7 Tips for Spring Cleaning Your Computer

We’ve turned the clocks forward and await the warmer weather that’s soon to come. Colorful flowers will blossom in May as a result of April showers. Its official, spring has sprung! Time to start planning a good spring cleaning.

If you haven’t already, it’s a good idea to add your computer to that spring-cleaning list. Our computers can get just as messy and cluttered as our homes. It’s not as noticeable as those dirty socks lying in the middle of the floor, but it’s equally important. Here are 7 tips for spring cleaning your computer to help you check this “to do” off your list.

1. Physically Clean Your PC.

Just as other physical objects in your house need some dusting and shining, so does your computer. It’s amazing just how dirty our computers can get if left unkempt. Keyboards are notorious for collecting crumbs, dust, and other tiny particles that fall into the little voids between the keys. Canned air is a great defense against dust or grit lurking in dark places.

Wipe down the casing of your computer with a microfiber cloth or slightly damp paper towel. Use screen wipes for the monitor. Do not use any harsh chemicals that could be damaging to your computer and its parts.

2. Tidy Up and Organize Your Files.

Your computer’s hard drive can become cluttered with files, folders, pictures, videos, etc. Before you know it, you can’t find where you put anything. Set aside some time to take a look at what’s on your hard drive. Delete unnecessary files and organize others into folders. This will make it easier for you to find them later. Be careful not to delete essential system files or folders. If you are unsure as to what the file is, it’s best to keep it.

3. Delete or Archive Old Emails.

Emails tend to build up quickly. In just a couple of months, you could have hundreds of messages just sitting in your inbox taking up space and bogging down your productivity. One way to organize important messages you want to keep is to create folders for them. For all the others, get rid of them. Some email programs come with an archive feature.  This allows you to store older messages on your hard drive, so they can be retrieved at a later time.  A rule of thumb for keeping a clean inbox is to only keep messages in there that require action steps.

4. Strengthen Your Security.

Adding security to your computer will help to keep your data safe. If you don’t currently have an anti-malware program for your computer, it’s highly recommended that you get one. At the very least, you should turn on security features already included with your computer. There is no shortage of computer threats out there and you need to be protected.

5. Install Updates.

Installing updates not only keeps your computer programs up to date, they also fix security vulnerabilities that are found after a software’s release. Your computer may already be set to install updates automatically. If you are on Windows 10, go to Settings from your Windows menu and click on Update & Security. Select Windows Update from the menu on the left, and you will see the last time your computer was updated. If it says you are up-to-date, then you are set to automatically update. You also have the option to check for updates.

6. Backup Your Files.

Now that your computer is all cleaned up, it’s time to backup! Create a copy of important files onto an external hard drive, or thumb drive. There are also software programs you can use to automatically backup your computer on a regular basis. Doing this will ensure you have a backup of important files just in case you experience an issue in which your data cannot be recovered.

7. Call the Professionals!

Looking to clean up your business computers? Maybe it’s time for some new systems. Cleartech Group can assess your specific situation and provide you with a solid plan for the future. Don’t hesitate to give us a call at 978-466-1938. One of our experienced professionals are more than happy to help!