Five first aid fixes for your computer

Computers are much like humans. They need to be cleaned regularly and have preventative measures put in place to ensure they do not get sick. Drew shares his five first aid fixes to keep your computer running at optimum speeds.

Clean me
Dust gets everywhere, no matter how hard you try to keep it out. That is true for inside your computer case as well. You may have never opened your computer case, generally there are screws at the back on the side that have to be removed with a screwdriver, or can be removed by hand. Dell computers are a little different and have a button you push.

The amount of dust which can build up over the space of a year or two is remarkable. Disconnect your computer for at least 20 minutes and ensure you have on shoes which have rubber in them, just in the case there is a discharge of electric residue. Do not remove any of the components. Use a vacuum to remove the dust from inside the computer. You may need to use tissues to wipe out some of the more entrenched dust around the fans of your Computer Processing Unit (CPU). You can also use a soft tipped toothbrush to remove the dust, as this will not scratch any of the computer parts.

Secure me
You wouldn’t step outside the house in 5ºC weather without a coat, and the same goes for surfing the internet without an anti-virus security program to keep you protected. It is important to have an anti-virus internet security program installed such as Avast Anti-Virus which provides a firewall to prevent viruses getting in and also a virus scanner in case something was missed.

To get a free Anti-Virus program, go here – http://www.yourlifechoices.com.au/news/free-antivirus-and-adware-removal

Scan me
Viruses and other infections can sneak their way past your firewall in many different formats, so it is important to scan your computer on a regular basis to keep your computer infection free. Set a day of the week where you turn your computer on and start the scanning process while doing some household chores.

Turn me off
Like humans, our computers need their sleep. The longer you leave your computer turned on, the more processes build up and start to clog up the memory. It is recommended that you turn your computer off every day to prevent it slowing down and to increase its lifespan. It is also important to remember that ‘Sleep’ and ‘Hibernate’ modes are great processes to use when you are in a hurry to leave the house, but never substitute it for a full shutdown of the computer.

Keep me in good shape
If you fill your car with boxes of items you will be using over the next month, your car will consume more fuel per kilometre than if those items were in your garage. That is a similar concept to removing programs from your desktop. Your Random Access Memory (RAM) has a standard rate at which it runs, depending on the passive programs you have open. These include the desktop icons it is constantly looking at and even the desktop image.

While removing your desktop image may be going to the extreme, if you have a number of different program shortcuts, images and various other documents sitting on the desktop, it is worth deleting or storing them in a folder to help your computer process information faster.

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