Will Windows 11 speed up my computer?
Fixed: Windows 11 Made My Computer Slow – 6 Solutions Included
“Windows 11 made my computer slow” is a common issue you see on the forums. This article gives you several ways to help you improve the performance of your Windows 11 PC. Please read on to learn the detailed steps.
By Yuka / Last update November 2, 2022
User Case: New Updates of Windows 11 Made My Computer Slow
“I have a desktop computer and this is the second time that the computer has become very slow after an update to Windows 11. The first time was in December and now the second time is after an update a week ago. My last update was the Feb 18, 2022 update (KB4023057) and the one before that was the Feb 12, 2022 update (KB5010386). My hard drive is an SSD and shows 100% usage for the first 5 minutes after booting. Are there any updates or fixes available to fix this issue?
Windows 11 Performance Fix
Starting October 5, 2021, the free upgrade for Windows 11 began rolling out to the public who have an eligible Windows 10 PC. All Windows 10 computers that meet the minimum system requirements for Windows 11 are eligible for the free upgrade.
While Windows 11 brings a new UI design and some improved features, many users are still experiencing performance issues. Don’t worry if Windows 11 on your PC is making your computer slow. After reading this article, you should be able to easily tune your Windows PC for better performance!
Solution 1. Troubleshooting Windows 11 Performance
Before attempting more complex actions, run the Microsoft Support Diagnostic Tool to find and resolve Windows 11 performance issues.
- Press Windows + R to open the Run dialogue. Copy and paste the following command, then press Enter to open the System Maintenance window.
- %systemroot%system32msdt.exe -id MaintenanceDiagnostic
- Click Next and follow the on-screen instructions to complete the remaining steps.
When this tool finishes troubleshooting, it will locate what is slowing down your Windows 11 PC and either fix the problem automatically or provide you with a way to resolve it. If this tool does not find any problems, or if your computer is still running slowly, try the next fix.
Solution 2. Changing the Power Plan
A power plan is a set of hardware and system settings (such as display brightness, sleep, etc.) that are used to manage your computer’s consumption and the way it saves power. By default, most PCs use a balanced power plan. You can fix the problem that Windows 11 made your computer slow by following these steps to change the power settings on your PC.
- Press Windows + R to open the Run dialogue. Type powercfg.cpl and press Enter to open the Power Options window in the Control Panel.
- If the High Performance power plan option is available, switch your power plan to High Performance. If the High Performance option is not available on your PC, you can click Change plan settings next to the current power plan.
- Then click Change advanced power settings.
- Expand Processor power management and set both the Minimum processor state and Maximum processor state to 100%.
- Click OK to save and apply the changes.
Solution 3. Disable Transparency Effects
These visual effects in Windows 11 do make the new operating system look modern and elegant. However, it also puts a big burden on older computers and may even cause them to become sluggish. You can turn off transparency and animation effects by following these steps.
- Press the Windows logo key and search for visual effects. Select Visual effects from the list of search results.
- Turn off the toggle button next to the Transparency effects and the Animation effects.
Solution 4. Disable Startup Programs
If you have too many programs loading at startup, you may experience slow startup of Windows 11 and may even slow down your system. We recommend that you try to reduce the number of startup programs and add only the important ones.
- Press the Ctrl + Shift + Esc keys together and open the Task Manager.
- Tap the Startup tab, right-click the application or service you want to disable, and select Disable.
For apps from the Microsoft Store, you can also set the background app permissions to Never to prevent the app from running in the background. Here’s how to do this.
- Right-click the Start button (Windows icon) and select App and Features.
- Right-click on the vertical three dots next to the application and select Advanced options.
- In the Background apps permissions section, click the drop-down menu under Let this app run in background and select Never.
- Repeat the above steps for other applications that you do not want to consume system resources in the background.
