Computer recommendations | Fix a slow/glitchy computer (Windows)

Computer recommendations

Incoming students often wonder what type of computer will best serve them at university. If you are an incoming student purchasing a laptop, keep in mind that four years is a long time in technology terms. You are best off to buy the best mid-range new laptop you can find. For most students in the Faculty of Science, we recommend using a Windows laptop. We do not recommend solely using a phone, tablet or Chromebook. In consideration of students who have pre-existing devices, we have provided recommended specifications for both Windows and Apple laptops below.

Windows laptops (recommended)

Operating system Windows 11 (Pro, Education, or Enterprise)
  • Intel Core i7 (no more than two years old)
  • AMD Ryzen 7000 series or later generations
Memory 16 GB or more
Hard drive 1TB or larger SSD

Apple laptops (may not run some software)

Operating system MacOS latest version
Processor Apple M1 or M2 processor

16 GB or more

Hard drive

1TB or larger SSD

Fix a slow/glitchy computer (Windows)

Here are some steps you can try to fix a slow/glitchy computer. If these do not resolve the issue, please reach out to the Science Computing Helpdesk for assistance.

  1. Run disk cleanup
    • Open the "Disk Cleanup" app. You can find this by typing "disk cleanup" into the search bar in the start menu.
    • Click "Clean up system files"
    • Check "Temporary Internet Files", "Temporary Files", and "Windows Update Cleanup". Uncheck "Thumbnails".
    • Click "OK"
  2. Check for Windows updates
    • This can be found in your Settings app under "Windows Update"
    • Download and install any new updates
  3. Check for driver updates
    • If you are using a university computer, you can check for updates in the Dell Command Update app
    • Otherwise, how to check for driver updates will depend on the manufacturer of your computer
  4. Uninstall any unwanted programs
    • You can find a list of the programs on your computer in your Settings app under "Apps"
    • Click on "Installed apps"
    • If you see an app that you don't use or don't want, click the three dots to the right of the app
    • Click "Uninstall"
  5. Disable any non-Windows antivirus, and run a full scan using Windows Defender
    • To run a full scan, open the "Windows security" app
    • Click "Virus & threat protection" on the sidebar
    • Underneath the "Quick scan" button, click "Scan options"
    • Check "Full scan" and click "Scan now"
  6. Repair corrupted windows system files
    • Run the Command Prompt app as an administrator. You can do this by searching for "command prompt" in the start menu, right clicking on the command prompt icon, and clicking "Run as administrator."
    • Type "sfc /scannow" and press the Enter key
    • If you get the message "Windows Resource Protection found corrupt files but was unable to fix some them," restart your PC in Safe Mode and repeat the prior 2 steps. To enter Safe Mode, go to Settings, click "System", "Recovery", and finally under "Advanced Startup", click the "Restart Now" button.
    • If all the corrupted files are still not repaired, type the following command into command prompt: "DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth". Click the Enter key. Restart the computer and repeat the first 2 steps