In your first post you advised using SUPERAntiSpyware, Malwarebytes (Pro) and avast!. SUPERAntiSpyware Free does not provide real-time protection or scheduled scanning so there is no need for it to run at startup and waste system resources. However, when installing SUPERAntiSpyware it installs to run at each start-up automatically. I recommend to disable its' startup and use it as a separate stand-alone on-demand scanner.
what do you define as an older computer?
That definition will vary from one's personal opinion to another. If the OS has been updated, then I would consider the computer old but that does not mean its unusable anymore. I still have an XP system that works fine. By older I was meaning a computer that has been used a lot, many programs are installed/removed routinely...they have a natural tendency to slow down. That does not appear to be your situation though if you're wiping your hard drive clean every few months. What brand (make) computer are you using?
i find that I wipe my laptop every few months to increase the speed. is that normal?
Not in my opinion but I know folks who routinely do that. My XP system is almost 8 years old and I've never had to wipe it clean.
i find it crashes several times a day, even after installation, usually after waking up from sleep
A lot of folks complain about this. Have you tried changing the power settings?
how do I set the firefox remember history days? i think that the format has changed. i don't see the option anymore.
Open Firefox, go to Tools > Options > Privacy Tab and there is a History setting for FF to Remember history, Never remember history and Use custom settings for history. I believe FF did away with the remember history days many versions ago. There is an Expire history by days
add-on but I'm not sure if it works with the current version.
my firefox can get slow. i notice it takes up more ram, and that is why i have always prefered chrome
:Note: Firefox will generally take longer than IE to start simply because it has more data to load. Also, due to the way Firefox caches pages it will use more RAM the longer the browser is open. Closing and restarting more often will clear that out and should lower your resource usage dramatically.
By default Firefox checks for three different updates (Firefox updates, Use a background service to install updates, and Search Engines) when launching the program. Try turning off updates. Go to Tools > Options > Advanced > Updated tab and uncheck
"Automatically check for updates to Firefox", then click Ok.