A ‘Microsoft Store’ App Fix, Tips to Help Speed Up Older Windows 10 Computers

John Vrooman | February 2019

I recently encountered a situation where I was unable to install an app that I wanted to get through the Microsoft Store app that’s installed on my computer. So, I Googled my problem and quickly found a solution that worked for me. The solution was found in a blog post titled “How to Reset the Microsoft Store App in Windows 10” that’s available at the winaero.com website. Fortunately, the fix was a quick and easy one! The following link will lead you to the solution that worked for me, and that may work for you should you ever encounter problems while using the Windows 10 Microsoft Store app…www.tinyurl.com/y5l6wcz3

Tips to Help Speed Up Older Windows Computers

Are you using a Windows computer that is more than a couple of years old? If so, does it have a traditional (spinning) hard drive? If you answered “yes” to these questions, there’s a good chance that you’ve noticed that your computer is starting up and operating slower than it was back when it was a newer computer. Unfortunately, if you don’t regularly maintain and optimize your computer’s hard drive and manage your software programs, your computer’s performance will likely degrade steadily over time…and that’s normal. In contrast, if you do regularly clean and optimize your computer’s hard disk, and better manage your installed software programs, you can keep your computer running at a high-performance level for a longer period of time. With the above in mind, let’s now clean and optimize your computer to see if we can improve its overall performance. I’m confident that we can!

The first thing to do is to backup your computer so that if something “really bad” happens, you’ll at least have a backup of your stuff. You’ve been warned! If you need help with this step, simply Google “How to back-up your computer” and you’ll come across lots of articles and videos that can help you with this step.

Next: Create a “restore point.” Doing this step is optional but it’s recommended because if something “not so bad” happens while working on your computer, you’ll likely be able to get your computer back up and running again quickly and easily. If you need help with this step, you can refer to an article titled “How to use System Restore on Windows 10” that’s available at the windowscentral.com website. Here’s a courtesy link to the article… www.tinyurl.com/yc4er5lk

Note: From this point on, I would encourage you to consider creating a new restore point before starting each new step (so that if something doesn’t go well, you’ll be able to restore your computer back to a point just before where the problem arose). Also, after completing each step, I would encourage you to also restart your computer. Why? Because when you restart your computer, it will be able to complete some steps that it might not have been able to complete while it was running. Additionally, by restarting your computer you’ll also be able to confirm that it’s able to boot up and run properly after each step.

Next: Check to see if your computer is running the latest version of the Windows 10 operating system by running “Windows Update.” Here’s a link that will lead you to a Microsoft.com support web page that will help you to quickly find Windows Update on your computer… www.tinyurl.com/y7yg8q5s

When you’re done running Windows Update, I recommend that you restart your computer and then repeat this same Windows Update step a few times until Windows Update reports that your computer is up to date. Issue: Some updates appear only after older updates have been installed.

Next: I recommend uninstalling software programs that you never or no longer use. Here’s a link that will lead you to a Microsoft.com support web page that will help you to identify the programs that are currently installed on your computer… www.tinyurl.com/y9kpgq3g

Alternatively, here’s a link to a free version of an uninstaller utility that I use (and recommend) that’s called “IOBit Uninstaller”… www.tinyurl.com/y42rw8bd

Next: Turn off as many apps that are “running in the background” as you can. If you visit the windowscentral.com website and review an article titled “How to stop apps from running in the background on Windows 10,” you’ll be coached through the process of accomplishing this step. It’s easy! To get started, visit www.tinyurl.com/y7ecb9ag

Next: Over time, it’s common for computer users to install additional software programs. Unfortunately, during the installation process, many of these programs configure themselves to automatically start when your computer boots up. If you reduce the number of programs that automatically start up when you turn on your computer, your computer will be able to boot up faster. To help you accomplish this step, please review the windowscentral.com article titled “How to stop Windows 10 apps from automatically launching at startup.” You can get to it by visiting… www.tinyurl.com/y79tngrg

Next: If your computer’s desktop is cluttered with numerous icons, please review the makeuseof.com article titled “How to Clean Up Your Windows Desktop Once and for All.” When you’re done reading the article, I suggest that you also review the “Comments” section as additional tips can be found there. Here’s a link to the article… www.tinyurl.com/y4rxyfa8

Next: Review and perform the tips that are highlighted in a computerworld.com article that’s titled “Windows 10 quick tips: 12 ways to speed up your PC”. Here’s a link to help you get started… www.tinyurl.com/y4k5xq64

Next: Clean up and optimize your computer. To accomplish this, I suggest you download and install “CCleaner” by Piriform. I recommend that you download the “Professional” version of the product that offers an initial free trial period. After the free trial period, you can choose to buy it, uninstall it, or continue to use it in the free (not professional) version of the product. Once you have the product installed, run the Cleaner and then the Registry cleaner. Here’s a link to the products download page… www.tinyurl.com/y826cj8x

Next: If you use Google’s Chrome Browser, you’ll likely be able to speed things up even more if you review and implement a lot of the tips that are offered throughout a problogbooster.com article that’s titled “28 tips [to] Make Chrome Faster.” Here’s a link to the article… www.tinyurl.com/y8cbv99h

Next: Defragment of  your hard drive. To accomplish this task, I recommend you use Auslogics “Disk Defrag Free” product. It’s better than Windows 10’s built-in defragmentation utility. You can learn more about the product and download it from the following web page… www.tinyurl.com/ybp5leo3

Warning: The process of defragmenting your hard drive can sometimes take a long time (hours), so I suggest doing this step at a time when you’re not going to need to use your computer.

Whew! If you decide to work your way through the above steps, I’m confident that you’ll notice an improvement in your computer’s boot up speed as well as its overall system performance. Generally speaking, the older and less maintained a computer system was, prior to working through the above steps, the greater the improvement will be after completing them.

I wish you luck while you work through the above steps and I hope that when you’re done, you’ll be satisfied with the results.

If you have comments, suggestions, tips, questions or just want to say “Hi”, you are invited to contact me at john@johnvrooman.com. I always enjoy hearing from you!

John Vrooman
John Vrooman is an experienced Realtor who enjoys staying on top of real estate, technology, gadgets, marketing, new media and small business trends/developments. John gathers information from a diverse range of resources and enjoys sharing tips, thoughts, and discoveries with others – using a “something for everyone” approach. He has been authoring this column since August 2000 and is an Associate Broker with Better Homes & Gardens Rand Realty's White Plains office.