FIX: Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

7 minute read
slow windows 10 desktop

If your Windows 10 desktop is slow to load, it may be as a result of viruses, damaged system files, full disk with no space, or even conflicts between third party applications.

This article offers some quick solutions to fix the problem, as and when it arises.

How to fix Windows 10 desktop is slow to load issue

  1. Boot in Safe Mode
  2. Temporarily turn off firewalls and any antivirus or malware prevention software
  3. Perform a Clean Boot
  4. Update the Display driver
  5. Run Windows Update troubleshooter
  6. Run DISM tool
  7. Run a System File Checker scan
  8. Run disk clean up
  9. Run System Maintenance Troubleshooter
  10. Run Microsoft Safety Scanner
  11. Perform a System Reset
  12. Enable Fast Startup

Solution 1: Boot in Safe Mode

Safe mode starts up your computer with limited files and drivers but Windows will still run.

Here’s how to boot in safe mode:

  • Restart your computer
  • From the Choose an option screenWindows 10 desktop is slow to load
  • Select Troubleshoot
  • Select Advanced options

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Select Startup Settings
  • Click Restart
  • Once your computer restarts, a list of options will come up.
  • Choose 4 or F4 to start your computer in Safe Mode

If the issue isn’t there while in Safe mode, then your default settings and basic drivers are not contributing to the issue.

Solution 2: Temporarily turn off firewalls and any antivirus or malware prevention software

Sometimes having multiple firewall, antivirus or malware programs, may at times prevent you from performing certain tasks or run processes on your computer.

If this is the cause of the issue, while still in Safe Mode turn either of the three off temporarily then try to log in again.

Ensure you turn these programs back on immediately after you’re done to prevent hackers, viruses and worms from damaging your system.

Solution 3: Perform a Clean Boot

If you manage to boot in Safe Mode, perform a clean boot to eliminate any software conflicts that may be causing the problem.

These conflicts can be caused by applications and services that start up and run in the background whenever you start Windows normally.

In order to successfully perform a clean boot on Windows 10, you have to be logged on as the administrator, then follow these steps:

  • Go to the search box
  • Type msconfig

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Select System Configuration
  • Find Services tab

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Select Hide all Microsoft services box

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Click Disable all
  • Go to Startup tab
  • Click Open Task Manager

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Close Task manager then click Ok
  • Reboot your computer

You will have a clean boot environment after following these steps. If you still find that Windows 10 desktop is slow to load, try the next solution.

Solution 4: Update the Display driver

Follow the steps below to update the Display driver:

  • Right click Start

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Select Device Manager
  • Find Display Adapters

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Click on Display Adapters to expand the list of adapters

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Right-click on the Display Adapter listed
  • Click Update Driver Software

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Select Search automatically for the updated driver software

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Restartthe computer

You can also check your computer manufacturer’s website and download the latest display drivers for your computer, and install the same.

Update drivers automatically (suggested)

After you have uninstalled your drivers, we recommend to reinstall/update them automatically. Downloading and installing drivers manually is a process that carries the risk of getting the wrong driver installed, which may lead to serious malfunctions of your system.

The safer and easier way to update drivers on a Windows computer is by using an automatic tool. We strongly recommend Tweakbit’s Driver Updater tool. It automatically identifies each device on your computer and matches it with the latest driver versions from an extensive online database.

Here is how it works:

    1. Download and install TweakBit Driver Updaterdriver updater starting window
    2. Once installed, the program will start scanning your PC for outdated drivers automatically. Driver Updater will check your installed driver versions against its cloud database of the latest versions and recommend proper updates. All you need to do is wait for the scan to complete.
      tweakbit driver updater scanning drivers windows 10
    3. Upon scan completion, you get a report on all problem drivers found on your PC. Review the list and see if you want to update each driver individually or all at once. To update one driver at a time, click the ‘Update driver’ link next to the driver name. Or simply click the ‘Update all’ button at the bottom to automatically install all recommended updates.
      Automatically Update complete
      Note: Some drivers need to be installed in multiple steps so you will have to hit the ‘Update’ button several times until all of its components are installed.

