Ubuntu Linux is a polished Debian-based Linux distro; however, you may start to experience some system lag days after installation. There are many reasons this might happen. If you want to speed up your Ubuntu desktop performance, then follow these simple tips and tweaks. These tips will help you smooth out your system performance so that you can do your regular tasks more easily. You don’t have to follow all of the tips, but even just a few of them will make a big difference in the overall performance of your Ubuntu system.
Tips To Speed Up Ubuntu Linux Performance
Many places on the internet will tell you how to speed up your Ubuntu performance, but not all of these tips are safe. I only want to share tweaks that won’t risk damaging your system because stability and reliability are more important than a little extra speed.
1. Manage Startup Applications
A clean install of Ubuntu usually runs smoothly and quickly, but as you add more apps to your system over time, it can start to bog down. That’s because startup applications use a lot of resources when the system is booting up, which can slow things down and cause poor performance. So it’s a good idea to manage startup applications carefully on an Ubuntu system.
Many apps, including a Bluetooth manager, email client, remote control, and visual assistant, might not be necessary when you first turn on your computer. To reduce the number of apps that start automatically, follow the below steps:
- Gnome Application Drawer >> Search for Startup >>Add/Remove/Edit as you like
- Unity Dash >> Search for Startup >>Add/Remove/Edit as you like
2. Install Preload
Preload is a background system tool that uses artificial intelligence to understand the behavior of the system user. This results in faster loading times for applications, depending on how often they are used. To install preload in Ubuntu, follow the command from the Terminal:
sudo apt install preload
3. Create a Swap Partition
If your machine has less RAM, you should make a swap partition during the initial Ubuntu installation. Normally, the Swap partition is made to be double the size of the actual RAM. For example, If you have 2 GB of RAM, then the Swap Partition will be 4 GB in total size.
This partition will use your HDD as RAM to speed up the launching of applications and background processes. Do not create this Swap partition if you have more than 4 GB RAM.
If you forgot to make a Swap partition during Ubuntu installation, don’t worry! You can easily follow one of the many tutorials available online on how to do so.
4. Reduce the Default Grub Load Time
When a laptop starts up, the Grub screen displays options for dual-booting OSes or starting recovery mode. Usually, users have 10 seconds to choose. That means they must wait anywhere from 0 to 10 seconds or hit Enter to proceed. To reduce the time spent waiting on this screen, follow these instructions:
Run the following command.
sudo gedit /etc/default/grub
GRUB_TIMEOUT=10 to GRUB_TIMEOUT=2. This will make the Grub load time quicker, at only 2 seconds. To implement this change, run the following command.
5. Choose the Best Mirror for Software Updates
If you have a slow internet connection, this procedure will select the best server for updating the Ubuntu system.
Application Drawer >> Search for Software & Update >>Ubuntu Software Tab >>Select Best Server ( Download From Tab )
The system can determine which server is nearest to you by starting this test. This will help get updated files into your system more quickly during a software update or upgrade. Speeding up the Ubuntu system in this way enables it to install all new security bug fixes and missing drivers that are required.
6. Reduce Overheating
The overheating problem is very common on laptops, making the laptop run slowly and giving a poor performance. However, a very effective tool in the Ubuntu repository can help cool down your system: TLP. After installing TLP, you need not do any configuration; just run the command.
sudo apt update sudo apt install tlp tlp-rdw sudo tlp start
7. Use apt-fast instead of apt-get
The apt-get command is a commonly used one when installing or updating software on an Ubuntu system. However, I recommend using apt-fast instead for a faster update or download of app packages while utilizing multiple connections simultaneously. To install apt-fast via the official PPA, use the following commands:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:apt-fast/stable sudo apt update sudo apt install apt-fast
8. Use a Lightweight Desktop Environment
If you find that Ubuntu’s default Gnome desktop environment is too heavy for your system, you can always try installing a lighter-weight desktop environment like Xfce or LXDE. I have a detailed tutorial on various desktop environments for Ubuntu if you’re interested in learning more.
