The second Monday in February is National Clean Out Your Computer Day. Give your computer a cleanup. More than just a peace of mind, a digital clean up may make your computer run more efficiently and make you more productive.
Files take up room on your computer. When a drive on your computer is full, it won’t run as efficiently and searches will take longer and use computer resources.
If you have a clean desktop and know where all your files are, you’ll be more productive. Don’t spend time searching for those files. Go right to it and get to work.
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Here are some tips for cleaning up your computer, and your digital life:
- Get rid of files you’re not using
If you have files hanging around on your computer from old projects remove them. Depending on how important they are, you may want to back them up. This is what I do: First I keep all the files for one project in a single folder, whether it is doc, images or code. To do this quickly open the project folder and sort by Date Modified. If you haven’t touched the folder in a year, it’s time to remove it. Back it up by either copying it to a backup drive, cloud or USB Drive.
- Take out the Trash/Recycle
If it’s in trash folder, delete it, but recycling (windows) or empty the trash (mac)
- Clean out the Downloads and Desktop
If you’re like me you probably have a message of files on both the desktop and download folder. Who knows what’s there and when you may need it. Open the download folder, scan through and make sure the most important files are moved to a SAVE ME (desktop/downloads) Folder. Don’t sort these yet, the first objective is to just clean out the folder you’re working on. Anything that you know you can download again (all that saved open source software) delete. Believe me, you don’t need 10 copies of old WordPress software.
- Uninstall Old Software
Remove the old software you’re no longer using. On the mac just go the applications folder and start uninstalling (as needed) and delete. On the PC open the Setting > Apps & Features. Visit http://www.laptopmag.com/articles/uninstall-programs-windows-10 for more details.
- Fix your startup folder.
These are programs that start when you turn your computer on. If there are any that have been added and you don’t need, they may be slowing down your startup time. You can easily turn them off to speed up your computer. On a PC this setting is located in the task manager. On a Mac, it’s under Preferences > Users & Groups.
- Defrag (PC)
If you have a PC make sure to run the defrag program if you are not doing it regularly. This optimizes the drive and a computer with an optimized drive will run faster.
- Check Anti-virus and Malware
This is a good time to make sure the latest version of your favorite anti-virus and malware software install is installed, running and up to date. If not, get it installed and updated. Now’s the time to run a full scan.
We could easily have a full article on this topic. Clean out your inbox. Remove the email in your inbox that just sitting there collecting dust.
- Archive out items that are over a year old.
- Just delete stuff you don’t need. Search for topics by sender and mass delete.
- Empty the deleted items and spam folder (after a quick glance through).
These are just a few items to you get your computer cleaned up and happy again, and who doesn’t like a clean computer. We have so much of our lives digital now, a cleaned up computer will keep it humming longer and unclutter your life.