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ALSO READ: HOW TO Increase Internet Speed in 4 Steps
1. Make Sure Your Connection is Secure
When you set up your home network, you should have taken steps to secure your connection. This means setting passwords that only you have access to, as well as making sure there is some type of encryption in place to block intruders. If you have not taken the proper steps to secure your internet connection, it can be very easy for neighbors to take advantage of your signal. “Sharing” your connection with others can cause your internet to run very slowly, since you are not using it at full strength. Take the necessary precautions and secure your connection if you have not done so already.
2. Check for Programs Running in the Background
Many programs, such as antivirus and system update programs, are designed to run automatically every so often. Although this is a very helpful feature since it can be hard to remember to run these programs regularly, it can also cause your internet speed to suffer. This is because these programs use a certain percentage of your computer’s bandwidth, which in turn slows down the other programs that are being used. Try turning off the automatic-run feature on any programs that use it and see if your internet speeds up. If so, make it a point to manually run these programs on a regular basis.
3. Remove Temporary Internet Files, Cookies, and Browsing History
Any computer that is connected to the internet will quickly accumulate temporary internet files, tracking cookies, and a browsing history. These unnecessary items are created automatically every time you visit a webpage. Every so often you should delete these things to keep them from affecting your internet speed. All you have to do is find the “Internet Options” menu, and from there click to delete them.
4. Reposition Your Router
If you are using a wireless connection, the position of your router can affect your internet speed. You should always try to set up your router in a centrally located area in your home to maximize the signal to your computer and other wireless devices. Also, try to avoid placing it near an outside wall, since some of your signal may be sent outside. If you are still having trouble, make sure there are no heavy bookcases or other furniture that could interfere with the wireless signal.
5. Install a Quality Antivirus Program
Anything on your computer that should not be there can cause it to suffer and run slowly. This goes for viruses, spyware, and malware, all of which can attack your key programs and make them extremely sluggish. All of these undesired things run rampant on the internet, so it is definitely in your best interests to install a high-quality program that will guard your PC from all of these threats. Once you have the program installed, make sure to run a scan on a regular basis to find and remove any potential risks.
6. Avoid P2P Programs
Any programs that allow you to share files with other individuals are especially risky. This is because you are downloading files (music, video, etc.) from sources that are unknown, which means the files could be infected with just about anything. It is best to avoid these types of programs at all costs, even if you have antivirus software in place. These files can also add up quickly, which decreases internet speed and computer memory. Additionally, most of these P2P programs run constantly, which causes speed to suffer.
7. Use External Storage
Do you have an extensive collection of files, such as music, photos, documents, or videos? Keeping too many files stored on your computer’s hard drive can cause the internet and other programs to run slower than they should. This is because the files and programs are competing for disk space. It is a good idea to purchase an external hard drive for your files to keep your computer’s speed from taking a hit.
These tips should make it easy for you to keep your internet running quickly and smoothly. The main thing to remember is to always be cautious and alert of what you or others are doing online. Preventing unnecessary things from finding their way onto your computer is the number one way to keep your internet speed from suffering. If this does not work for you, you may need to consider contacting internet providers in your area to see if you can get faster, more reliable service.
Guest post from Karen Schweitzer. Karen writes about internet providers for Internetserviceproviders.org.