The Mouse Trap – Slow computer?

Janis Weber

If you are annoyed at the speed of your computer and how slow it is becoming, let me shed some light. The Task Manager is your friend for this problem. Think of Task Manager as a window into your PC’s health. The app gives you insight into what’s taxing the processor, how much memory something is taking up and even how much network data a program has used.

An easy way to open Task Manager is to right-click on the Taskbar and select Task Manager from the list of options. Task Manager’s default view doesn’t show a lot of information beyond which apps are currently running (handy if you know if you want to close one out), so after opening the app, click on More Details in the bottom left corner.

By default, the long list is broken down into Apps and Background Processes. It’s refreshed constantly, with the various columns constantly updating. My advice is to let Task Manager run for a few minutes and just watch it. Watch for apps that shoot up to the top of the list, then disappear a few seconds later. Look for processes that stay at the top of the list with high memory or CPU use. You can Google names to find out more about a process. To close an app or process that you feel may be partly responsible for slow performance, click on it and then End Task.

After watching your system running slowly with Task Manager open, you may have also noticed that your antivirus software is routinely near the top of the list. Antivirus software can slow down your system while it’s actively scanning your computer for malware and viruses. Instead of letting your antivirus program scan whenever it sees fit, schedule it to run at times when you’re not likely to be using your PC, such as overnight.

Browser Overload

Your web browser could be the culprit, especially if you’ve lost count of the number of windows and tabs you have open. Each window and tab takes up memory and processing power and over time that will begin to slow down your PC.


You can view a breakdown of extensions and tabs that could be to blame in Task Manager by clicking on the arrow next to your browser’s name. Alternatively, if you use Chrome, it has a built-in task manager of its own. Launch it by pressing Shift plus Escape while using Chrome or click on the menu button then More Tools and then Task Manager. If you find that your browser is often causing your PC to slow to a crawl, try a different browser or become more aware of how many tabs or windows you have open at a given time.

Some Solutions

Close running apps when you’re done. Some, like accounting apps, are speed hogs. Check your storage space. If your hard drive or SSD is running out of space or is getting old, it could be failing. Turn off your computer. Don’t just restart it, but completely power it off and walk away for a few minutes. This gives your computer a chance to clear out memory and start fresh the next time it’s turned on.

I Make House Calls (I am fully vaccinated and masked if requested)

I will come to your home or office and help you with almost any predicament including repairs, upgrades, and personal software tutoring. I can be your resident “Geek.” I have an endless amount of patience and knowledge with years of experience. Give me a text or call at 419-290-3570. FYI, I will be holding classes at The Sylvania Senior Center beginning in October. Check their website for details.

Definition of The Day

A banner ad is like television or radio, websites who can offer free content by generating revenue from advertising. While you may get tired of Web ads from time to time, most people would agree that seeing a few advertisements here and there is better than paying a usage fee for each website.


Janis Weber, B.A., owner of Ohio Computer Training & Support, is a professional computer adjunct instructor. E-mail any specific questions or comments to or contact her for assistance at 419-290-3570. Private tutoring and repairs are just a phone call, text, or email away. Check her out on the Sylvania Advantage website, titled Computer 101. Classes begin at the Sylvania Senior Center in October. Check its website for details.

Leave a Reply