Spring Cleaning Your Computer

Image showing a hand with microfibre cloth cleaning computer keyboard.

We frequently hear about people spring cleaning their homes and offices, but when was the
last time you cleaned out your laptop or computer device?

There are some real ‘quick-wins’ when it comes to keeping your device running smoothly and in like-new condition. In celebration of spring being just around the corner, we have written up a few handy tips for
you to follow when it comes to spring cleaning your PC.

Tidy-Up Your Desktop

Spring cleaning doesn’t just mean making your PC run faster, it can also include layout
changes that will improve usability. Having an organised file structure can make it much
easier for you to find what you’re looking for, without being lost amongst numerous other
folders and documents. Cleaning up your main desktop is a good place to begin:

  • Start by looking through the items on your desktop, are they necessary?
  • Do you really need a desktop shortcut for the item or could this be removed?
  • Can any computer files be moved straight into the recycling bin?
  • Can any loose documents such as Word files, be filed into a folder to save desktop space? 

Once you’ve tidied up by running through the above checks, you can easily order your desktop items by your preferred options such as file name or date – carry this out by right-clicking on your desktop home screen, then click on ‘Organise By’. You can go one step further and hide all desktop icons if you really want. Simply right-click the desktop and uncheck the option under View>Show Desktop icons.

Clear-Up File Explorer

Remaining on the topic of tidying up documents, you could consider opening your Windows ‘File Explorer’ and taking some time to organise your personal files and folders. Are there numerous loose files that are all related to one specific topic, such as a client? Why not create a folder and drag and drop them in there? Not only will this look tidier, but it will save you time in the future.

Not sure where to begin with clearing up your File Explorer? We can almost guarantee that your Download folder may need a cleanup, or, just some quick deleting of old downloads that are no longer of use to you. We bet you feel better already!

Tidy up Your Web Browser Bookmarks

Of all the applications on your PC, you probably spend a large amount of time on your
computer’s internet browser. But, when did you last take the time to tidy up your bookmarks

Now is the perfect opportunity to take 15 minutes out of your day to re-organise your
bookmarks in a way that makes sense for you. Some of the bookmarks may be completely
out of date and need to be removed altogether! How you do this will depend on which browser you use – but for Google Chrome, click Menu > Bookmarks > Bookmark Manager.

Organise Your Task Bar

Is the taskbar that runs along the bottom of your device screen full of icons for applications
that you never use? You can easily unpin them from the taskbar, by right-clicking and then
selecting ‘Unpin from Taskbar’. A real quick win! You also have the option of rearranging the order of the taskbar icons by dragging and dropping the icons around.

The Task Bar on a Windows device runs along the edge of the monitor screen.

Uninstall Applications That You No Longer Use

Always a good place to start when it comes to freeing up hard drive space and tidying up
your PC.

A large number of apps that you install will also add startup programmes or background
services that you aren’t even aware of – and these can have a negative effect on how long it
takes for your PC to startup. Of course, this can be unavoidable and is fine if you use the applications regularly, but it’s easy to install a large number of applications over time and find yourself not using them at all. 

You can clear up your applications by visiting: Settings > Apps > Apps & Features to see a
list of applications that you can uninstall. Just one thing to note – there are a number of programmes that are dependent on other programmes in order to run correctly, so if in doubt, leave it well alone or seek professional advice before you uninstall anything.

Run Disk Clean-up to Free up Storage

A quick and easy way to clean up temporary files and free some storage space is to use the
Disk Cleanup tool built-in on Windows. Visit the Start menu, search for Disk Cleanup and
then click the Disk Cleanup option to launch the application.

Once launched, the Disk Cleanup tool will automatically get to work, or you can click ‘Clean
Up System Files. Make sure to carefully look through the list of files before deleting permanently, as
mentioned above – it’s important to have an understanding of what you are deleting, just in case you remove something you later regret.

Disk cleanup for Windows will recommend files to delete, to free up space.

Clean Your Keyboard, Monitor, and Mouse!

Dust on the inside of your PC can affect performance and cooling, but there’s probably dust elsewhere, too, such as on the screen of your monitor, in between the keys on your keyboard, or fluff stuck in the components of your mouse. We recommend taking time every so often to do a nice, deep clean.

You can quickly and easily clean your monitor screen using a standard microfiber cloth,
whereas cleaning your keyboard by removing the keys and using a vacuum cleaner can help
to rid any debris.

Final Thoughts On Cleaning Your PC

So there we have it. These are just a few of the options you have for giving your device a
spring clean, all year round! We hope you’re feeling inspired to search out your dusters. If you are looking for IT support, say hello to the sfG Software team.


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