Declutter your computer

laptop and eyeglasses sitting on desk

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.

Written by YourLifeChoices Writers

YourLifeChoices' team of writers specialise in content that helps Australian over-50s make better decisions about wealth, health, travel and life. It's all in the name. For 22 years, we've been helping older Australians live their best lives.

Leave a Reply

woman writing a new year's resolution list

Why you might be failing your new year’s resolutions already

group of happy friends running on beach

One in three Aussies ‘not living the life they want’