Declutter your PC or Mac for better security and more storage

How to remove unwanted and unused programs from your home computer.

Declutter your PC or Mac for better security and more storage

You probably have a regular cleaning schedule for your house, but pay little thought to tidying up your desktop computer in the same way.

However, a regular e-clean-up is arguably just as important as keeping your house in order.

Unwanted files and unused programs can slow down your computer unnecessarily, leave you little storage space, and even present a security risk.

One of the things that stops many people from removing unwanted or unused files is simply the knowledge of how to go about the process. Well, here’s our easy-to-follow guide to help you declutter your desktop.

Removing files from your PC
Once you have found all the unused programs you want to remove from your desktop, there are two ways to dump the files. You can open the uninstall function that may have come with the application, or you can use the “Add or Remove Programs” function from the Control Panel in Windows.

Using the uninstall function for the relevant application is specific to the program you are using, but if you want to work through Windows, you need to click on the “Programs and Features” icon inside the Control Panel.

This will give you a full alphabetical list of all the programs installed on your computer, although, if you are using Windows 10, it will only show desktop programs and won’t include Windows Store apps.

Find the program that you want to remove on the list and select it by clicking on it with a single left click of your mouse. Once you have done this, an uninstall button will appear at the top of the window. Click this and follow the prompts. Some simpler programs will disappear instantly while larger programs may require you to go through an uninstall program.

You can check that the program has been removed by going back to the “Programs and Features” list to see if the program no longer appears there.

Removing files from your Mac
As with most computer issues, removing applications from your Mac is considerably easier than doing it in Windows.

First, go to the Finder and navigate your way to the Applications folder and select the app you want to uninstall. Then, simply drag the application icon to the Trash or right click on the application and select “Move to Trash”. Then, right click on Trash and select “Empty Trash”.

Some applications will leave behind preference files and caches, and if you want to delete these as well, it may be a case of locating the app’s support files. If you would rather not look around for these files yourself, you can use a program like AppCleaner to handle the task. 

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    COMMENTS

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    edit-for-me
    4th Apr 2017
    12:25pm
    Another great way to declutter your computer (PC) is to locate duplicate files and very large files. I am doing this now. There are many add on utilities for this. Or simply use Windows Explorer to help. Go to Details view on any folder and sort by size then by name. You will see the super large files this way - and also the duplicate files when sorted by name.
    Rosret
    4th Apr 2017
    4:57pm
    ...and while yourlifechoices seem to be very pro Apple; isn't annoying how Mac duplicates files all the time - so annoying.
    It is only easier to use an Apple if you are happy to give up control of your own computer.
    biddi
    4th Apr 2017
    5:46pm
    How do you declutter an Android (Samsung) tablet, please?
    Rosret
    4th Apr 2017
    6:56pm
    Start deleting.
    Download your photos and videos to a computer and then delete them off your tablet.
    Remove any unused games and apps. You can get them back if you need them.
    Close all the open apps and close all the open internet sites.
    Clear your history on the internet (- the three vertical dots on the right hand corner) and then clean up all the cookies and other stuff it asks you to delete.
    Your tablet is a mini computer so all the things you can do to your PC you can do to the Android - so much better than an iPad.
    biddi
    5th Apr 2017
    12:51pm
    Thanks, Rosret.
    Only have this tablet, no PC, but very few photo's anyway.
    Always clearing history but have masses of stuff bookmarked.
    Do those bookmarks links use up much space?
    Thanks for your help :)


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