How to clean and set up your PC – Guide

Your PC is probably the piece of technology you use the most, besides your phone. You must take care of him, if only for another reason. Not only will it last longer, it will also perform better over time if you keep it. let’s show you how to take care of your computer in this manual. Of course, it’s hard to cover every aspect of this subject, so consider this a primer rather than a comprehensive guide.

How to clean your computer and peripherals

Windows PCs, especially desktops, come in all shapes and sizes, but the tips What we’re about to review here will help you clean your computer, whether you’ve purchased it or built it yourself. if you have a laptop, look at our recent Mac organization guide. All the steps we’ve detailed there will work just as well for a Windows notebook. It is possible to write a totally separate guide about how to clean keyboards, but the short version is what you’ll want to choose up a cap extractor and use it to give you unobstructed access to any debris and dirt that has formed. up under your keys. If the key covers have a lot of dirt and debris, the best option is to dip them in warm water and use a toothbrush to remove the build-up. Give them plenty of time to dry before reinstalling them on the keyboard. Once you’re done, turn off your PC and disconnect everything connected to it. You also want to turn off the power supply unit (PSU) by turning the toggle switch on its outside to the “O” position. Then push down on power button sometimes to discharge any static electricity you may be carrying. If possible, perform most of the steps we will describe externally. The last thing you want is to take the trouble to clean your computer and then let it dust off again. After moving the computer, begin by removing the side panels. Most modern cases allow you to do this without any tools, but you’ll need at least a screwdriver for most of the work we’ll detail shortly. When it comes to most internal computer screws, a 4-inch Phillips screwdriver should be all you need. Some components, like your GPU, may include Torx screws and the like, but don’t worry about them for now, we won’t disassemble them. If you don’t already have a decent set of screwdrivers and have something DIY about you, an iFixit driver kit is your best bet. The 16-, 32-, and 62-bit kits it sells are a great starting point and will come in handy with more than just your computer. If your PC has dust filters, remove them now and wash them in the sink before letting them dry. Depending on how long your computer has been gathering dust, you can remove some components, such as the GPU, to make everything easier to clean. If this is something you feel comfortable doing and it’s the first time you’ve removed any of the internal components, use yours phone to take pictures of the interior. The images will help you put all the pieces in their original places on the final. This is important as there is an ideal way to install many of the components on your computer. For example, you always want to install your GPU on the fastest PCIe lane available. When it comes to removing any PCI card, first unscrew the mounting bracket and then push the corresponding release on the motherboard before pulling the card out. Whether you decide to keep all of your computer’s internal components in place or not, you’ll need something to blow off all the dust. A can of compressed air is an option, but I like to use a Giottos rocket blower. It is designed for cleaning camera sensors and will not damage any of its components. It is also a one-time purchase. Whatever you have on hand, use it to blow away the dust that has been forming. up on your computer’s internal components, fans, and grilles. Pay special attention to heatsinks installed on your PC’s CPU, GPU, chipset, and voltage regulators. They will likely have most of the hardest-to-remove dust in their system, thanks to their tight fin piles. What’s more, especially bad build-up can make them ineffective at cooling these components, which in turn affects their performance. When cleaning any exposed PCBs, use an antistatic brush (like this one from OXO) instead of a microfiber cloth. You will avoid damaging any of the sensitive components on the board. You can wipe over any non-electronic parts with a damp microfiber cloth. At that point, all you have to do is put everything back in place. As a final tip, if there is any way to avoid leaving your desktop on the floor, you will eventually up spending less time cleaning it, as it won’t be near all the dust and dandruff that accumulates there. If your desk or living room setup doesn’t make it an option, a PC Tower stand is an inexpensive but effective way to lift your computer off the floor and help remove less debris.

How to organize your PC’s storage units

If you haven’t audited all the software installed on your computer in a while, the best place to start is in Task Manager. This is where you can see how much of your computer resources is dedicating to specific processes. Since everyone will have different software installed on their PCs, it’s difficult to give general recommendations, but using Task Manager you can get an idea of ​​the applications that might be slowing your computer down. For most people, there will be two main culprits: bloatware and antivirus software. If you bought your PC from a system integrator like Dell, it will almost certainly include software that your computer doesn’t need to run. So, you can safely uninstall these apps to improve performance and save space. this next tip may be controversial to some, but I believe as long as you avoid clicking on vague links and stay away from the dark corners of the Internet, Windows Defender is all you need to protect your computer from most of the malware out there. Although there are good antivirus programs like Bitdefender and Malwarebytes, most are very expensive for what they offer and will only slow down your computer. If you are not comfortable uninstalling your antivirus software, leave it on your computer. While in the task manager, you will also want to click on the “Startup” tab to see what programs your computer is starting when you turn it on. you can accelerate up this process simply by limiting this list to as few applications as possible. As for the actual process of deleting any software you don’t need, always uninstall Control Panel programs as this will leave minimal leftovers when all is said and done. If you’ve been using Windows for a while, you’ll have the wrong files, folders, and registry entries everywhere. It is possible to separate them manually, but doing so can be time-consuming. Therefore, we recommend using a program like Iolo System Mechanic or CleanMy PC to complete a deep clean of your system. If you have mechanical drives installed on your computer, it’s a good idea to get into the habit of defragmenting them regularly. First, launch the integrated Defrag & Optimize Drives application and click the “Optimize” button button. Depending on the size of your hard drive, this process may take a while. Do not defrag your SSDs as you will only shorten their lifespan for little or no performance improvement.

How to organize your apps, tabs and other windows

Say what you will about Windows 10, but the fact is, it comes with some of the best window management tools built into an operating system. You don’t need to download any additional software to organize your desktop, but there are some settings you can tweak to get even more of its unique Snap functionality. As you may already know, you can press Windows and Tab keys at the same time to bring up up the Task View panel. This is where you can add additional virtual desktops. If you’re not already using virtual desktops, they’re great for organizing your active windows so you don’t have to constantly rearrange them when you’re trying to find a specific one. You can quickly press the Windows key, Ctrl, and the left or right arrow keys to move between desktops. But to make things even simpler, go to the Settings app and the Multitasking section of the System menu. Under the heading “Virtual Desktops”, change both settings to “All Desktops”. Now you can use the Alt-Tab shortcut or the taskbar to switch to any application on any desktop. When it comes to changing your tabs, a lot of it will depend on the browser you use. But as a decent starting point, all the most popular ones include a feature that allows to fix guides. I use this to keep the sites I visit most often during a workday (in my case Gmail, Trello and Google Drive) open all the time and at the top of my tab bar. That way, these guides never get lost among the countless other sites I may have opened for a story I’m writing. Also, in the case of Brave, the browser I use, I can use some keyboard shortcuts to get to these tabs quickly.

Final note

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