Hi Georgia –
Our office is closed this week, so we will be unable to help you in person.
Here is some information to get you started should you want to tackle part of the repair on your own.
The first thing to do is to uninstall any programs that aren’t needed any longer. You can do so by accessing the ‘Add/Remove Programs’ control panel (start->settings->control panel). Go through the list and uninstall anything you recognize as not needing. Also remove any security software (AVG, Norton, McAfee, Avast, Windows Defender, ClamAV, etc).
The second thing to do would be to download and run this program:
It’s called CCleaner, and it can automate some of the cleanup process. You should run both the Cleaner and Registry options on the left – allow CCleaner to fix, delete or repair anything it wants.
After that, run Defraggler, also made by the same company:
After that, check to see if the system has improved at all.
And finally, reinstall your security software. I recommend this program:
It’s free from Microsoft and works very well.
Then run a ‘Full’ Security Essentials scan & allow it to clean up whatever it finds.
Lastly, install all pending Windows Updates (For both Windows XP & 7, a shortcut to access ‘Windows Updates’ is in the Start Menu under Programs).
The above procedure should take the computer 2-4 hours, perhaps longer if there are many Windows Updates pending. If the system does not appear to be any better, it’s possible a complete reinstall of Windows may be in order (sometimes trying to clean a system does not work & starting over is the only solution).
Lastly, it’s possible your system is suffering from a hardware malfunction, especially a failing hard drive. A failing drive will cause unpredictable behavior – poor performance, instability, random crashes. It’s also a very common problem, especially for a laptop.
Regarding your Apple devices. Make sure you have the latest version of iTunes installed (http://itunes.com). If any of the devices are running iOS 5.01 or newer (you can checking in Settings->General->About), you can update the devices without a computer (from Settings-General->Software Update). The update process can take a long time and partially depends on the speed of your internet connection. On a slow DSL connection, it could take 2-3 hours just to download the software update for a single device.
hunter greene Brainspiral Technologies, Inc.