How to Speed Up, Clean Up, and Revive Your Home PC
Flowers are blooming and birds are chirping, which means it’s time to start your yearly spring cleaning extravaganza. While you’re emptying your closets, decluttering, and getting rid of the bloat in your life, why not do the same for your computer? Here are some simple, easy to follow tips to give your trusted Windows PC a little spring cleaning of its own.
Clean Up Your Hardware
We’ll start with the outside of your machine, since you probably have all those cleaning products out for your household cleaning anyway. Turn it off and unplug everything. Whether you have a laptop or a desktop, your main priority is probably going to be the keyboard and mouse. Luckily, you can clean them pretty easily with just a few household objects.
You’ll also want to get inside your computer’s case and clean any dust out of the fans to keep everything running cool and quiet. All you need is a little compressed air to do a pretty thorough job. Laptops, unfortunately, usually require a lot more work. You’ll have to refer to your computer’s instruction manual for more information on how to take it apart.
Tame Your Cable Clutter
As you head back to your desk to replace your newly-cleaned computer, take some time to organize your cables first. There are a number of ways to do this, from a simple binder clips on your desk to a a actual cable management part.
Get Up to Date
Alright, so you’ve plugged your machine back in at your pristine workspace, and now it’s time to get down to the good stuff: software. Before you do anything else, head to Windows Update and make sure all your software is up to date—drivers, service packs, security updates, and so on. Simply click the start menu and look for Windows Update. You will be brought to a new screen and can now just click on the updates you want to run!
Reclaim Hard Drive Space
If you’re starting to run out of space on your drive, it’s time to take a really good look at what might be causing it. There are better programs that will yield better results but to keep it simple just use the Windows’ built-in Disk Cleanup app. Find your C Drive and right click over it to select Properties. When the properties screen opens you will see the Disk Clean up. Once this is done then start deleting stuff you don’t need and getting some of that disk space back.
Protect your Hard Work
Keep your antivirus program turned on and up to date. We recommend Symantec Endpoint Protection which can be purchased through Cinch IT, but if you are in search of a something free there is always Microsoft Security Essentials: To download go to: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/security-essentials-download
Lastly Back Up Your Refreshed PC
Lastly, it’s time to back up your newly cleaned PC. Hopefully, you had a backup system in place before this whole thing, but if not, we recommend setting up a failproof, offsite backup system with Cinch IT. Once we set it up, you never really have to think about it again. Alternatively, you can always just back up to an external drive using the built-in Windows Backup, but we’d still recommend backing up your super important files to something like Dropbox, since this won’t protect you from things like fires, earthquakes, drive failures, or anything else that could destroy your backup.