Preventative PC Maintenance


Like any machine, good maintenance can make it last much, much longer. A good analogy is oil changes for your car. You can go quite a while between changes, but if you don’t do it regularly and on time, the damage will much more catastrophic, and come much much sooner.

Maintain soon. Maintain often. Maintain always.

Backups!

This is probably THE SINGLE MOST IMPORTANT safety net you can do for your computer. Computers will always fail at some point. We rarely know when a computer will fail, so do not wait until you have problems to begin your backups.

  • Backups should always be done on a separate device. Do not simply make a copy of the file on the same computer/hard drive. The most common method for private users is to buy an external hard drive, and set automatic backups to go to that hard drive.
    • Backing up files to the same hard drive, but a different folder, is not a backup. If that hard drive fails, all the files may be lost – including the backups.
  • A general rule of thumb for external hard drives is to use one with twice the space of the internal hard drive. So if you have a 1 terabyte internal hard drive, purchase a 2 terabyte hard drive for backup purposes.
Backup and Restore
Windows 7 Backup & Restore

CCleaner

The general idea is to not use registry cleaners. Most of them are actually malware, and the rest are ineffective. However, CCleaner has many more tools for cleanup that could help keep a system running smooth:

  • System Restore
  • Duplicate File Finder
  • Disk Analyzer
  • Startup Application control
  • Drive Wiper (for privacy/security-minded individuals)
  • Cleaner; get rid of unwanted junk files, cookies, etc.
CCleaner
CCleaner