How to prevent a Windows computer from crashing

How to prevent a Windows computer from crashing
How to prevent a Windows computer from crashing

If Windows keeps crashing, it could be a software issue or a more general performance issue. Regular performance testing helps you prevent the computer from crashing and when it does, you can often fix it by taking a bit of pressure off the processor and performing full-scale diagnostic testing. You can increase the speed of your computer both in the short term and in the long term so that Windows can run smoothly.


Part 1 of 3: Perform full-scale diagnostics and reinstalls

Stop a Windows Computer from Freezing Step 11

Step 1. Defragment the hard drive

By using this solution, you reorganize the data and your computer will have less trouble finding it when you ask for it, reducing the risk of it crashing. To access this tool, simply click on Programs> Accessories> System Tools> Defragment Disk.

  • Each action you do on the computer physically moves the data away from each other on the hard drive, making it more time for the computer to find it. Defragmentation corrects this problem and it can take anywhere from ten minutes to several hours depending on the size of your disk.
  • See How to Defragment a Disk on a Windows Computer for more information.
Stop a Windows Computer from Freezing Step 12

Step 2. Format the drive and reinstall Windows

Sometimes uninstalling and reinstalling applications can help you make the computer run faster and the same is true for Windows. Formatting the drive erases all files on the primary drive to prepare it to reinstall Windows from the installation disc.

  • Make sure to back up your data first! Formatting will erase everything on the hard drive.
  • On Windows 8 and later, you can use the command Refresh so that Windows reinstalls itself, without a startup disk and without erasing your data.
  • Take a look at How to Reinstall Windows 7 and How to Reinstall Windows XP for more information.
Stop a Windows Computer from Freezing Step 13

Step 3. Go back to a previous operating system

If your computer has only the minimum of requirements to run your current operating system, you may improve its performance by downgrading to an older system. See how to downgrade Windows 8 to Windows 7 for more information on this operation.

Part 2 of 3: use quick little tricks to improve speed

Stop a Windows Computer from Freezing Step 1

Step 1. Update the applications

Make sure your programs (including Windows) are up to date. In general, the newer versions are also the ones that work the best.

  • Check and install Windows updates by clicking Windows Updates> Check for Updates> Install Updates.
  • Many programs will notify you of updates, but you can also do a manual search for the most recent version or you can take a look at the update tools for that program to ask it to. check regularly for the presence of these.
Stop a Windows Computer from Freezing Step 2

Step 2. Close unnecessary applications

Programs that you leave running in the background take up a lot of RAM, which slows down the computer. To find out which programs are running at any time, take a look at the icons along the application panel or open the task manager.

Stop a Windows Computer from Freezing Step 3

Step 3. Limit Startup Programs

Access the configuration tool on startup by typing msconfig.exe in the search box and launching the program. Click on Start-up to access the software that starts automatically at startup.

Otherwise, Microsoft also offers a downloadable program called "Autorun" which gives you this kind of access as well as other options for choosing which programs to launch automatically when you start your computer

Stop a Windows Computer from Freezing Step 6

Step 4. Turn off visual effects

Windows offers about twenty different visual effects (such as shadow effects or animations when menus open and close) that can slow down your system. You can turn these effects on or off, or let Windows choose the optimal settings depending on your computer's performance (this is recommended).

  • Access the special effects menu by clicking on Control Panel> Performance Information and Tools> Adjust Visual Effects.
Stop a Windows Computer from Freezing Step 4

Step 5. Uninstall unnecessary applications

To uninstall a program, enter the control panel and click on Add / Remove Programs before selecting the program of your choice and clicking on Modify Delete.

For more information on how to do this, you can check out How to Remove Unwanted Software from Your Computer

Stop a Windows Computer from Freezing Step 5

Step 6. Delete unnecessary files

The built-in hard drive cleanup tool scans for unnecessary files to prevent hard drive mess and improve performance.

  • Access this tool by clicking on Settings> Control Panel> Administrative Tools.
  • Remember to empty the recycle bin regularly. Files continue to pile up on it if you do not empty it regularly, which can decrease the performance of the computer.

Part 3 of 3: take care of the computer regularly

Stop a Windows Computer from Freezing Step 7

Step 1. Restart it regularly

This action frees up the computer's memory and closes any programs that may be running in the background. You should do this every week.

Stop a Windows Computer from Freezing Step 8

Step 2. Scan with the antivirus

A regular scan can identify many problems that could slow down the performance of your machine. Use the Windows built-in antivirus (Defender) or choose one from the many free options online.

Stop a Windows Computer from Freezing Step 9

Step 3. Clean the registry

This step is rather reserved for advanced users, as it involves significant changes in the system settings, which is why you need to be careful. Go to the registry editor (regedit) and don't forget to make a copy of it before you start. From the editor, you can remove old apps, eliminate unwanted programs on startup, and adjust your administrator account settings. Take a look at How to Clean Windows Registry Manually to find out how.

While there are many software programs that also allow you to clean the registry, it's usually best to take the time to do it yourself for best performance results

Stop a Windows Computer from Freezing Step 10

Step 4. Open the tower and clean the computer

Dust can slow down many computers. For this method, you will need to unscrew the plate on the side of the computer and use a compressed air tool to clean off the dust. Be careful during this step, as the inside of the computer is very delicate.

  • Find out how to properly maintain and clean a PC and follow the instructions.
  • Pay particular attention to the dust found on radiators and fans.


  • Launch the Windows Cleanup Tool. In recent versions of the operating system, there is a tool that can eliminate unused shortcuts on the desktop and improve the performance of the computer.
  • Uninstall all software from the control panel. Don't just delete the shortcut.
  • Use the scheduled cleaning wizard. This program helps you remember to clean the hard drive, defragment it, and do other maintenance.


  • Use care when handling computer parts, as they can break easily.
  • Watch out for viruses that might accompany your online downloads. Scan compressed folders before extracting them, executable files, and anything else you think is questionable.

Popular by topic