Computer Maintenance & Safety Tips

Secure Your Computer Today with these Safety, Cleanup and Speedup Tips.

Most computer problems are software related and hardware rarely fails if Computer Maintenance and Security is taken seriously. Computer problems can also be caused by the lack of organization. Software related technical problems can be avoided if
Computer Maintenance is run monthly and Windows Updates and Antivirus software are updated and run regularly. I recommend Norton 360 available HERE and good for 3 computers.

Speed Up & Clean Up Your ComputerKeep your computer ‘smiling’ by clearing the desktop of all icons except the “Recycle Bin” and clearing the “System Tray” of unnecessary icons. This procedure will speed up the “startup” and “performance” of your computer. The icons that appear on your System Tray, next to the clock, are programs that are running in the background whilst you are working on your computer. The only programs that you need in the “System Tray” are your “security program icons” and notification icons i.e. sound icon, internet or wireless connection, etc. (You may need a technician or proficient computer user to remove icons from the System Tray. Contact me if you need further help with this procedure.)

Other software like Real Player – QuickTime – Picasa and other photo programs do not need to be running constantly. If you remove the icons from the “System Tray” and need to use the programs you can easily access them from the Program List, Start Menu or Quick Launch bar depending on where you have placed them.  Keep your frequently used programs on the “Start Menu” by “pinning” them from the Program List and put the MOST frequently used programs on your “Quick Launch Bar” or “Start Menu.” You just need to find the program on your “Program List” and then right click on the program and choose either “Pin to Start Menu” or “Add to Quick Launch.”

Documents should be kept in your “My Documents” folder (Windows XP) or “Documents” folder (Windows Vista & Windows 7) and pictures stored in your “My Pictures” folder (Windows XP) or “Pictures” folder (Windows Vista & Windows 7) to be quickly accessible.
The folder that you are working on can be placed on the desktop temporarily until your work is completed and then filed away in the appropriate folder as described above.

“Lean and Clean” is my motto and “less certainly is better” when it comes to computer software. Install only the programs that you need and will use. Stay away from free programs unless you are going to use them. Check with me if you are unsure if a program is safe to download.

It’s very tempting to download programs if they are FREE but many of these programs come down from the internet with “Spyware” attached that can track your movements as you surf the internet so it is very important to run your Antivirus software often. Spy files can steal your identity and compromise your security so be diligent and make sure that you, not only have good Antivirus software but you update and run it regularly.

Don’t wait until a catastrophe occurs! Use the above suggestions to arrange your folders, copy your “Documents” and “Pictures” folders onto a “Flash Drive” or another external medium regularly. If you would like to have a complete backup of your entire hard drive an external hard drive can be purchased and used for this purpose.

Remember to detach the external hard drive or Flash Drive from the computer and from the power supply after each backup to ensure its’ safety should a power surge or crash occur. Your computer “startup” will be slower if you keep external hard drives or flash drives permanently attached.

These simple procedures will ensure that your files and folders are easily found and your computer, regardless of its age, is running as fast as it did the day it was purchased.

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