SPEEDING UP A SLOW COMPUTER

You may already know that keeping your computer free of spyware and viruses, having at least three gigabytes of RAM, and avoiding programs that hog your computer’s memory are a good way to keep your computer from slowing down. A new trick is to have a solid state drive instead of the traditional hard drive. Solid state drives (no moving parts — no spinning disk) respond almost instantly in sending and receiving data.

We just watched a video on CNET-TV on how to install one. First, you copy the contents of your existing drive over to the new solid state drive. It’s surprisingly easy. (Google “replace hard drive with SSD on CNET-TV.”) But the “Crucial Adrenaline” drive from Crucial.com, seems even easier, because you can use it and keep the old drive in place.

The $118 Adrenaline is a 50 gigabyte SSD that works in tandem with the hard drive. Its software places the most frequently used files on the solid state drive and leaves the others on the hard drive. That way, you keep the space on the hard drive, but get the speed of solid state. (Gamers should go nuts over this.) More info at Crucial.com/ssc.

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