slower than normal in this mode. Even a hard drive that is on the verge of failure can cause your computer to become excruciatingly slow.

If you find yourself in this position, or if nothing else works and you suspect the laptop is defective, then immediately return the machine and swap it for a new one. Most manufacturers have excellent warranties and most stores have a no questions asked 30 day return policy.