Cleaning your computer, both internally and externally, is vital to the performance and lifecycle of your machine. Follow these simple steps to keep your machine in tip-top shape.
Windows and Apple automatically release updates to their software systems. Ensure that you have enabled automatic software updates on your machine.
Delete Internet Data
As you browse the web, your computer collects bits of information that inhibit its performance. Using your internet browser settings, delete all temporary files, cookies and offline content.
Scan for Malware and Adware
Malware and adware programs jeopardize your computer’s performance and security. However, there are many programs designed to scan your machine for malware and adware and delete them if found. Utilize one of these programs to secure your computer.
Check for Viruses
Protect your computer from viruses by purchasing an antivirus software that will scan for threats and delete them.
Speed up your machine by using your Mac Disc Utility or Windows Disk Defragmenter to your compress hard-drive files.
Remove Unnecessary Programs
Remove any unwanted programs from your machine. On a Mac, simply drag programs to the trash. On Windows, use the control panel to remove programs.
Once your computer is clean, back-up your system so that it will restore to its newly organized state. On a Mac you can do this through Time Machine. On Windows, go to the Start Menu and select System Restore.
To clean the external components of your computer, you will need a few supplies:
- Flat and Phillips-head screwdrivers
- Compressed air can
- Cotton swabs
- Rubbing alcohol
- Paper towels
Before you begin cleaning, power off your computer. Then remove the battery (if using a laptop) and unplug from power source.
External Vents and CPU
The fan and air vents, as well as the CPU heat-sink, collect dust and fibers over time. Access these areas by unscrewing the outside panels of your computer. Clean the vents with cotton swabs or tweezers, followed by compressed air, being careful to keep the nozzle a few inches away from the machine.
Re-assemble your computer, and once every piece is in place, clean the case with a microfiber cloth or dry paper towel. Clean the seams and edges of your machine with a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol. Dry immediately.
Turn the keyboard upside-down and shake. If you have a laptop, shake very gently. Use compressed air to thoroughly remove any remaining particles, then use an alcohol-dipped cotton swab to clean the tops of your keys and trackpad.
Clean the screen of your laptop with a lightly moistened microfiber cloth. If you have a desktop, clean your monitor with ammonia-free glass cleaner.
Your computer is now completely clean! Allow everything to dry, reassemble, power up, and be amazed by your machine’s performance.
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