6 Ways to Keep Your PC Optimised
Keeping your PC clean both physically and digitally is essential to keep it running at an optimum level. Here are a few tips to help improve your PC’s performance and lengthen its life from the experts at FileHippo.
Slim Down the Software
Running too many programs at the same time is a drain on your computer’s resources and can slow it down. When Windows boots up, there are programs that start which you may not necessarily need. You can control which ones you want to run through your Task Manager (accessed via CTRL, ALT, DELETE). Navigate to Task Manager’s startup tab, right-click on the program you want to disable and then reboot your PC.
Note: some programs are essential to keep your computer running correctly. Make sure you research online first before disabling a program at startup.
Uninstall Unused Programs
Getting rid of unused software is an effective way to free up more space on your computer. Go to ‘Programs and Features’ in the Control Panel (Windows 7) or by right-clicking ‘Start’ and navigating from the pop-up menu in Windows 8.x. For Windows 10, it’s ‘Apps and Features’, accessed via the ‘Settings’ cog.
Anything you installed yourself but never use can go – but if you’re not sure whether a program is necessary for the smooth running of your system and other apps, Google them first before uninstalling.
Clean Up Your Disk Space
This is like getting unwanted clutter out of your hard drive. Windows 7, 8.x and 10 all have different ways of accessing clean-up resources – for Win 7, from Start, go to All Programs -> Accessories -> System Tools. For Windows 8.x, just hit the WIN key, type ‘disk cleanup’, and select the option to free up disk space. In Windows 10, press the Windows Start button and you’ll find it under ‘Windows Administrative Tools’.
The cleanup tool will remove all the temporary files that build up on your hard drive and any cached files. It will empty your recycle bin too – make sure you’ve moved everything you want to the recycle bin first.
Reorganise Your Disk
Over time, as your PC accesses and uses files, they start to become fragmented and muddled up, which impairs performance. Defragmenting your hard drive brings your files back into contiguous blocks again. Only defragment HDD-type drives – SSD-type drives don’t need it. In Windows 7, the Disk Defragmenter is in the System Tools – in Windows 8.x, just type ‘defrag’ after hitting the ‘WIN’ button. In Windows 10, the tool is called ‘Defragment and Optimise Drives’ and can be found under Windows Administrative Tools.
Use PC Cleaning Software
As an alternative to maintaining your computer manually, there are various free PC cleaner programs which are free to download. CCleaner is an effective tool that cleans and organises your disk space without having to use the various administration tools in Windows. Choosing the ‘Slim’ installer version of CCleaner will ensure you don’t get any unwanted extras.
Keep Your Machine Clean
Dust is a great insulator, which can contribute to your computer overheating. Giving your computer a thorough clean involves taking it apart, which can violate any guarantees. If it has a maintenance warranty, have it cleaned professionally, but if not, and you’re feeling confident enough, there are some good guides online on how to give your machine a proper valeting.