How to Change Process Priority in Task Manager on Windows 10

Tech Ornate

Tech Explained, Windows

For millions of people worldwide, it is nearly impossible to live without technology. Whatever your reason might be, technology has become an essential part of our daily lives. A lot of us use technology for our work, for our studies, or simply for recreation. 

However, there are instances when our trusted computers fail us somehow, such as having no internet access. When we use applications on our computers, we encounter problems such as crashing or running slow. 

That’s why it is crucial to be quite familiar with the processes happening inside our computers. When instances like this happen, check the task manager.

What Is Task Manager?

 The task manager is a program found in any version of Microsoft Windows that provides data and information about what applications and processes are running on a computer. It helps you check the applications that are causing your computer to slow down and the ones running in the background that you don’t need. With the proper setup, you can maximize the efficiency of your computer.

Will Changing Your Process Priority Make Your Computer Faster?

One can maximize their computer through adjusting process priority. However, changing it will not make your computer any faster. It will only allow you to choose which application you want your OS to use its CPU time. Every program runs on “normal” by default, which means the OS runs automatically. 

The priority only commands the OS which program or application it should try to prioritize. Gamers change the process priority in their computers to get a better gaming experience while downplaying some background applications that might slow down their game. 

When to Change Process Priority

PC games, for instance, are already taking a massive percent of your CPU time. Changing process priority might cause problems to the other applications that need it. Thus, the perfect time to change your process priority is when your computer needs help sorting which applications are running to prioritize.

How to Change Process Priority in Task Manager

To change the process priority in Windows 10 computers, follow these steps: 

  1. Right-click on your taskbar and select Task Manager. You can also press Ctrl + Shift + Esc on your keyboard. This will show you a menu that shows different tabs. Each tab lets the user view and control the features running on the computer.
  1. Click the Details tab, which shows more detailed information about the processes running from different users on the computer. 
  1. Right-click the desired process.
  1. Select what priority level that you find befitting. 
  1. A confirmation dialog appears, then click Change priority.
  1. Click the operation, and you are all set.

Possible Complications in Setting Your Priority to “Real-Time”

Setting it into real-time means the process or the application is now the highest priority. It might cause your system to freeze. However, it may or may not crash your OS depending on how many applications use the CPU and memory.

Problems You Might Encounter 

Suppose you have a low-end processor such as an older generation or a single core. In that case, there will no longer be enough resources allocated for other programs that need the CPU time if you set an application as a high priority, especially if your system runs multiple tasks at a time. As a result, this might cause your system to slow down or, worse, freeze.

How to Fix These Possible Problems

Below are some of the things you can do to help fix these possible problems:

  • If within the budget, you can upgrade your processor. You can go for a newer generation with more threads and cores that can run multiple tasks and processes simultaneously.
  • You can increase the memory of your system by adding more RAM (Random Access Memory). With this, your system will be able to handle multiple applications.

If the budget is tight for now, you can disable startup apps that you do not need at the moment by following these steps:

  1. Open Task Manager, right-click on your taskbar and select Task Manager. You can also press Ctrl + Shift + Esc on your keyboard. 
  2. Look for the Startup tab.
  3. Right-click on the application, then click disable.

By doing this, the CPU will not use its resources, processing those disabled applications unless they are opened manually. 

Of course, the most basic way to avoid applications crashing is to close applications that you don’t need at the moment.

There is also a way to maximize your CPU performance which is to overclock the processor by increasing its clock speed. However, in a low-end system, this might create more problems in the future because it will also increase the temperature of the processor. 

If your PC does not have a high-performance cooler to reduce those temperatures during overclock, your system will automatically shut down to keep the whole system from overheating. High-performance coolers are costly, so rather than overclocking your processor, it would be better to save enough money to upgrade them.

Final Thoughts

Changing your process priority might not make any significant difference. That is why it is vital to upgrade your computer parts when you use applications and processes that might be too heavy for your computer. 

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