Solution 5. Clear Temporary Files
Temporary files (temp files) are files that are created for temporary storage of information. It keeps the computer smooth and fast when the user tries to perform the same task again. Corrupted or old temp files on Windows 11 can make your computer slow. To remove temp files from your laptop or computer, do the following.
- On your keyboard, press the Windows + R at the same time to open the Run dialog box. Type %temp% and press Enter to open the Temp folder.
- Press Ctrl + A on your keyboard to select all the files in the Temp folder, then press Del to delete all of them.
- On your keyboard, press the Windows + I at the same time to open Windows Settings, then go to System ->Storage ->Temporary files.
- Check the box in front of the file type, select the file type you want to delete, and then click the Remove files button to delete the file you selected.
Solution 6. Defrag Your Hard Disk
When you use your hard drive, the storage space will be divided freely. When this happens, it will slow down the Windows 11 operating system installed on the hard drive because the system will take more time to find the information stored on the hard drive.
By defragmenting your hard drive, you can reorganize the data stored on it so that the relevant data pieces are arranged in a contiguous manner, which helps the drive find information faster. In short, defragmentation can improve your computer’s performance.
- On your keyboard, press the Windows logo key and type defrag. Select Defragment and Optimize Drives.
- Select the drive you want to defrag, then click the Optimise button.
Moving Windows 11 to An SSD to Improve Computer Performance
After you try the above methods, your computer will run faster. If you want to improve the performance of your computer, it is recommended to install Windows 11 on a solid-state drive (SSD). It is well known that installing a system on an SSD can greatly increase the system boot speed, reducing the time from minutes to a dozen seconds. It can also speed up the Windows system while it is running, making the whole system faster.
AOMEI Backupper can help you easily migrate your Windows 11 system to SSD and ensure you can boot successfully from the new hard disk. It is an all-in-one disk cloning software for Windows 7/8/10/11, including «Disk Clone», «System Clone» and «Partition Clone» to meet the needs of different users.
System Clone: Allows you to effortlessly clone your C: drive to an SSD. This is especially useful if you only want to migrate your system to the SSD and not all the data on the C drive.
Disk Clone: Allows you to clone the entire hard drive to the SSD. This is useful for migrating all data from the old HDD to the new SSD, thus improving computer performance.
Next, I will show you how to use this third-party software to move Windows 11 to SSD to avoid the problem of Windows 11 slowing down your computer’s performance.
- Install the SSD to Windows 11. If your SSD is new, you will need to initialize it in Disk Management.
- Download and install AOMEI Backupper on your computer.
- Launch this software, navigate to Clone tab on the left side. If you only need to move the operating system, select System Clone. If you want to clone the entire disk, click Disk Clone.
- The program is designed to automatically select the system partition and boot-related partition for you, you just need to select SSD as the new location and click Next to continue.
- Confirm the operation, check SSD Alignment to speed up SSD performance, and click Start Clone.
- After successful cloning, shut down the computer. Remove the source drive from the computer, install the SSD and reboot the computer. You may need to enter the BIOS/UEFI settings and make sure that the newly replaced disk is the first bootable device.
If your Windows 11 is slowing down your computer, you can try the 6 ways provided in this article to optimize your computer’s performance. If you have tried all of the above and your computer is still slow, it is recommended that you move Windows 11 to an SSD, which will give your computer a speed boost.
AOMEI Backupper is a reliable disk cloning software that helps you migrate OS to SSD without reinstalling Windows. It also enables you to clone an entire disk to another disk, including the system and data on it. You won’t experience any data loss or boot failure issues.
Windows 11 vs. Windows 10, Tested: Will the OS Upgrade Speed Up Your Current PC?
We benchmarked a recent Dell laptop under both versions of Windows to see the performance differences in everyday apps.
By Matthew Buzzi
Senior Analyst, Hardware
I’m one of the consumer PC experts at PCMag, with a particular love for PC gaming. I’ve played games on my computer for as long as I can remember, which eventually (as it does for many) led me to building and upgrading my own desktop. Through my years here, I’ve tested and reviewed many, many dozens of laptops and desktops, and I am always happy to recommend a PC for your needs and budget.
