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Disk Cleanup

To test the speed of your Internet connection, visit speedtest. Despite some differences, both PC Tools and System Mechanic provide a host of tools to automatically clean your computer. Bad news for Apple users: Very few third-party programs will clean up a Mac, in part because of the way Apple maintains its proprietary operating system.


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One last dose of reality: Whether you use a PC or a Mac, sooner or later your computer will become obsolete. New operating systems require new programs, which often use more memory and resources than older computers can handle. But if you maintain your computer properly, you should be able to get about six years out of it before you need to upgrade. You may also like: How to permanently remove files from your PC. You are leaving AARP. Please return to AARP. Manage your email preferences and tell us which topics interest you so that we can prioritize the information you receive.

In the next 24 hours, you will receive an email to confirm your subscription to receive emails related to AARP volunteering. Once you confirm that subscription, you will regularly receive communications related to AARP volunteering. In the meantime, please feel free to search for ways to make a difference in your community at www. Share with facebook. Share with twitter. Share with linkedin. In general, static resources should have a cache lifetime of at least a week.

Third-party resources like ads or widgets should have a cache lifetime of at least one day. Images can play a major role in your site speed. One of the best ways to get your conversion rate to this level is including lots of helpful product images. This means that if you want to run a successful eCommerce site , images are absolutely necessary. You can see how big of an impact images make on any of your pages with a tool like Pingdom. R educing their size could likely have a big impact on how long the page takes to load. One of the easiest ways to reduce image file sizes is cropping your images to the correct size.

For example, if you want an image to appear as px wide, resize the image to that width. This requires your page to load the full image, then adjust it to the appropriate size, slowing your page. If you use the width parameter to make images appear smaller on your site, resizing those images should be a priority. You can also use this plugin to automatically resize all of the new files you upload. Before adding an image to your site, upload it into this tool and select whether you want lossy or lossless compression. JPG is generally your best option for photos. This data loss is undetectable to viewers in photos, but results in a smaller file size than most image file types.

PNGs, on the other hand, use lossless compression. If you need to have clear lines and crisp detail, PNG is the way to go.


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This is the best option for logos, screenshots, line art, and other detailed graphics. In particular, make sure to avoid empty image src codes. This can add unnecessary traffic to your servers and even corrupt user data. Fortunately, this is an easy fix to make. Either add the file path of the image you want to include, or remove the extra tags altogether.

Beyond the server that hosts your site, you can also use other networks of servers to decrease load times for your visitors. When your site is hosted on one server, each user who visits it sends requests to that same server. This means that when your site experiences high levels of traffic, the time it takes to process each request increases, slowing down load times for all of them. When you consider that high-traffic times typically present a ton of growth potential for your business, this is far from ideal.

With a CDN, you cache your site on a global network of servers. Your network might look something like this :. If a user from South Africa visits your site, thir browser could download files from a nearby server. The content that user receives is identical, but can load much faster than it would if their browser were making requests to a server that was geographically far away.

This eliminates loading lags and latency issues that users located far from hosting servers sometimes experience. The exact improvements vary between page, with pages that have lots of large images benefitting the most from a CDN. They have more data centers and focus solely on improving load times. The one you choose depends on whether you want those extra features, or just want to focus on improving speed.

These should typically be cdn. This naming format is standard practice and will be easiest to remember if you ever run into issues or need to consult a developer. And if you want to use Cloudflare, the process is even simpler. This take about one minute, and will how all of your DNS records, including any subdomains.

You can decide which ones you want to enable. Log into your registrar and navigate to your nameserver records. This is different for each registrar.

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You should see one for your root domain, and one wildcard subdomain record. But once they do, your CDN is serving the secure version of your site — exactly like your origin server. You create, edit, and export the video file. Your first thought might be to upload the video directly to your site via your FTP or WordPress editor. When you host videos on your own server, they take up a ton of space. Video files can easily take up over MB. If you use a shared server, you have a limited amount of space.

Videos can make you quickly exceed this limit. In some cases, large video files may even violate your terms of Acceptable Use, which can end up getting your hosting account shut down altogether. And even if you can upload large videos to your hosting provider, it will likely provide a poor user experience. If multiple users attempt to watch a video on your site at the same time, your server will need to deliver that huge file to all of them.

If your server has a limited amount of bandwidth, this can result in lags and pauses in playback. Instead, host your video on a third-party service like YouTube , Vimeo , or Wistia. When most people think of online video, they think of YouTube. The biggest potential advantage to YouTube is that it can help you reach a larger audience.

The one notable downside to YouTube is that it has a minute limit for most videos. After YouTube, Vimeo is the second-largest video hosting platform with million views per month. So while it still has the potential to get your videos in front of a new audience, your potential audience smaller than it would be with YouTube. The platform offers comprehensive analytics, including where your visitors come from, where they click, and how far into a video they stop watching.

