I know its normal practice for a PC to 'slow down' over a period of time like start-up becoming slower etc. but does anyone know of a program (sharware/payware or otherwise) that can 'clean' yoiur system up?
I'm not computer literate enought to trawl through my registry and fix problems. Clean-up and de-frag are about my limit!
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Usually it is the harddisk that slows the system down, as it fills up with all sort of programs and temporary files you install, or your applications generate. It is recommended to Start > Programs > Accesoires > System Tools > Disk Cleanup your system from time to time. Also be sure to use the Start > Programs > Accesoires > System Tools > Disk Defragmenter once every few weeks, to keep you disk in optimal condition. Other than that uninstall applications you don't use and keep the amount of applications that run automatically when Windows starts to a minimum. Virus scanners and other programs that constantly monitor the system could also substantially slow it down, disable their continues monitoring and simply do a virusscan every week or so to keep out of harms way.
What I do is run a program called MSCONFIG (under Win 98 SE) - go to Start - Run, type in box msconfig then hit OK - go to the Startup tab at end then you can see the programmes which your system is loading as default when you boot up - basically you should only be loading here what you run - if you do not require it, untick it's box. Word of advise - take a note of ALL settings before making ANY changes to allow you to return to present state.
You're only as good as your last clean install!
Sounds like you have a lot of spyware running in the background. You could try downloading and using spybot S&D. It gets all the adware that other programs like spyblast and spyware blaster leave behind.
I personally do not rely on anti spyware software, or software firewalls;
I know it is a headache, but I prefere to wipe and reinstall everything. although, There's no reason to do it manually anymore. If you have a CD writer, you should look into Ghost software. It allows you to make an image of your computer for restoration purposes. I try to do this about every 6 months
And because of malicious spyware and virus's, you should be in the habbit of backing up precious work and software to a CDRW, zip, or server.
Old habbit (pre dos 6.22 days) are hard to kill. I rember watching Norton disk doctor taking about 2 hours on my old Gateway 486 Dx 25.... when Windows 3.1 was barely making it's debut, I was still using Xtree Gold. ...lol