Cleaning up you computer

Computer Cleanup for Increasing Operating Speed

  1. Check how much space you have on your hard drive
    • My Computer Icon >> Right Click on Local Disk (C:) >> Choose Properties
    • Or – From Windows Explorer >> Open My Computer Folder >> Right Click on Local Disk (C:) >> Choose Properties
    • If your disk is more than 75% full you should do step #2.
  2. Get your hard drive close to or below ½ full; Systems will run more efficiently with more hard drive space. If you can’t live without many of the files you may want to consider an external hard drive.
    • Back up unnecessary files onto CD or other device and remove them.
    • Remove any programs you are not using through Start > Settings > Control Panel > Add or Remove Programs
  3. Run the Disk Cleanup Utility
    • Start Button > Programs > Accessories > System Tools > Disk Cleanup
    • On the Disk Cleanup Tab you can safely check off all of the boxes but I usually check all except Office Setup Files and Compress Old Files. Each gives you a description so you can decide.
  4. Run the Disk Cleanup Utility again.
    • Click on the More Options Tab. You will see a box for System Restore. Your computer saves restore points that you can go back to if your computer ever has a problem. For example, if you installed new software today and your computer stopped working tomorrow you can go back to the last successful restore point prior to today. However, your computer saves many of these points. I have freed up as much as 3 GB by cleaning this up. If your computer starts successfully and you haven’t made any major changes in the last 30 days you can safely clean this up.
  5. Run the Disk Defragmenter
    • Start Button > Programs > Accessories > System Tools > Disk Defragmenter
    • If you have never done this, or do this infrequently, it may have to run for at least several hours. So, you may want to start it and go do something else or go to bed then check it in the morning. You can always pause it. Ideally, the cleanup and defragmentation should be done monthly.
    • Caution: On computers with hard drives more than 80% full I have seen this process never complete. It just keeps resetting itself.

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