OK, let’s be honest, your computer doesn’t really hate you, but sometimes it feels that way.  There are some basic things you can do on your own to help your PC run better overall and you don’t have to have to Computer Science degree to do them.

Run Disk Cleanup.  This free tool comes with Windows and will clean basic .tmp (temporary) files and other odds and ends.

Reboot!  One of the first things I ask when troubleshooting something is if the user restarted their PC.  It tends to fix many little glitches that may occur.  You don’t even have to power off all the way, just select ‘Restart’ from the power menu and let it reboot.

Do a virus scan.  If you have ESET antivirus, it will perform a startup scan every time the computer starts Windows.  Other antivirus software doesn’t always do it by default, so it’s a good idea to periodically (every couple of weeks) run a full system scan to make sure your PC is virus-free.  Sometimes people bring in their PCs for service saying Windows is really slow, only to find they’ve had a virus for several weeks!

Lastly, consider upgrading to a SSD (Solid State Drive).  When these drives first came out they were several hundred dollars for a very small drive.  Now you can get a 1TB SSD for around $100.  They have no moving parts so it’s like your computer is running off a big memory stick–because it basically is!  I tell my customers, if I put in the drive and you don’t think it sped it up, I’ll take it out and put the old one back in for no charge.  I’ve never had anyone take me up on that one 😉