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Musings of an underpaid private

Don't forget about your computer!

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With the new year just around the corner it seems like a perfect time to do some computer maintenance. If your one of those people who do it regularly then pay this no heed, if not take a quick look.

  1. First things first, your browser. It's probably a good time to clear that cache of websites you've visited, naughty or nice. It does take some space on your computer and should make it run marginal better.
    • If your browser is storing your passwords you should probably figure out what sites you have passwords it stores and delete sites you don't use anymore. Write down, or copy and paste, the passwords and usernames you do use and think about changing passwords for the new year.
    • Also you should check your download history and see if you want to clear that as well.
    • This is also a good time to make sure your browser is up to date
    • Click here if you have a google account to see if you need to erase your search history.( Turn it on/off if you want.

  2. Now that we have the browser done time to focus on the anti-virus. First thing is to make sure it is up to date and download an update if you need one.
    • The next step should be obvious but if state it anyways. Run a scan and see what comes up. If anything does show up, take care of them.

  3. Time to move to the operating sysytem (if you have a Mac you can go take a seat with the rest of the artist and hipsters over there ----------->. If you have Linux, why are you reading this you should know your OS well enough.)
    • De-frag all your hard drives you have on your computer. Should set this up to do weekly while your doing this
      • Don't follow this if you have an SSD this will decrease the life span of it, if you have a SSD insure that automatic de-fraging is turned off. Hybrid HDD/SSD drives should only be de-fraged sparingly, but do so at own risk.

    • Clearing up unused files and Registry errors.
      • If you know your way around the computer better then most then you might be able to do this yourself, if not I recommend a program called CCleaner{1}. Free and actually works. I'll put a link at the bottom.

    • Clearing up that unused disk space.
      • You should know all that data you hit delete doesn't really get deleted and it is still recoverable by experienced people or by looking up a tutorial on the internet really. I recommend either CCleaner, mentioned above, or a program called FileShredder{2} or both as I do. Or you know look up something else. This process can take a while depending how secure you want to do it. Something to have your computer do while your out of the house.

    • Back-up your stuff. Just in case. Always good to keep it in a external drive.
      • If you want you can also make a sysytem restore point.

  4. At this point you have everything deleted you don't need and everything you need stored in a safe place. Think about when was the last time you cleaned out your case, if you have no idea you should probably do it. If you have a pet you should know by now that hair gets EVERYWHERE that includes the inside of your computer

These are my recommended programs, I use them multiple times without getting a virus but understand all risks with downloading from the internet. read the pages before downloading and if you think they are fishy don't. If asked by a Mod I will remove these links. If anyone else has any programs they would like to suggest post it in the comments I'm thinking about posting a version of this in the Tech Help section or just Entertainment Inc.

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