December 6, 2021
(Image: Bob Al-Greene/Molly Flores)
Windows 11 is here, though it remains an optional upgrade for anyone on existing desktops and laptops that are eligible for it. New PCs will increasingly begin shipping with Windows 11 pre-installed, so adoption rates will gradually rise in 2022 and beyond. If you’re tempted to try Windows 11 on a supported PC you own, or will purchase a new machine with Microsoft’s latest OS soon, you may be wondering if and how it will affect performance with the apps you use every day.
Fortunately, we’re here to help. Whether Windows 11 offers superior, reduced, or the same performance as Windows 10, we wanted to put some empirical data behind this speculation. To that end, we tested a laptop before and after upgrading to the new OS, running the same set of tests on Windows 10 and then Windows 11, to judge the impact of the upgrade.
Dell Inspiron 14 7415 2-in-1 (Photo: Molly Flores)
Of course, some of the efficiency improvements for Windows 11 that Microsoft sunk time and effort into don’t show up in pure performance tests like these. Microsoft claims improvements made to web browsing speed, smaller Windows Update files, and added security, but those don’t play straight into raw productivity power. Consider those aspects of Windows 11 the special user-friendly sauce on top of the base UI and any potential performance gains.
The Laptop We Used, and the Benchmark Tests
The laptop in question for this Windows 11 experiment is the Dell Inspiron 14 7415 2-in-1. This machine isn’t a productivity workhorse, but an everyday general-use laptop representative of the kind that the average user will log in to at home each day. We specifically chose it because it is an AMD Ryzen-based system, equipped with a Ryzen 7 5700U processor and 16GB of memory. Early on in the launch cycle for Windows 11, Microsoft warned about diminished performance with Ryzen processors on Windows 11, but it has since pushed an update meant to fix that issue. Based on the numbers here, it seems to have worked. (More on that in a bit.)
At $999.99 as tested, this Inspiron model not exactly a budget laptop, but it’s representative of a good, solid mainstream machine for discerning consumers.
Dell Inspiron 14 7415 2-in-1 (Photo: Molly Flores)
Our usual laptop-review testing explainer will tell you in depth which benchmark tests we run and how they stress a laptop, but a quick rundown should be helpful. PCMark 10, Geekbench, Cinebench, and our Photoshop plugin from workstation maker Puget Systems (Opens in a new window) are tests that replicate real workloads (synthetically in the case of the first two, or using the actual apps in the second two) and produce a proprietary score. PCMark 10 simulates a host of real-world office and productivity actions and programs (video calling, spreadsheet work, and the like), while Geekbench and Cinebench are CPU-crunching trials, with the latter simulating a CPU-based image render in Maxon’s software. The PugetBench plug-in runs Adobe Photoshop CC through a series of typical Photoshop actions (resizing images, applying filters, and so on).
All four of these tests generate proprietary performance numbers specific to that test, higher being better. These scores have no meaning in isolation, but they can be compared directly to one another within the same test-results set to show performance differences.
Our last test, Handbrake 1.4, meanwhile, is a test run of a real-world tool. In it, we encode a specific 4K video file (Opens in a new window) and time how long it takes. (The render times are the scores, and lower times are better.)
You can examine that methodology at the explainer link above, or jump right into the results below. Also check out our separate review of Windows 11, for many more details on the advantages and features Microsoft’s newest OS is supposed to bring.
The Results: Steady as She Goes
We ran the sample Inspiron laptop through our testing regimen in Windows 10 with the most current updates, then took up the Windows Update tool’s offer to push the system to Windows 11. Once that was done and the Windows 11 OS was fully updated to the latest pushes, we ran the full benchmark suite again.
The chart set below has this laptop’s results for those tests on Windows 10 and 11. (Hit the arrows or dropdown menu to see the results from the five different tests.) So without further ado.
