Clean Up Your PC to Improve Performance
One of the first things you should do when you start optimizing your PC is clean up all the junk that has accumulated over time. Get rid of the junk and you will definitely notice a significant increase in performance. Let me explain why.
In a way, computer junk is very similar to real-life junk and clutter. Optimizing PCs is a bit like making your home comfortable and your kitchen practical. Imagine that your house is full of junk (mine is sometimes, so not too hard to imagine). Imagine clothes and odd shoes lying around, books and DVDs scattered all over the place, USB cords and other cables poking out of drawers… Well, you get the idea. Some people’s houses are actually even worse than that and have things like spare car parts lying around. And some people simply never through anything away. So their houses are packed with old furniture and other stuff that should really be either given to a charity shop or thrown away.
Now answer this simple question – would you be comfortable living in a cluttered home? For me, the answer is “No”. When your home is full of junk, finding the things you need is really hard and everything starts taking longer than it should.
Same with computers – the more junk you have, the more time Windows needs to process everything. That’s why it’s important to remove all the junk you can find and get your PC more organized. Let’s get started!
Clean your desktop
Quoting Fräulein Maria from “The Sound of Music”, let’s start at the very beginning. In case with computers, it’s your desktop. Does yours look like this?
Hopefully not, but it’s still good to clean it up.
The first thing you should do is move all files from your desktop. By the way, I’m not talking about program launch icons – we’ll discuss organizing them later on.
Windows keeps your desktop in the RAM and the more stuff there is, the less RAM you have for other things. So, if you have tons of large video files plastered on your desktop, your computer will take longer to start up. And if you are generally low on RAM, a cluttered desktop may decrease overall computer performance. That’s why you should move all files to ordinary folders.
Now that you’ve moved all files from the desktop, it’s time to organize your icons. First let’s get rid of the icons you don’t use. Windows has a tool that will help you do it. Here is how to use it:
Now that you’ve gotten rid of the icons you never use, you can automatically arrange the remaining icons. Here is how:
Now that your desktop looks neat, it’s time to remove hidden clutter – junk files.
Run disk cleanup
Disk cleanup is one of the most important parts of computer maintenance. Remember that the more free space there is, the faster your computer will run. Performing disk cleanup is essential because Windows accumulates unnecessary junk files that massively reduce computer performance. These files are just like the junk hidden deep in your wardrobe – you can’t see it, but it’s still there and it’s wasting space. So how do they get created in the first place?
Most Windows programs create temporary files for a number of purposes, but mostly when a program needs more memory for its tasks or when a program is working with large chunks of data. Programs like Microsoft Office also create temporary files and use them for keeping a copy of your data in case the program crashes.
In the perfect world, temporary files would be deleted automatically when the programs close. Unfortunately, sometimes things go wrong. Poorly written applications, improper shutdowns, and freeze-ups often leave temp files behind. That’s how gigabytes of clutter are created. Another type of temporary files is Temporary Internet Files. These files are created by the browser and are often kept for a lot longer than necessary.
Deleting junk files is easy enough – all you need to do is run the built-in Disk Cleanup tool.
This should free up a considerable amount of disk space. If you want to free up even more space, delete all except the most recent System Restore Points. To do that, just click on the More Options tab and click on Clean up under System Restore
Just like XP, Windows 7 allows you to delete old System Restore Points and shadow copies. To do that, simply click on Clean up system files and then click on Clean up under System Restore and Shadow Copies. Make sure you are running the tool as administrator – otherwise you won’t get the option to delete System Restore Points
Instructions how you can schedule disk cleanup and more tips in our ebook “Turbo Windows – the Ultimate PC Speed Up Guide”. Download it for FREE now!