Source: How To: Clean Your Computer Inside and Out
As you know, Spring cleaning isn't restricted to your house and home (or Spring). We live our digital lives via our computers every day, so expect to find a lot of random files, folders, and media that you've collected all year, but don't ever use. That's not even mentioning all the dust and grime on the outside. Dump all that wasted space and clean up your computer inside and out! Ready to start clean and fresh all year long? I thought so.
- Back Up Your Data: Having a backup of your data is essential - what would happen if your computer crashed, and you lost all those photos and documents!? There's a few ways to back up your docs, but getting an inexpensive hard drive can not only help you keep your data safe, but it can act as a secondary place to store files, so you can free up some room on your computer to run a bit quicker.
- Minimize Desktop Icons and Startup Programs: The more icons you have open up upon starting your computer, the harder it is for your machine to boot up. Your PC task bar or system tray (bottom right hand corner) and your Mac's dock shows the programs you have set to do just that. This may be handy so you don't have to think about what to open, but it means extra work for your computer. Try not to overload your systems by automatically starting heavy programs (like Photoshop and Entourage) when you log in. Instead, start them up as you need them to spread out the CPU strain.
- Organize Your Desktop: Visually, it's easier to handle a clean desktop, but really, it just means that you now know where everything is. Clean up your desktop by organizing everything into files, and tossing the documents you don't need at all in the trash.
More from GeekSugar: 5 Apps and Sites to Keep You On Task
- Find Wasted Space: Use programs like Disk Inventory X to see what exactly is living on your hard drive. Delete ones you haven't used in six months, and consider backing up your music, movies, and photos to an external hard drive to free up some space.
- Empty Your Trash : Now that you've cleaned up your desktop and hard drive, take the leap and empty your trash! Files aren't gone just because you move them in the trash - you have to empty it too. One way for Mac owners to know for sure your files are gone for good is by using the Secure Empty Trash feature on OSX Leopard.
- Clean Up the Outside: Now that the inside of your computer is nice and clean, take a few minutes to clean up the outside as well. Cleaning your machine only takes a few tools (usually an air canister and some screen-safe wipes will do the trick), but you can also get a deeper clean by using a Q-Tip to clean between your keyboard keys. Just make sure your computer is off before you begin!
5 Tips to Help You Organize Your Life
9 Tips to Make Your Computer Last and Run Fast
Work It: 10 Apps Every Businesswoman Should Have
Follow GeekSugar on Twitter
Become a Fan of GeekSugar on Facebook