Computers are a great work tool and lifestyle investment. But when it starts to perform poorly, it can be frustrating and worrisome. It’s hard to work or enjoy the internet without a smoothly functioning computer.
Although computers are very robust machines, they need maintenance to keep them operating at optimum. You can solve many issues related to PC health on your own through basic diagnostic testing. Learning how to run necessary diagnostic tests can save you time and money.
When to Run Diagnostics
Some common PC issues have common, easy causes and fixes. Should you experience problems like your computer frequently freezing, applications running unusually slow, the sound has stopped working, mouse or keyboard malfunctioning, and so on, you need to run a diagnostic. Knowing the problem can help you find a simple solution to get back to work or enjoy your computer. The following are some diagnostic tools that you can use.
Process Explorer is a tool that can display which applications are consuming your CPU. Experts use it because it can display the information in a tree structure that shows the top-level process and the child processes connected to that application. Programmers use it to ensure that their application processes don’t have memory leaks or CPU usage issues. Process Explorer also comes with the following diagnostics features:
- Real-Time CPU, Memory, I/O, and GPU charts
- Color coding to visualize the most active processes
- The ability to customize multiprocessor CPU load and process priority
- Detailed properties about processes such as memory, priority, handles, and more
CPU-Z scans your system for its internal hardware configuration. It’s useful for users who intend to upgrade their PC components and want to avoid incompatibility issues. Computer users who built their own PC can also use it to test the parts they have installed and see if they function well. It can verify the authenticity of the used PC components bought from resellers or second-hand dealers.
System Explorer is a tool that can give detailed insights into your overall system performance. It can run processes, provide a real-time charting and history of process activity. Additional features of System Explorer include:
- Tree structure breakdown of active processes
- The ability to run a file security check on active processes
- Information on the company that would have created the application and associated modules
- Real-time charting of CPU, RM, and I/O
- Display of all processes that are using the computer’s internet connection
WiFi Analyzer is a tool that allows you to analyze all the wireless networks in the vicinity. It shows the strength of the available WiFi signals. It also shows the details of the network you have connected to, such as the channel, frequency, bandwidth, etc. WiFi Analyzer lets you examine public WiFis before you use them.
Reliability Monitor comes free with Windows 10. Search for “reliability” in the Windows search bar, then click “view reliability history.” A report will immediately show up. The reliability graph is a visual display of when and where an error occurred in your Windows system. You can use the Reliability Monitor in the following manner:
- You can click on any red X to view information about the error, and it’ll display the data in the bottom panel
- Clicking on any yellow “!” will display more information about the warning
- More detailed information is available under “view technical details”
Not all errors and warnings should be of concern; Windows has random errors most of the time. But recurring critical errors should be taken note of because they can negatively affect your system performance.
When to Get Professional Help
Anyone can use the above diagnostic tools, but interpreting the results can get tricky. Even after you have diagnosed the problem, you may find that the solution is complicated. When issues are persistent even after running diagnostics or if you can’t find a self-diagnostic process, you will want to call in professional help.
Professionals will be better able to diagnose and solve more complicated issues related to your PC. Online or on-site desktop repair services can provide the expertise you need to solve the more complicated problems. They also have more sophisticated analytics tools to find issues you may not have been aware of.
Maintain Peak Performance
Running your own diagnostics can help you keep your computer at its best. You can spot problems early by keeping a regular maintenance schedule. Should you encounter an issue that you cannot understand or fix, you can hire a professional.