Can I make my laptop run faster?

I suggest you do the following three relatively cheap upgrades:

  1. replace your hard disk drive with a quality SATA drive like a SSD of the Samsung evo series.
  2. increase RAM to 8 GB (you don’t need more)
  3. use Linux if possible.

For casual use, you can resurrect old laptops with Peppermint, Lubuntu, or Manjaro Linux XFCE but there are many other options too.