How to Stop Video Lag

By Katherine Johnson

A lagging video will often have sound that doesn't quite match up with the rest of the video. It can make the viewing experience annoying and time-consuming when you have to sit through constant buffering and garbled sound. Some videos will lag if your Web cache folder is full, hardware acceleration is enabled, your computer doesn't have enough virtual memory or if your buffer settings are incorrect. You can quickly correct all of these issues so your videos will play smoothly.

Clean Temporary Files

When your browser does not have enough available space, it can't properly load a video. Since the video can't be stored, it will slowly stream and lag when you try to play it in your browser or favorite video playback program. Clearing your browser's Web cache will free up the space required to stream your video without any lag. Access the Web cache by locating the "Internet Options" icon in your computer's "Control Panel." Locate the "Browsing History" heading and click on the "Delete" button. Check the box next to "Temporary Internet Files", click on the "Delete" button and click "OK."

Disable Hardware Acceleration

When your video is lagging and appears choppy the problem could be your hardware. Hardware acceleration can cause your video's playback to lag or crash. When you disable hardware acceleration it will allow your video player to select the correct options based on the requirements of the file.You can access the hardware acceleration settings on your computer from the "Control Panel." Click on the "Appearance and Personalization" heading and click on the "Personalization" link. Click on "Display Settings" and click on the "Advanced Settings" button. Click on the "Troubleshoot" tab and click on "Change Settings". Set the hardware acceleration setting to "None" and click "OK."

Increase Virtual Memory

Virtual memory allows your computer to use free space without having to add additional memory modules. If your virtual memory file is too small your video playback will lag. Increasing the size of your virtual memory file will allow you to create additional resources for video playback to use.You can increase your computer's virtual memory from the "Control Panel." Click on "System and Maintenance," then click on "System." Click on the "Advanced System Settings" link. Click on the "Advanced" tab and click on the "Settings" button under the "Performance" heading. Click on the "Advanced" tab and click on the "Change" button located under the "Virtual memory" heading. Select "Custom size" and enter both the initial and maximum size of your new virtual memory file. Click on the "OK" button when you are finished.

Reduce Excessive Buffering

Buffering is a way that your computer holds video data in storage until it can process it. If your video is buffering for long periods of time and the video is lagging you should adjust your video player's buffer settings. You should alter the buffer settings for your video playback program. You will also need to alter the buffer settings of any other video playback programs that you regularly use to prevent excessive buffering. These settings can often be accessed from an "Options" menu. From there you can access the menu for streaming media where you will be able to alter the buffer settings.