Your laptop relies on its random-access memory (RAM) to run your programs and access your files properly. You may notice that your computer runs slowly over time because of too much information loaded onto the RAM. If you’re looking for a quick fix for your sluggish laptop, you’ve come to the right place.
There are four easy ways to clean your laptop memory:
- Delete unnecessary files from your computer
- Change some values in the Windows Registry
- Clear memory cache on a regular basis
- Disable “Superfetch” from Windows Services
4 ways to clean your laptop RAM for better overall performance
1. Delete unnecessary files from your computer
The “Temp” and “Prefetch” folders on your laptop hold some unnecessary files that slow down your computer’s performance by taking up both memory and storage space. By cleaning up these folders, your laptop will run more efficiently thanks to less memory usage.
It’s always a good practice that you must regularly delete all the files contained in these folders – don’t worry, it’s perfectly safe to delete these files and deleting them won’t mess up with your computer at all.
Step 1: Start by clicking on the Start Menu, type Run, and hit Enter or click the search result for the Run application
Step 2: Type %temp% on the text field within the Run program then hit Enter or click OK. You should see a window showing the folder with the path “Your PC Name > AppData > Local > Temp”.
Step 3: Select every file contained in this folder by pressing Ctrl+A or by dragging your cursor across all the files.
Step 4: After selecting all the files in this folder, right-click on any highlighted area and click Delete. Then click Yes once you see a prompt asking if you want to move the files to the Recycle Bin.
Step 5: Click the Start Menu again and type Run. Hit Enter or click the search result for the Run application.
Step 6: On the Run window, type prefetch on the text field, then hit Enter or click OK. You should see a window showing the folder with the path “Computer > Name of your primary disk drive (C:) > Windows > Prefetch”
Step 7: Just like the previous steps, select every file contained in this folder by pressing Ctrl+A or by dragging your cursor across all the files.
Step 8: Right-click on any highlighted area and click Delete. Then click Yes once you see a prompt asking if you want to move the files to the Recycle Bin.
Step 9: Close all open windows and restart your computer
2. Change some values in the Windows Registry
Advanced PC users will attest to the fact that carefully tweaking the Windows Registry reaps the benefits of a better performing laptop with generally faster boot and response times as a result.
Modifying registry values in the Windows Registry is often reserved for advanced users since placing certain values incorrectly may corrupt the system and may even prevent your computer from booting up.
However, for the purpose of boosting your computer’s performance through optimizing memory usage, tweaking the registry a little bit will result in better performance all throughout.
Take note that this is a one-time operation – you won’t need to do this specific task again in the future.
Step 1: Start by clicking the Start Menu, type “regedit” (without the quotes), then hit Enter or click the result. You should see the Registry Editor program running.
Step 2: On the left hand side of the Windows Registry, locate an entry called HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE, and click the dropdown arrow next to it.
Step 3: Locate an entry called SYSTEM and click the dropdown arrow next to it.
Step 4: Locate an entry called ControlSet001 and click the dropdown arrow next to it.
Step 5: Locate an entry called Services and click the dropdown arrow next to it.
Step 6: Locate an entry called NDU. You should see some options on the right-side pane.
Step 7: On the list of options listed under NDU, find the item labeled “Start” under the Name column, right-click it and select Modify.
Step 8: You should now see a small pop-up window labeled “Edit DWORD (32-bit) Value”. On this window, replace the value data to 4 (the default value data is 2), then click OK or hit Enter.
Step 9: Close the Registry Editor program, then restart your computer.
3. Clear memory cache on a regular basis
Clearing out the memory cache of your laptop is a good way to keep idle processes from taking up all the precious memory space on your computer.
By doing so, you’ll always have enough memory to keep your actively running programs running smoothly and efficiently.
The easiest approach in doing this step is by creating a desktop shortcut that automatically runs a script (set of instructions) once you open it.
Step 1: On your Windows desktop, right-click anywhere and choose New > Shortcut.
Step 2: You should see a window that says “What item would you like to create a shortcut for?”. On the text field asking the location of the shortcut, copy and paste this entire string of text: %windir%\system32\rundll32.exe advapi32.dll,ProcessIdleTasks
Step 3: Click Next, then type any description for the shortcut you’re about to create (for example, “Clear memory”). Click Finish to create the shortcut.
Step 4: Try opening the shortcut by double-clicking it, and you should notice an increase in performance especially in opening programs and files, and navigating the user interface. Do this every time you feel your computer is running slower than usual.
4. Disable “Superfetch” from Windows Services
The Superfetch is a background process in Windows computers designed to “maintain and improve system performance over time”, as its description states.
However, it runs in the background from startup to shutdown, taking unnecessary memory space in your laptop. It’s safe to disable this background process in order to shelve some precious computer memory that your laptop could use for other useful programs that you normally run.
These steps walk you through disabling the Superfetch process.
Step 1: Start by opening the Run application by right-clicking the Start Menu, then click Run.
Step 2: On the Run application window, type services.msc on the text field then hit Enter or click OK. You should see the Services window after doing so.
Step 3: Under the Services (Local) tab, scroll down the list and locate Superfetch. Right-click on it and select Stop. After clicking Stop, right-click on it again and select Properties.
Step 4: On the Superfetch Properties (Local Computer) window, locate the drop-down menu called Startup type. Click the dropdown menu, then click Disabled. Click OK to confirm.
Step 5: Close the Services window, then restart your computer.
Cleaning up your laptop memory vs. buying a new PC or upgrading the RAM: what gives?
You may start to wonder how these tricks actually stack up against the fact that you could simply get a faster machine either by buying a new one or replacing some of its parts like the RAM.
Here’s the deal.
You should save your hard-earned money and try to maximize the full potential of your computer (which in itself has been working hard for you since the day you bought it), because there’s so much more than you can do with it. This guide will help you unlock that potential.
Using your computer over prolonged time periods without performing regular upkeep will surely take a toll on its overall performance. Luckily we’ve outlined these simple tricks for you, and you’ll find that you can squeeze out so much more from your existing hardware.
If you’re looking for a foolproof solution to your slow laptop, take the time to follow these steps. Your laptop and wallet will thank you for doing so.