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Fixing Momentary PC Freezing Problems

Everybody has experienced the gut-churning frustration that comes when your PC freezes on you. No matter the task, having your flow interrupted by a cranky PC is a pain in the neck!

Fortunately, there are plenty of ways you can improve your PC’s performance, and, hopefully, put a stop to those troublesome PC freezes.

Fixing PC Freezes Part I: Out With the Old

The first thing to do is remove any programs you don’t use, as these can put a major drag on system performance. To uninstall programs:

  • Click Start, then click Control Panel. (In Windows 8, press Windows Key + X and click Control Panel.)
  • For Windows XP, click Add or Remove Programs, and for Windows Vista, Windows 7 or Windows 8, click either Programs and Features or Uninstall a Program (the configuration of your control panel determines which one will display).
  • Browse through the list of programs that comes up, and when you find one that isn’t necessary, select it and click Uninstall, which appears above the list.

Different software has different procedures for uninstalling, but they are generally always reasonably simple, so just follow the options that come up. Sometimes the uninstall will automatically take you to a website that seeks to find out your reason for uninstalling. You are NOT required to take this survey for the uninstall to complete.
When uninstalling, be careful of uninstalling something simply because you don’t recognize it. Some critical Windows applications and functions appear on the uninstall list, so when it doubt, take the time to Google the listing to see if you need it or not.

My PC Freezes Momentarily
Once you click Uninstall, each application will guide you the rest of the way.

Windows 8 makes it easier than ever to uninstall, as you can simply select the “Uninstall Below” option when the particular program is highlighted on the Start Screen.

Fixing PC Freezes Part II: Update Your Drivers

Once you’ve slimmed down your application list, the next step is to ensure that your drivers are all up to date. The easiest way to accomplish this is to use software such as Driver Reviver, which will automatically scan your system’s hardware to determine if you have the latest drivers. This, in an of itself, can resolve a great many issues, as problems often come from hardware that isn’t interfacing with the system correctly.

Fixing PC Freezes Part III: Anti-Virus & Anti-Malware

The next step to reclaiming your computer’s functionality and eliminating PC freezes is to ensure you have up-to-date virus protection and are regularly running anti-malware scans. Microsoft Security Essentials is an excellent antivirus utility, and it is available for free. This is software is more or less automatic once you’ve installed it. It starts when Windows does, updates itself, and constantly monitors your system for virus activity (and uses fewer system resources than most other anti-virus utilities, improving your system performance).

Malware-bytes Anti-Malware, also free, is a favored anti-malware solution. This is a scanner you would run periodically (at least once per week), if the PC freezes (once it was operational again), or just whenever you notice the system acting strangely. It actively searches your system for malware and allows you to remove whatever it finds. Using this in conjunction with anti-virus will go a long way to keeping your computer functioning optimally.

How do I Reduce Overheating Problems in My PC?
Malwarebytes is capable remove the vast majority of malware that may infect your PC, from Trojan Horses to simple Registry exploits.

Fixing PC Freezes Part IV: Go Back in Time

If all else fails, an option of last resort to fix PC freezes is to restore the system using a restore point. To accomplish this:

  1. Click Start
  2. Click Accessories
  3. Click System Tools, and click System Restore
  4. Choose the date you want to restore to. Ideally, you want to select the most recent working configuration, but don’t be afraid to go way back in order to eliminate any issues
    Click Confirm Restore Point Selection and click Next

Using this guide, you will be able to restore and maintain your computer’s performance through the vast majority of circumstances, without having to shell out big bucks for a repair service.

Steve Horton

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