Disclaimer: some features of this tool are not free.

Solution 5: Run Windows Update troubleshooter

This automatically detects, and fixes most incorrect settings on your computer, so do the following:

  • Click Start
  • In the search field box, type Troubleshooting

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Click Troubleshooting
  • Click View all in the left pane

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Select Windows Update

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Click Next to run Windows Update Troubleshooter, then follow the instructions on the screen

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

If you still find that Windows 10 desktop is slow to load, try the next solution.

Solution 6: Run DISM tool

The DISM tool, or Deployment Image Servicing and Management tool, helps fix Windows corruption errors when Windows Updates and service packs fail to install due to corruption errors, like if you have a damaged system file.

Follow the steps below:

  • Click Start
  • In the search field box, type CMD
  • Click Command Prompt in the search results list

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Type Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /ScanHealth to scan for missing components
  • Type Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /CheckHealth to check for missing or broken files
  • Type Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth to scan and correct any causes of the Windows 10 desktop is slow to load issue
  • Press Enter

Once the repair is complete, reboot your computer and check if the problem persists, after which you can run an SFC scan as described in the next solution.

Solution 7: Run a System File Checker scan

A System File Checker scan checks or scans all protected system files, and then replaces the incorrect versions, with the genuine, correct Microsoft versions.

Here’s how to do this:

  • Click Start
  • Go to the search field box and type CMD
  • Select Command Prompt

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Right click and select Run as Administrator

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Type sfc/scannow

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Press Enter
  • Restart your computer

If you still find that Windows 10 desktop is slow to load, try the next solution.

Solution 8: Run disk clean up

Before doing this, ensure you have sufficient disk space on Windows drive, then do the following:

  • Click Start
  • In the search field box, type disk cleanup

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • The disk cleanup drive selection box will appear.

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Click Ok to set off the disk space calculation process

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

Note: this process cleans up files associated with your user profile. You can also use it to clean up files on your computer. Any infected data files may only be cleaned by completely deleting the file, meaning there’s a chance you may lose data.

Solution 9: Run System Maintenance Troubleshooter

The System Maintenance Troubleshooter resolves most of the common system problems, so do the following to run it:

  • Click Start
  • Go to the search field box and type Troubleshooting
  • Click on Troubleshooting

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Click on System and Security

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Click on System Maintenance

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Click Next

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

Follow the instructions to run the System Maintenance Troubleshooter.

Solution 10: Run Microsoft Safety Scanner

Microsoft Safety Scanner is a tool designed to locate and remove malware from Windows PCs. It only scans when manually triggered, then you get to use it 10 days after you download it.

However, it doesn’t replace your antimalware program. It helps remove malicious software from your Windows 10 computer that cause the problem.

Here’s how to run Microsoft Safety Scanner:

  • Download the tool and open it
  • Select the type of scan you want to run
  • Start the scan
  • Review scan results on the screen, which lists all malware identified on your computer

To remove the Microsoft Safety Scanner tool, delete the msert.exe file by default.

Solution 11: Perform a System Reset

Performing a reset allows you to choose which files you want to keep, or remove, and then reinstalls Windows.

Here’s how to get started:

  • Click Start
  • Click Settings

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Click Update & Security

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Click Recovery on the left pane

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Click Reset this PC
  • Click Get started and choose an option either Keep my files, Remove everything, or Restore factory settings

Note: all your personal files will be deleted and settings reset. Any apps you installed will be removed, and only pre-installed apps that came with your PC will be reinstalled.

Solution 12: Enable Fast Startup

Here’s how to do this:

  • Right click Start
  • Select Control Panel

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

 

  • Select Hardware and Sound

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Select Power Options

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Click Choose what the power buttons do link on the left side

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Click Change settings that are currently unavailable link at the top

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • If prompted by UAC, then click Yes
  • Ensure that Turn OnFast Start up is checked

Windows 10 desktop is slow to load

  • Restart the computer

Did any of these solutions work for you? Let us know by leaving a comment in the section below.

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