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PC cleanup programs.

PJBee

Standard Member
From time to time my p.c seems to run more slowly and I wonder if it needs the "cleanup" that some security firms claim and offer to carry out. Some of them F.O.C.
I am using the Avast antivirus free version, and apply defrag' and Crap Cleaner programs fairly regularly.
Do I need the "cleanup" suggested and if so who do I use because I am told that many offering this service are just a waste of time .
Any advice/suggestions would be much appreciated.
PJBEE
 

MacrosTheBlack

Prominent Member
Windows can get itself into a bit of a mess sometimes and cleanup's can help. But certainly don't recommend bundled clean up tools or any that want you to pay for them.

Defragging - Fine if you have a HDD (hard drive) but unless you're constantly moving around masses of data once a year is fine. DON'T defrag Solid State (SSD's)!!!

You have Avast, but always a good idea to run a separate Anti-Malware program, Malwarebytes is good. Stick with the freebie, don't bother with the trial upgrade.

CCleaner - IMO a great cleanup tool. It will empty caches, and temp folders bringing back space and the registry cleaner is good too (but do backup the registry when prompted just in case). Also, providing your computer's running fine, I'd go into the tools section and cleanup your system restore points too.

Lastly I also like the built in Windows Cleanup tool. Right click a drive and choose properties and you will see the windows cleanup option. Is you do the cleanup system files option too it will clear down old windows update files etc.

Other than that, you can check your drivers are up to date and Windows updates are all installed. If you're using Internet Explorer, stop, download Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox browsers instead as they are much faster.

If it's still slow you might want to consider backing up your files etc and doing a full rebuild of Windows.

Also check you have enough ram in your system, these days I'd say 4GB minimum if it's a 64bit OS? If you have the funds and your pc has a reasonably recent spec (say up to 5 years old) changing from a HDD to SSD will give the best and a very noticeable performance boost. You can also do that fresh Windows rebuild at the same time.
 

EndlessWaves

Distinguished Member
It's a subject where there's a lot of 'I've always done it this way and it works well so this must be a good thing to do'. Long term speed/stability is also a difficult thing to objectively test.

Personally I don't bother there days. Windows Vista and above seems to do an excellent job in maintaining long term stability and using troubleshooting tools like CCleaner on a regular basis just seems like asking for trouble by trying to fix something that ain't broken.

What are the symptoms of your slow downs? Does it affect particular programs or happen in particular situations?
 

MacrosTheBlack

Prominent Member
Agree and disagree with EndlessWaves on his statement here. Windows does a reasonable job of keeping itself tidy. However it does like to build up temp files all over the place. As do the programs you install. This is where CCleaner can come in handy.

Providing you are reasonably technical, you install decent programs, know how to stay safe online from viruses and malware, then you can keep Windows running happily for years and years without a rebuild or too much tidying up.

However in my day job I see hundreds of pc's that have click happy business and home users with no, or next to no training and they can often ruin a nicely setup pc in hours....
 

MarkE19

Moderator
Agree and disagree with EndlessWaves on his statement here. Windows does a reasonable job of keeping itself tidy. However it does like to build up temp files all over the place. As do the programs you install. This is where CCleaner can come in handy.
Agree, it can sometimes be an advantage to manually clean up the collected Temp files from a PC. I look after around 500 remote users with company laptops and on the odd occasion I get them back I always remove the temp files using the methods (excluding Ccleaner, I do it all manually) advised by MacrosTheBlack and it does make a fair difference to performance.
Additionally running a Defrag & Optimise in Auslogics Disk Defrag also helps a fair bit, especially if the HDD is fairly full - I use the portable version so no install making it quicker to get running.
However in my day job I see hundreds of pc's that have click happy business and home users with no, or next to no training and they can often ruin a nicely setup pc in hours....
I find the worst end users are those with a little knowledge as they tend to think they know it all and therefore do more damage.

Mark.
 