It also lets you include calls to action directly in your videos, and even require them to sign up for your email list before watching. You can also customize your autoplay settings load settings, captions, and share options, and make it easy for users to skip to certain points in the video by adding chapters. CSS holds the style requirements for your page.

Generally, your website accesses this information in one of two ways: In an external file, which loads before your page renders, or inline, meaning it is in the HTML document itself. If you have more than one external CSS file, each one adds to your page load time. Fortunately, this is a simple process, and one that can usually be accomplished with nothing more than copy and paste.

Having just recommended that you use only one CSS stylesheet and no inline CSS, there is one caveat you need to consider. You can improve user experience by having your above the fold top of the page section load faster — even if the rest of the page takes a few seconds to load. This is called lazy loading and is particularly helpful for pages with lots of content below the fold. With lazy loading, it can load the content within view first, then load all of those photos after.

And if you run your site on WordPress, enabling it is as easy as installing a plugin. All you need to do is install and activate it Then, the plugin will automatically detect when an image is visible for a user, and load it. There are no settings or customization options to mess with — which, depending on your preferences, could either be a good thing or a bad one.

First, you can determine which content on your site you want to lazy load. This can include content, thumbnails, gravatars, images, and iframes. This gives you more control over the speed and function of how your page loads. If you already use WP Rocket, you can also use the plugin to enable lazy loading. You can also use snippets of code to disable lazy loading for specific types of pages, like your home page or blog page.

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When images appear all at once, they can provide a jarring experience for visitors. You can make them appear more gradually by adding a snippet to your CSS file. You can use them to add custom functionality, clean up your code, improve user experience, and more. They also eliminate the need to mess with a lot of code, which makes for an extremely user-friendly experience when working on your site. This makes it easy to continue adding and installing plugins, without considering the potential downside.

They can slow your site, create security issues, and even cause crashes and other technical difficulties. Any that are outdated, inefficient, or incorrectly configured can have a negative impact on your site speed. Deactivating and deleting any that are unnecessary can both improve your overall speed and make maintenance easier in the long run. There are a few different ways you can evaluate the plugins on your site and weed out any that slow your site speed. This can be a tedious process if you have a lot of plugins, but will show you the difference each one makes.

First, run a speed test with all of your plugins enabled. You can do this with tools like GTmetrix, Pingdom, or any other site speed tool you prefer. Make a note of your page load times after each test, and which plugins you deactivated to achieve faster speeds. This will take a few minutes, then show you a report with a detailed breakdown of how each plugin on your site is performing. The plugin load time at the top of the report tells you the cumulative load time for all of the plugins on your site, as well as the percentage of your total load time they make up.

You can also see a detailed timeline with information about every plugin, your theme, and the core for each page. This will help you identify exactly what the issue is on slow-loading pages. Finally, you can keep a history of your performance scans directly in the plugin. You'll still be able to use them when the drive is connected, but they won't take up space on your PC. Get more info about freeing drive space in Windows Windows 10 includes many visual effects, such as animations and shadow effects.

These look great, but they can also use additional system resources and can slow down your PC. Your PC settings let you choose where files will be saved by default. You can save files on your PC or to OneDrive by default and sync files between the two locations. This lets you get to your files from any device that can connect to the internet, and it helps make sure your files are backed up in case your PC is ever damaged or lost.

You can pause OneDrive syncing temporarily and see if it helps improve your PC performance. This can help improve PC performance if you reduce the number of files that are synced to your PC. When you turn on your PC, some programs start automatically and run in the background. Many programs are designed to start automatically when Windows does. To try to find out the name of the program, point to the icon with your mouse pointer.

Notification area with mouse pointing to show hidden icons. Even after you check the notification area, you might still miss some programs that run automatically at startup. Other symptoms include unexpected pop-up messages, programs that unexpectedly start automatically, or the sound of your hard disk constantly working. However, even if you take precautions, your PC can still become infected. Restoring your PC undoes recent changes that might be causing problems.

Skip to main content. Select Product Version. All Products. Show all. Make sure you have the latest updates for Windows and device drivers One the best ways to get the most out of your PC is to make sure you have the latest version of Windows 10 installed. D o one of the following: If the status says "You're up to date," go to the next tip. If the status says "Updates are available," select Install now. Select the updates you want to install, then select Install. Restart your PC and see if it seems to run better. If your PC still runs slowly, continue to the next tip.

Restart your PC and open only the apps you need Having many apps, programs, web browsers, and so on open at once can slow down your PC.

Boost your computer’s performance

PC still running slowly? Continue to the next tip. Select the ReadyBoost tab, then select Use this device. Windows determines if the device can use ReadyBoost. This file shows how much space is reserved for ReadyBoost. Make sure the system is managing the page file size The paging file is an area on your hard disk that Windows uses like memory. To make sure automatic page file management is turned on In the search box on the taskbar, type advanced system , and then select View advanced system settings , which has Control panel listed underneath it. Make sure the Automatically manage paging file size for all drives check box is selected.