We all use Laptops,PCs in our day-to-day life. In many ways. But unlike humans, they cannot take care of themselves entirely on their own. So as we use them to our needs, we also need to take care of them for their prolonged life. In short, it’s a good idea to clean your PC regularly, both physically and virtually ! In this article, I’ll share with you, few useful tips on cleaning and optimizing your PC/Laptop through some tools available in Windows :
Use in-built Disk Cleaner in Windows
Type cleanmgr in the Start and run the tool. Select C: drive for cleaning as it is usually the primary partition where Windows is installed. It analyzes the disk and shows a list of unnecessary files once it completes analysis.
Select the files to delete and proceed. Additionaly you can also clean-up system files (See image below) which can gain you some additional space , but is not always necessary. As C: is the default partition where your OS is installed, cleaning it frequently helps Windows to boot a little faster and access system files faster. You can also occasionally clean the junk files on other drives by selecting the drive letter when the tool launches and following similar procedure.
Use in-built Defragmentation tool in Windows.
Files are not actually stored on the hard-disk like they appear on your file manager. Windows, like any OS, stores files in a way that’s convinient for it to access randomly. In this process of storing, each file can be divided into hundreds of fragments and be stored at free slots available on HD. But, when you need that file, Windows has to access all the fragments of it without clutter, which becomes a tedious task as files get more ‘Fragmented’ . Thus, this brings us to the solution that is, to ‘Defragment’ the files so that each file has least no. of fragments or even best, a single piece. This is what defragmentation does, thus helping your PC to access the files faster when you need them and keeping the HardDisk healthy.
Windows has an in-built option to defragment your drive. To launch it, go to the Properties of the drive you want to “Defrag” (Defragment) and under ‘Tools’ tab, select ‘Optimize’ option. Alternatively, you can type defragui in the Start to launch the same tool. Next select all drives and click ‘Analyze All’. Once it finishes the analysis, it shows the % of defragmentation in each drive next to it. Select drives having a value greater than 5% and click ‘Optimize all’. See if defragmentation is scheduled or not in the same window. If it’s not, then ‘Turn On’ a scheduled defragmentation and select a Weekly schedule. Once you ensure this, you need not worry about defragmenting again. Your PC takes care of it.
Check for Hard Disk errors.
In course of time, PC’s HD is prone errors which deteriorate its performance or even may cause it to malfunction. Checking and correcting it asap helps in extending it’s life in some sense. Again, Windows’ in-built tool comes in handy.
Go to the Properties of target drive, and under ‘Tools’ tab, click on ‘Check’ button. If the it’s your Windows drive ( Usually C: ), it’ll ask you to schedule the boot-time Disk check, i.e it’ll check that drive the next time you turn-on your PC. But, again if you change your mind, you’ll have a choice to skip the Disk Check at the boot, which I recommend you not. These disk checks can be done rarely like once a month and unfortunately, there’s no in-built option to schedule it.
That’s all for now. Just by following these simple measures, you can avoid a major heart-attack on your PC 😉
P.S : You can also use CCleaner for cleaning HD & additional maintenance tasks.