There’s a clear takeaway here, and put simply, it’s that we didn’t see much performance difference between the two operating systems. There is not a ton of nuance or complexity to these tests or this laptop (for example, no software-based special high-performance modes, like you see with some gaming laptops or mobile workstations). The benchmark tests are straightforward and have been run on well-nigh 100 laptops in our labs this year, so we know them well. So you can mostly take the numbers at face value.
Here’s a summary of the differences presented as percentages.
The Windows 11-versus-10 differences may be small, indeed mostly within what we would consider margin of error. Indeed, anything under 2% we typically regard as possible run-to-run variance. But let’s take a closer look at the results anyway. The Windows 11 results mostly edge out the Windows 10 numbers, even if not by much. The PCMark 10, Geekbench, and Photoshop scores are all higher on Windows 11, to varying degrees. Some of these are slightly outside the normal, smaller margins of error that normally occur from one run to the next, so there’s likely something to the OS difference here. Consider it a minor win for Windows 11 performance.
The exception is Cinebench, which posted a higher score on Windows 10 by 200 points. None of these margins in either direction means a lot for practical real-world use, at the end of the day—none of the 200-point gap on Cinebench, the 132-point gap on PCMark 10, and especially not the 5-point difference on the Photoshop PugetBench measure will be noticeable in regular use. At most, it’s mildly noteworthy that the span of differences is so consistent (around 2% to 3%, in four of the five cases), even if they are practically the same. But as it stands, the edge goes to Windows 11.
Recommended by Our Editors
Also worth repeating: This is a Ryzen-based system, and based on early returns we’d have expected to see a major difference here, if we were to see one anywhere. On the Intel side, there’s a major factor we can’t confirm on laptops just yet. Intel’s newest chip generation, Alder Lake, delivers baked-in efficiencies that bring its performance to the next level. Chief among these is a system utility called Thread Director, a Windows 11-specific scheduler controlled by a new microcontroller on the CPU that helps direct processor traffic and power more efficiently while working through tasks. Microsoft has no plans to introduce Thread Director to Windows 10.
In our review of the powerful Intel Core i9-12900K Alder Lake flagship desktop CPU, we were impressed by the difference in this chip from past generations (not solely due to Thread Director, mind you), finally pulling Intel level with AMD’s top-end consumer Ryzen silicon on content creation tasks. (Lots more about that at the link.)
We look forward to being able to see Thread Director in action (and put it to the test) on Alder Lake-based laptops when they are available, but they haven’t been released yet, nor have Alder Lake mobile chips even been announced, though Intel has confirmed that they are indeed coming. It’s these type of everyday and productivity workflows that should benefit. Of course, Alder Lake mobile CPUs will presumably ship only on laptops with Windows 11 pre-installed, not 10, so the point may be moot.
So, Should You Upgrade?
Based on these results, there’s no reason to hold off on the upgrade to Windows 11 on a purely performance basis. There are plenty of other considerations around whether you want to update (for example, your opinion on the UI changes that 11 brings). But concern over a potential performance drop is not warranted based on these results, even with this Ryzen-based laptop.
There may be a bit more variation at top-end performance tiers, where any Windows 11 efficiencies have more chance to flex their muscles. Specialist media and productivity machines like that, though, are going to boast high-end hardware, anyway, much more dependent on which particular processor and other components they’re employing. However, these users may also be beholden to the specific version of Windows they’re allowed to use for work by their IT departments, or because of software version compatibility.
Our recommendation for those drawn to the new OS, and who don’t have any specialized needs tied to 10, is to go ahead and upgrade if you were hesitant about the performance aspect. You won’t gain much, if any, perceptible speed, but you’ll get access to the OS changes and conveniences that Windows 11 brings to the table. If you’re still unsure about the OS itself, however, even in light of these results, read our full review of Windows 11 and our rundown of its new features.
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