9. Enable Proprietary Drivers
If you want to access the newest Ubuntu games and engage in high-level graphical design, you must enable proprietary drivers. Modern Linux laptops and desktops have great processing power and graphics cards, but you won’t be able to utilize them to their fullest potential without these drivers. To install and see which ones are available for your hardware, go to Applications Overview >> Software & Updates >> Additional Drivers >> Install/Apply changes.
10. Use System Cleaner Apps on Your Ubuntu Linux
Just because your computer is running Ubuntu Linux doesn’t mean you can’t speed up its performance. In fact, a variety of System Cleaner apps are available on the market just for this purpose! With these apps, you can clean out unwanted files and folders in a flash so that your computer will be running faster than ever before.
So if you’re looking for a way to speed up the performance of your Ubuntu Linux machine, be sure to check out these awesome System Cleaner apps! Now that’s how you get the most out of your computer!
11. Remove Unnecessary Apps from Your Ubuntu Linux
Unnecessary applications can slow down your system. Go through the list of your installed apps and remove the ones that you no longer need or use. You can also use System Monitor Tools or “Top” to view the list of running applications and find out which ones are utilizing a lot of your system resources. You can then uninstall these unwanted apps to free up some space and memory usage on your computer.
12. Uninstall Unused Language Packages
If you don’t need other languages on your system, then uninstall them to free up some space and resources. You can do this from System Settings -> Region & Language -> Manage Installed Language. Here you can select the language packages you don’t need and click on Uninstall.
13. Update Your System Regularly
Keeping your system up-to-date is very important in order to get the latest improvements and bug fixes released by Canonical (the maintainers of Ubuntu). To update your system, open the Software Updates app and click on Check. Then follow the instructions to install any available updates. Or else you can run the following command in the Terminal:
sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade
14. Choose a Lightweight App over a Heavy one
If your computer is short on resources, then you can opt for lighter alternatives to different applications. For instance, use Firefox instead of Chrome or VLC instead of any other media player. Also, try to install lightweight themes and extensions that can help reduce system resource usage. This will help you run applications faster and more efficiently.
15. Optimise Your System Settings For Speed
There are some basic system settings that can be changed to improve system performance. Go to the System Settings and set the power settings to Balanced or Power Saving if you are running low on battery. The refresh rate can be adjusted under Settings >> Display. A high refresh rate will result in more power being used.
16. Disable Unnecessary Services
Services are applications that run in the background and can be used to manage certain system activities. But some of these services may not be necessary or useful for your system. To check the list of running services, open a Terminal and run the command:
sudo service --status-all
You can then disable any unwanted or unnecessary services with the command:
sudo service <service_name> stop
17. Clean up Ubuntu Linux
The most powerful command in UNIX/Linux Terminal is apt. With this, you can do nearly everything about software installation and downloads. Over time, the data collected from downloaded files caches on your hard drive, slowing the system. To prevent this from continuing and affecting performance, running the following command will remove all caches stored on your hard drive.
sudo apt clean
Don’t worry; this won’t delete any of your installed applications.
I will now highlight application “dependencies.” When you install an application, other small related applications are installed as well to enable full functionality. However, if you uninstall the main application at that time, the dependencies or small subsidiary applications will not be removed.
This creates junk files on your hard drive and slows down your system. To clean up all these unnecessary packages or unwanted “Dependencies” from your device, follow the provided command below.
sudo apt autoremove
These are just some ways to speed up Ubuntu Linux, but there are many more. You can also install a program like “Stacer,” which offers additional tips and tricks to help boost your system performance. Don’t forget to regularly clean out temporary files and cache in order to keep your system running smoothly.
The above tips and tweaks can help you speed up your Ubuntu desktop significantly, whether you’re using the latest version or an older one. Additionally, these tips will still be relevant and helpful if you’re using a Linux distro based on Ubuntu (like elementary OS or Linux Mint).
Does anything help you to make Ubuntu run faster? Did you like the tweaks mentioned earlier? Let us know your thoughts, questions, and suggestions in the comments section below.