The question of whether or not antivirus solutions will affect a computer’s performance is a common one, and particularly important if you’re not running the latest hardware and therefore more concerned about the impact an always-on tool might have. But is it a concern worth having?
How Your Computer Is Impacted by Antivirus Software
The main reason antivirus might slow your computer down is because it doesn’t have enough memory. When an antivirus scanner is set up on your device, it is actually loaded into the memory of the PC every time it starts. This enables the antivirus to persistently defend your system from any threats. When software is loaded into the memory of a device, it actually partially consumes the memory. If the system is not provided with enough, then the overall performance of the PC can be affected.
What to Do if Your PC Is Slowed Down by Antivirus
At the moment, most PCs have enough memory to be able run an antivirus in the background without slowing down. However, if you do notice this is happening, there are a few actions you can take to speed it up:
• Clean your hard drive: any in-use hard drive will have wasted space. This is how unused apps, accidental downloads, or other unused files affect the system, occupying memory and draining the resources of your PC. A rapid cleaning of the hard drive may speed up the system’s ability to process other tasks, allowing room for antivirus.
• Change how often the scans are done: most antivirus software enables you to change when a scan should take place and how often. Having a scan done once every two or three days will keep your computer most safe against online threats, but if you’re having issues then consider increasing this amount to once a week.
• Check the system requirements: before installing the antivirus, check the system requirements from the provider. Ensure your PC meets these or find another antivirus with lower requirements.
• Ensure you only have one antivirus set up: if your system is loading and performing real-time defense from more than one antivirus, this will lead to conflicts while they are scanning and could cause system instability. These programs might detect one another as being malicious, even attempting to eliminate the other one. Since an antivirus does pose a normal level of performance impact, having two battling with each other will consume even more of the PC’s power.
Do you have any other tips for enhancing the performance of your computer while being protected by an antivirus solution? Let us know by getting in touch in the comments below.