Don’t you just hate it when your computer seems to take forever to boot? Windows is designed to boot lightning fast, and if your PC takes more than 20 seconds to boot, we’ll show you exactly how to get rid of the computer startup slow issue.
Boot-up time can be affected by various issues, such as the number of applications installed or peripherals connected to your PC. As you are aware, there’s a lot of information addressing this issue on the internet.
However, this article separates the myths from the facts to give you the top 10 ways to speed up your computer’s startup time.
1. Delete programs/software you rarely use
PCs come pre-installed with programs you may never use. Likewise, you may have installed apps that ran out of their usefulness such as trial versions.
Such programs take up space and slow down your computer. It’s a good idea to uninstall or disable all the apps you don’t use.
To do this:
- Click the Start Menu and type control panel.
- Choose ‘Control Panel’, then navigate to Programs > Uninstall a program.
- Scroll through until you locate the program(s) you want to uninstall.
- Right-click the program and click Uninstall.
2. Limit the number of startup programs
Software manufacturers design their programs to start automatically during Windows startup. These applications run in the background, and you won’t even notice them. This is useful, especially if you use those programs frequently because they will open right away when you click them.
However, for programs that you rarely use, it’s a waste of memory that will slow your PC’s boot time. To speed up the startup time, you need to identify the startup programs that you do not need and disable them.
A quick way to check this is via the notification area on the taskbar. Remember to click the ‘Show Hidden Icons’ button to find other programs. But not all startup programs are shown here.
To find and disable startup programs on Windows 10 or Windows 8.1:
- Close all running programs. Right-click the Start Menu and click Task Manager (alternatively, use the CTRL + Shift + ESC keys).
- Click ‘Startup tab’ at the top (click More details if you can’t find the Startup tab).
- You’ll see a list of programs that load during startup. To disable a program from this list, right-click it and select ‘Disable.’
- Repeat step 3 for all the programs you want to prevent from loading automatically.
- Restart your computer to effect the changes.
Disabling startup programs in Windows 7 via System Configuration Utility:
- Press Win + R on the keyboard and type msconfig in the Run dialog box. Press Enter (or click OK).
- Click the Startup tab and uncheck all the applications that you don’t want to run at startup. While some programs are obvious such as Microsoft OneDrive, others are cryptic, and you may want to research what they do before unchecking them.
- After making your selections, click OK and ‘Restart’ to restart your PC.
If that doesn’t solve the issue, keep going.
3. Reduce Boot Time-out value
During startup, Windows allocates a few seconds to allow you to choose your operating system (if you run more than one operating system on your PC). Additionally, Windows allows you to choose an action from the boot menu before the system loads.
The default time-out is set at 30 seconds. For faster startup time, you can reduce the time-out value in two easy methods.
- Use the shortcut keys Win + R (where Win is the Windows logo key) to open the Run box.
- Type msconfig and press Enter to access the System Configuration window.
- Click the ‘Boot tab’ and adjust the Timeout value to your liking.
- Click Apply > OK.
- Reboot your computer to apply the changes.
- From the Start Menu, go to Control Panel > Settings > Advanced system settings.
- Navigate to Startup and Recovery, then click Settings.
- Under System Startup, go to Time to display list of operating systems and reduce the value.
- Click OK to restart your PC.
If the changes don’t speed up your PC’s boot time, try the next tip.
4. Upgrade your RAM
Among other functions, Random Access Memory (RAM) temporarily stores data that is currently running when your computer is on.
Undoubtedly, increasing your RAM will speed up your computer, including the boot time. A computer with a 1GB RAM will take ages to load, whereas a computer with an 8GB RAM will boot in a split second.
A larger RAM is very important, especially if you are using a lot of programs that automatically start during startup.
Additional RAM will cost you some money, but it is worthwhile if you want to enjoy faster boot times.
5. Update your PC’s Drivers
So, you’ve tried the above solutions, but nothing seems to work? If you’re still wondering how to fix slow PC boot, updating drivers might solve the issue.
The good news is that you don’t have to be an advanced PC user to know how to update drivers. Auslogics Driver Updater is designed to do the hard work for you. Think of drivers as the software that enables seamless communication between Windows and connected devices or hardware.
If drivers are outdated, some devices won’t function properly, and this may slow down your PC. However, with Auslogics Driver Updater, you get to update all your drivers with one click. The software detects missing or outdated drivers on your PC and installs only the latest version of manufacturer-recommended drivers.
Since updating drivers is a sensitive issue, Auslogics Driver Updater creates backups to ensure the safety of your PC. This allows you to restore previous driver versions if you don’t like the updated version.
It’s a win-win situation. You save the time you could’ve used searching for drivers online, and at the same time, reduce your computer’s startup time.
6. Modify your BIOS
BIOS in all computers comes with default settings. For the most part, you can use your computer without changing anything. However, with time, you’ll notice there are settings that no longer apply to your configuration.
To change the settings, hold the DEL key (this may vary from one PC to another) to open the BIOS Setup Utility. Then, you can either:
- Enable ‘Quick Boot’ to skip tests that your computer performs while booting.
- Disable any hardware that you’re currently not using.
- Move your hard disk and set it as a top priority. This tells your PC to boot without looking for CDs and other media during startup.
- Remember to save any changes you make to the BIOS before rebooting your computer.
7. Install an SSD
Booting from the Solid State Drive (SSD) is faster than booting from the Hard Disk Drive (HDD). To boost startup time, install the operating system on the SSD and save all the other files on your HDD.
You’ll immediately notice a huge difference in the startup time. Installing an SSD will mean digging deeper into your pockets because they don’t come cheap.
If you’re not sure how to install an SSD, it’s recommended to take your PC to a computer technician.
8. Upgrade Windows
The release of Windows 10 saw an improvement in boot time among other advanced features. If you’re using Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 on your PC, making the switch to Windows 10 guarantees to solve the issue of slow PC boot time.
First, you have to ensure your PC meets the requirements of installing and running Windows 10. These include:
- At least 1GHz Processor
- At least 1GB RAM
- A minimum HDD space of 16GB
- DirectX 9 or later
You can use a USB drive to easily install Windows 10. Also, remember to keep your Windows up to date to experience even faster boot time.
To manually check for Windows 10 updates:
- Click the Start Menu > Settings > Update and Security Settings > Windows Update.
- Click on the Check for updates button.
If there are any updates available, press the Install now button. If prompted, press the Restart now button
9. Disk Cleanup
The more you use your computer, the more junk files accumulate on your hard disk. The result is slow PC boot. To access Disk Cleanup in Windows 7:
- Click Start Menu
- Navigate to Programs > Accessories > System Tools and click Disk Cleanup
- Click Clean up system files
- Click Delete
In Windows 8.1 and Windows 10:
- Click the Start Menu and start typing disk clean up
- Click Disk Cleanup and select the drive that you want to clean
- Check the files you want to delete and click OK
- Click Delete files in the prompt window that follows
10. Disable visual effects
A common question that springs up when it comes to choosing performance vs appearance is, “what if my PC boots too slow?”
If your PC boots slower than normal, you might have to lose some or all of those effects. Here’s how to optimise:
- Click Start Menu and go to Control Panel
- Locate Settings, then go to Advanced system settings
- Navigate to Settings under Performance
- Select ‘Adjust for best performance’
- If you want to use a few visual effects, check the ‘Let Windows choose what’s best for my computer’ option.
- Click Apply > OK.
A faster PC is all that really matters if you want to work smoothly. We hope these tips will help you figure out how to fix slow PC boot.
If you have other suggestions to speed up startup time on your PC, please let us know in the comments.