Can software really speed up your computer?

The fact is, if you've been surfing the Internet, and have come across ads for applications that promise to speed up your computer, stop it from hanging, and get rid of malware – they are most likely a scam. In fact, the majority of these programs are actually malware themselves, and the ones that aren't are usually still pretty useless. They may perform a task that your operating system already does on its own, while others may be used to track your internet usage. In the end, even if they were free (and they aren't), you wouldn't want these programs. You will notice that the majority of these ads will appeal to you in the same way – firstly they will commiserate with you on the issue of a slow running computer that has been bogged down with spyware and other issues, and then they will promise a fix. Most likely they will have a few people who'll tell you how much better their computer ran after installing the product. Can software really speed up your computer or is it all a scam? Once they've convinced you to download a free trial of the program, phase two is to try and make you believe your computer is overrun with viruses, but don't be misled – a brand new computer that is just a few weeks old will likely show a thousand or more issues when these programs are run on them. The way they pad the number of issues is by detecting things that are common, but not really hurting your computer's performance. For example, you may have hundreds of tracking cookies due to normal internet usage, and these may all show up as “issues”. They can also detect fragmented computer files, and while these slow down your computer a little, the operating system can perform defragmentation itself – fragments do so little they should be listed as one problem, not hundreds. Now you get with the real sales pitch – all of the problems were detected for free, but if you want to fix the hundreds of things wrong with your computer, you will have to fork over £40 or so for the full program. Don't give them your money!

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