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Your Computer Clean-up Checklist

Your Computer Clean-up Checklist

May 30, 2014

Just because your computer is chugging along doesn’t necessarily mean it’s time for a replacement. Sometimes it’s just a matter of straightening out your files and eliminating unused programs. Fortunately, the welcoming of a new season is a great time to tune up your computer. Here’s how these cleaning steps can boost your computer’s security as well as improve your machine’s performance.

Clear your Internet browsing history. 

As you surf the Internet, each item you view is saved locally on your hard drive. While this ensures that frequently visited web pages load quickly, it can also eat hard drive space and slow your computer’s performance. Kick things into high gear by deleting your Internet history. 

Delete old documents. 

Last year’s letter to your overseas aunt is only eating up precious hard drive space. Take the time to sift through your documents file and delete those you no longer need.

Uninstall unused programs. You’d be surprised by the number of games, media files and redundant programs your computer accumulates over time, especially if children use your computer. To free up space on your hard drive, open your control panel and remove or uninstall unwanted, unused programs.

Update your antivirus software. 

Antivirus software may not make your computer run faster but it can save your system from an untimely crash. These days, malicious viruses and worms abound. The best way to stay safe is to update your antivirus software. And make sure your software is scheduled to perform regular system scans and to send an alert in the event of an attack. 

Add memory. 

If you’re looking for an instant performance boost, random access memory (RAM) can help. That’s because adding more RAM helps a computer perform faster for only the fraction of the cost of a new machine.

Review startup mode. 

If you find yourself watching the clock while booting up your computer, you might want to consider reviewing your startup menu. Many programs are preconfigured to run automatically at startup even if they’re not needed. By unchecking a few unnecessary programs, you can significantly speed up the time it takes for your computer to reboot. 

Disinfect your keyboard.

The final step in spring cleaning your computer has little to do with your system’s hardware or software. Rather, busy hands and little fingers can easily turn a computer keyboard into a virtual petri dish. Reduce the spread of disease by running a disinfectant wipe along your keyboard.