7 Tips to Keep WinXP Running Fast & Smooth

Windows XP is the most targeted system when it comes to viruses, spyware, and malware. You want to make sure that you are doing your best to keep your computer running healthy.

  1. Do not install software unless it is completely necessary. Extra software slows down your system. If you don't need it, don't install it. In fact, go into your control panel, select 'Add/Remove Programs', and remove any programs that you don't use. Make sure that you don't need it before removing it or consult an IT specialist to be sure.
  2. Do not install toolbars. If a program requests permission to install a toolbar in your version of MS Internet Explorer, just say no. Most toolbars contain spyware and malware that will slow your system down.
  3. Keep your startup programs to a minimum. Look in your system tray and see all the icons there (small little icons next to your system clock). Chances are, there are several programs that you don't even know about. Configure those programs so that they do not run at startup (check that program's documentation or consult an IT specialist).
  4. Defragment your drive regularly. Run the defragment utility by going to Start > Programs> Accessories > System Tools about once a month. This makes sure that your hard drive files are in order and they can be accessed quickly.
  5. Keep your anti-virus and anti-spyware software up to date. I recommend AVG Anti-Virus for Windows computers. They have a free version for personal use as well as inexpensive versions for companies. I also recommend Adaware and Spybot Search & Destroy to keep spyware off your computer. Always remember to keep these programs up to date as well.
  6. Be careful of the websites you visit. Viruses and spyware can enter your computer through websites that have malicious code in them.
  7. Configure your computer for automatic updates. I don't like Microsoft automatically updating any system, but is the best way to keep your computer secure. Go into your control panel and click on Automatic Updates. Adjust those settings accordingly.

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