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The 9 Root Causes of PC Slowdowns
by James D. Nardell,  iolo Affiliate Management Team


Eliminate the worst speed-draining culprits
We've all noticed that the longer we've had our computers, the slower they've gotten. In fact,
the problem is so common that people assume it's unavoidable and just part of the natural
aging process of PCs.

But the truth is that your computer isn't slower because of the age of its components; rather, the
root causes of a PC slowing down are fragmentation and corruption problems that can be easily
fixed with the right tools.
What causes slowdowns?
After years of investigation and testing, iolo Labs researchers have uncovered the nine key
areas of a Windows PC that degrade over time—these are the issues that most significantly
slow down your PC and diminish its performance.

Several of these issues iolo has known about for some time and the related fixes were included
in prior versions of
System Mechanic®. But others were just recently discovered after extensive
research into how modern operating systems and programs function and interoperate.

System Mechanic is now the only available product that can resolve all nine root causes of
PC slowdowns. By focusing on these nine critical areas and running the System Mechanic
repairs described in this article, you will experience noticeably better performance: both your
PC and your programs will launch quicker, work faster, and perform with greater reliability.
1. Program misalignment
2. Memory leaks and RAM fragmentation
3. Startup Traffic Jam
4. Redundant and unneeded programs
5. Mismatched Internet Settings
6. Registry Errors
7. Registry Bloat
8. Hard Drive Fragmentation
9. Accumulated junk file clutter


1. Program Misalignment

The Symptoms: Your programs take longer to open and, once opened, they respond more
slowly. When you have multiple applications running, you experience lockups or crashes.

The Problem: Over time, the many interdependent files that make up a program tend to drift
apart and become scattered across the hard drive. This misalignment not only impacts the
speed at which your programs can run, it also causes excessive movement of the hard drive,
which leads to unnecessary wear-and-tear on your hardware.

The Fix:
Program Accelerator™ uses a patented calibration technology to determine which
program files are misaligned and should be grouped together for the fastest possible access.
Once the dependent application files are realigned, the result is faster launching and more
responsive performance from all of your programs.


2. Memory leaks and RAM fragmentation

The Symptoms: Your PC gets progressively slower throughout the day, even after restarting.
One or more of your larger programs frequently lock up. You regularly see low memory error
messages.

The Problem: When memory is low, everything on your PC suffers. The two critical problems
that reduce your available RAM are (1) fragmented memory, which occurs simply with regular
use—as we open, use, and close programs, and (2) memory leaks, which occur when a
program doesn't release memory after the program is closed.

The Fix:
Memory Mechanic® reclaims valuable memory and tackles both corruption issues: it
reassembles the memory into neat, contiguous order and it releases the memory held captive
by memory leaks.


3. Startup Traffic Jam

The Symptoms: Your PC takes longer to start than it used to, as long as 5-10 minutes in severe
cases. Every time you start or restart your computer, you see unusual error messages.

The Problem: Many applications and services are set to automatically start whenever your PC
is started. Some of these programs are required and should be in the startup process, but many
are not needed at all and create bottlenecks that slow down the time it takes for your PC to
boot up.

The Fix:
Startup Optimizer™ uses research-based classifications from iolo Labs to
automatically detect unneeded (as well as potentially dangerous) startup items. Your important
programs load, but the unnecessary ones are prevented from clogging up the Windows startup
process.


4. Redundant and unneeded programs

The Symptoms: PC speed and responsiveness have slowed over time, particularly when
running more than one program.

The Problem: As a rule, the more programs you have installed, the more work your PC has to
do—and installing multiple programs that run the same functions needlessly adds to this
burden. But with certain redundant programs, the problem goes beyond just wasted storage
space and a larger processing load; for these applications, having multiple ones installed is
actively harmful because it overloads background functioning and leads to system conflicts that
slow everything down.

The Fix:
CRUDD Remover™ detects and displays the redundant programs that can impact
your PC's performance and stability, and then you can decide which programs you want to
keep or remove. By removing redundant programs, you eliminate unnecessary processing, free
up drive space, and remove program conflicts.


5. Mismatched Internet Settings

The Symptoms: Your internet connection has recently started to feel sluggish or it has always
been slower than expected, even with a high-speed connection. Video and other streaming
media sputter when played. Online gaming randomly falters.

The Problem: A significant influence on your web speed is a set of Windows configuration
settings related to network and internet connections. PCs come from the manufacturer with
certain settings already in place, but these presets are not necessarily the best settings for your
connection type. Further, various programs can make silent adjustments to these core settings.

The Fix:
NetBooster® and Internet Connection Repair technology automatically custom fits
your computer to suit your internet connection. By adjusting the settings that affect network and
internet connection speeds, NetBooster fine-tunes your configurations so that more data can be
transferred.


6. Registry Errors

The Symptoms: You experience instability issues that can range from annoying, time-wasting
lockups to complete machine failure. You see unusual error messages when printing, opening
programs, attaching or detaching external devices, or restarting your PC.

The Problem: The registry, a database that holds key settings used by the Windows operating
system, is one of the most important components of your computer. When it becomes corrupted
with invalid and obsolete references, as it commonly does with regular PC usage, the overall
condition of your computer declines: both speed and stability are negatively impacted.

The Fix:
Registry Tuner™, which can be run individually or as a component of Total Registry
Revitalizer™, repairs the registry by removing all of its invalid and obsolete references. The
cleaning and repair process can also detect and remove dangerous files that may be running
without your knowledge.


7. Registry Bloat

The Symptoms: Overall PC speed and responsiveness have slowed over time, particularly
when starting up or shutting down the computer.

The Problem: After cleaning the registry, old registry keys are deleted, but the registry does not
get smaller. Rather, the old entries leave gaps and the registry becomes bloated: unnecessarily
large and fragmented. And because the registry is loaded into RAM during startup, the bloat
also eats up vital system memory.

The Fix:
Registry Compactor™, which can be run individually or as a component of
Total Registry Revitalizer™, defragments and compacts the registry to eliminate the bloated
and unused space in the registry. Because the process allows the operating system to access
registry values faster, it speeds registry access, improves registry efficiency, and frees up
memory.


8. Hard Drive Fragmentation

The Symptoms: Overall PC speed and responsiveness have slowed over time. Files and
programs take longer to open.

The Problem: As you create and delete files, your computer can't store a single file as one unit
and instead will split it up and store portions of it across different locations on the hard drive.
Over time, this fragmented data builds up and your PC's resources become overburdened:
gathering the scattered pieces takes more time and the physical wear on the mechanical parts
of the drive increases.

The Fix:
DriveAccelerator™ defragments the hard drive and reorganizes scattered data,
which not only boosts file access speed but also extends the life of the drive. In addition,
DriveAccelerator works in conjunction with Program Accelerator to maintain drive integrity
during the program realignment process.


9. Accumulated junk file clutter

The Symptoms: You experience slower responsiveness, particularly during intensive operations
like media streaming and game play. Your available disk space has noticeably decreased.

The Problem: With regular usage, junk files quickly accumulate on your PC: unneeded debris
can come from internet browsing, programs that don't clean up after themselves, unexpected
computer restarts, and more. And while the source of the clutter varies, the result is the same:
gigabytes of drive space wasted and your PC's processing load needlessly overtaxed.

The Fix:
PC Cleanup, one of System Mechanic's five all-in-one PowerTools™,
analyzes your computer's level of clutter and then performs a deep cleaning by safely removing
all the temporary and useless files that have accumulated.



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