PJBee

Standard Member
Macros The Black - - - Endless Waves - - - MarkE19
Many thanks to all of you for your advice and helpful comments, which I will use where I can.

My 64 bit system has 6 GB RAM. An engineer installed an SSD and reallocated files about 2 years ago. Currently the SSD has "919 Gb free of 931 GB". and the "HDD 31.1 GB free of 119 GB".
I have wondered if there is an imbalance between discs which might cause problems.
Should this be so is there a correct procedure for transferring files from one disc to the other ?

I have not been able to identify anything regular in its general slowness but it does seem to happen more often when in Quicken 2002 home accounts, (old but I cant find a suitable replacement), and also occasionally when browsing the web. (broadband fibre installed with speed regularly recorded at between 12 - 14 mb. With these two exceptions I feel that the condition is generally irregular.
However, I will apply your suggestions and eventually report back.
I should say that as an 85-er non techie, I agree totally that in all things a little knowledge can be most dangerous, hence my plea for help.
Thanks again.
PJBEE
 

MacrosTheBlack

Prominent Member
Have you definitely got those figures the right way round!?!?! You have an SSD that's barely used, only 12GB and a fairly small HDD at 120GB of which you are using 90GB???

I suspect it might be you have that reversed? Unless your "engineer" hadn't a clue what they were doing.

If you really do have a massive 930GB SSD drive then everything should be installed on that and ditch the old HDD entirely.

Oh and FYI, it's disk for referring to an SSD or HDD. Disc is the term for optical media like CD's, DVD's etc.

Slowness in Quicken 2002 is quite possible, that old software won't of been designed to run on a 64bit OS.

Next up you have Fibre running at 12-14MB??? That sounds far too slow! Are you wired to the router or wireless?
 

PJBee

Standard Member
Without thinking I assumed that my C disk was HDD and D was SSD whereas the reverse must be the case as the SSD is positively 128 GB. Sorry I misled you.
TalkTalk call it Fibre Broadband with a download speed up to 17Mb/s. I'm currently getting between 14 -15.
As a first step I have switched to Google Chrome. You're right. Its a definite improvement.
Thanks again.
 

MacrosTheBlack

Prominent Member
Right so a C drive of 128GB and being the SSD makes total sense with the much large slower 1TB HDD being extra data on D.

C drive is where Windows will be installed to and likely all your programs too. This is what you want as they benefit from the faster SSD speeds.

Yep Chrome or Firefox will be much nicer for web browsing than Internet Explorer, so glad you've made the change there.

Now for the broadband - Talktalk offer "Simple Broadband" of up to 17Mbps, this will be using ADSL2+ technology and 14-15Mbps download speeds you are getting is pretty good. So check your statements and ensure this is what you are paying for. If you are paying for "Fibre" you are not getting it currently and will need to phone Talktalk to ask why you haven't been upgraded and demand a refund for the time you've been paying for the extra speed you aren't getting.

So "Fibre Broadband" is a lot faster than ADSL2+ with packages of up to 38Mbps, or 76Mbps. Fibre still uses your telephone line but an engineer will visit to swap your line over at the local telephone cabinet, this then has the fast fibre links back to the telephone exchange. From the cabinet to your house it remains copper wiring. Know in the trade as FTTC (Fibre To The Cabinet) Exchange to Street Cabinets. Some areas have FTTP (Fibre To The Premises) and obviously the faster fibre line then runs all the way from your local exchange to your house. As such they often offer even faster internet speeds.

So if you have a lot of internet devices online at once, do a lot of streaming video or large downloads, paying for Fibre can be useful. If not 14Mbps is fine for general web browsing and light video streaming etc.

Hope that helps!
 

PJBee

Standard Member
MacrosThe Black.

Many thanks for all of your kind advice. I have not been able to do too much yet but hope to very soon.
Meanwhile I am already seeing an improvement in times so here's hoping.

Thanks again.

Regards.

PJBEE.
 

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