A lot of people have abandoned their desktop computers to switch to the more versatile laptop. But don’t make the mistake of treating it like a desktop PC – that would decrease its efficiency. There are certain things needed to keep it in good shape. Take a look at the following tips to help your laptop perform its’ best.
1. De-load your hard drive
Simply put, the more data you have in your hard drive, the more prone it is to slowing down and crashing, so it’s important to free it up. Remove all files you don’t use regularly, like videos, pictures, music or games. For things you don’t want to permanently delete, save them in an external hard drive instead of keeping them in your laptop.
2. Empty the Recycle Bin habitually
All the junk you delete just settles in the Recycle Bin and takes up space, so be sure to empty it.
3. Erase temp files regularly
Temp files or temporary internet files are automatically saved into your hard drive every time you open a website. That’s more unnecessary junk that hampers performance, so be sure to clear the cache routinely.
4. Uninstall all unused or unnecessary programs
It’s likely your laptop was already loaded with various trial software and shareware when you bought it. All those things occupy space, and you can certainly do away with them. Be sure to uninstall them properly; simply deleting them won’t do. Avoid downloading things you don’t need, like fancy toolbars and previously installed applications.
5. Reduce start-up programs and other applications running in the background
Some programs activate as soon as you start up, like Skype or Quicktime. They use up memory and slow things down, and you don’t need them running each time you switch on your laptop. It isn’t necessary to uninstall them, but just disable them from launching at start-up using the System Configuration utility. Also, open only the programs you will use. You don’t really need media players or instant messengers constantly activated.
[Suggested reading: 4 Laptop Caring Tips to Keep Your Laptop Healthy]
6. Defrag your laptop regularly
Regular defragging releases the hard drive to work more efficiently, as it organizes data to be more accessible. Schedule this at least once every other week.
7. Clean the registry
Through use, clutter accumulates in the computer registry. Without regular maintenance, registry errors can corrupt files and slow down your laptop. It will definitely benefit you to scan the registry with a good Registry Cleaner.
8. Have an effective antivirus and anti-spyware/adware program
Set it to run automatically at least once a week.
9. When in use, keep it cool
A laptop needs to keep well-ventilated, since overheating leads to slower performance and frequent crashing. With this in mind, always use your laptop on a hard surface. Operating it on a soft surface (like your bed) will block the vents and trap the hot air. Get a small laptop table, or just use a hard board.
10. When not in use, shut it down
This rests your laptop and helps to prevent overheating. Be sure it has shut down completely before packing it in your bag. A laptop left on inside the bag accumulates heat, putting its components in danger of melting and corruption. Remember to disconnect all accessories.
11. Maintain the air vents and fan
Inspect and clean the vents habitually, and make sure the fan is functioning properly. Check routinely with a computer technician.
[Read also: How to Properly Clean Your Gadgets]
13. Adjust the power settings
Set the monitor and hard disk to turn off after a few minutes of inactivity. This helps prevent overheating and prolongs the battery.
14. Take good care of the battery
As a rule of thumb, don’t keep the battery plugged into an electrical outlet when not in use. Leaving it plugged-in overcharges it and shortens its life span. Other specific care tips depend on the type of battery you have, so charge and/or drain as prescribed in the user manual.
[Read also: How To Take Care Of Your Laptop Battery]
15. Invest in more memory
Upgrading the RAM will boost speed and performance. It will especially be useful for multimedia applications or serious gaming.
[Read also: How To Upgrade Your Laptop for less than $150]
Even when it comes to electronics, prevention is better than cure. Doing these things will not only maintain your laptop’s condition, but also maximize its utility.
Any tips to help in optimizing laptop performance? Please share in the comments.