20 Tips To Optimize Your Internet Speed and Your Web Browser
A computer in bad shape or a bad Internet connection can have disastrous consequences in the web browsing speed. This article will help you fix the most common problems to boost the performance of your computer, your Internet connection and your web browser.
Malware infections. It’s highly recommended to have a firewall and an antivirus installed. Keep them updated and scan your computer for infections periodically.
Other programs using the Internet connection. You should close all P2P programs to prevent the connection from saturation.
Other users using the same Internet connection. If more people is using the same Internet connection it’s possible that they are saturating it. In that case, you can only ask them to use it moderately. If you use Wi-Fi make sure you configure your router to use the most secure encryption and change its password frequently.
Overheated computer. Some computers slow down automatically to prevent damages if the CPU temperature rises too much.
It’s recommended to clean the computer’s interior and to verify that there’s a good air flow without obstacles. Clean all the dust from the heat sinks and fans. In some cases, it’s recommended to use a bigger heat sink and fan for the CPU.
Excessive CPU or RAM usage. If there are too many programs running or they need too much RAM memory, you will notice that the whole system becomes sluggish. You should close or uninstall all unnecessary programs, services or desktop gadgets. As a last resort you can also install more RAM memory or upgrade your CPU.
Too many open web browser tabs. If you open an excessive number of web browser tabs the operating system performance could be affected.
An example of a cell phone user agent could be this one :
Mozilla/5.0 (Linux; Android 6.0.1; SM-G920V Build/MMB29K) AppleWebKit/537.36 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/52.0.2743.98 Mobile Safari/537.36
Web pages hosted in slow or distant servers. The only you can do in this case is to search for a similar web page hosted in a faster server, preferably in a closer country or continent.
Web browser cache cleared frequently. The cache is used to prevent the web browser from downloading all the elements of a web page again, thus accelerating the web browsing experience. Every time you clear he cache, you force the web browser to download all the elements of a web page.
Slow DNS. There are many alternative DNS servers you can use in case the ones from your ISP don’t work properly. Some of those servers have very interesting features like : Total respect for users’ privacy, lack of censorship, ad filtering...
Some recommended DNS servers can be found here :
Hardware failure or fragmentation problems in the hard drive. In conventional HDD drives the performance can be poor if the files are fragmented or there are hardware problems. It’s recommended to defragment the hard drive and check for errors every few months. The best solution is to use SSD drives because that kind of hard drives don’t need to be defragmented and they are much faster than HDD drives.
To defragment the drive or check its status you have to follow these steps :
- Click on the “Start menu”.
- Select the “File explorer”.
- Right-click on the “Local disk” and select “Properties”.
- Go to the “Tools” tab and you’ll find several buttons to check or defragment the disk. Some Windows versions call it “Optimise now”.
Hard drive is full. Windows slows down a lot whenever the hard drive is very close to be totally full. In the case of SSD drives this phenomenon occurs much sooner than other kind of hard disks. Uninstall all unused programs and move all your documents, photos and videos to another hard drive.
Operating system corruption. In this case you can try to fix the system files with the “sfc /scannow” command as explained by Microsoft. You can also try to repair the registry using CCleaner but the results aren’t always satisfactory. The best solution is to reinstall Windows after backing up all the documents.
Power saver plan in Windows throttles the CPU. Some power saving plans in Windows throttle the CPU and can cause performance problems. If you don’t care about battery life, you can select the “High performance” plan in the “Power options” section of the Windows control panel.
Low power Wi-Fi signal. If there’s excessive distance or too many obstacles between the router and the computer, the Internet connection will seem much slower. To fix this problem you can place the router in a more central location or use Wi-Fi repeaters.
Wi-Fi interference. If there are other Wi-Fi routers nearby, maybe some of them are using the same frequency as yours and that generates some serious performance drops. In that case, configure your router to use an unused channel. If the 2.4GHz band is too crowed then use the 5GHz band because it’s usually unused. It’s also possible that some household electronics like microwave ovens, cordless phones, baby monitors or wireless speakers are causing the interference.
ADSL/VDSL synchronization issues. If you use a ADSL or VDSL service you might have connection stability problems caused by the line distance from the telephone exchange, cable characteristics or interference. You can try to fix it by improving the cable quality in your home, upgrading the firmware of your router or using a more reliable Internet connection with another service provider.
ISP overselling bandwidth. Internet service providers don’t always have an infrastructure big enough to satisfy the needs of all of their clients at the same time and in those cases you notice how the Internet speed degrades in peak hours. The only solution for this is to use a different ISP.
USB modem or cell phone with bad network coverage. If you use a USB modem or a cell phone as Wi-Fi hot spot to connect to the Internet, make sure they are located in a place with good network coverage.
Proxy or VPN performance issues. These services allow you to browse the Internet anonymously and without censorship but sometimes they degrade your Internet performance and stability. To improve your Internet experience switch to a different proxy or VPN server, or disable them completely.