Whether you are a start up, or have been in business for decades, modern enterprises require the use of computers. Email is an invaluable communication tool, and basic office software makes completing day-to-day business tasks an ease.

Computers have become essential to our everyday lives, but are you looking after your equipment?

Most businesses will opt for Windows powered hardware due to their lower prices and accessibility. Did you know you have a number of basic inbuilt programs to help maintain your machine?

Pointing your mouse towards the start button and navigating your way to All Programs, then to Accessories, and finally System Tools, you have access to a plethora of utilities to keep your machine fresh.

  • Disk Cleanup

Disk Cleanup works by highlighting excess and unnecessary data from your hard drive. It scans junk files dumped by programs, cached Internet pages, your recycle bin etc, and gives you the option to delete from any, or all, of the areas scanned.

  • Navigate your way to the Disk cleanup using the directory above.
  • Let the program calculate how much space it can recover.
  • Tick the boxes from wherever you want to delete the excess.
  • Click ‘OK’ to start the deleting process.

The whole process takes less than a couple of minutes and is a really easy way of gaining back a lot of disk space.

  • Disk Defragmenter

Defragmenting your disk takes slightly longer but helps drastically improve performance. This process involves taking all the data on your disk and storing it in one big chunk. Think of it as if you were baking a cake and you stored all your ingredients in one place rather than scattered all over your kitchen; it’ll make for a much quicker process! Depending on how much data is on your hard drive it can take a few hours, but the benefits are worth it.

  • Open up the disk defragmenter.
  • Click on Defragment disk, it will start analysing disk space and work out what it can and can’t move.
  • Wait until it’s done!
  • Task Manager

The task manager is often a get out of jail card for non-responsive programs that have crashed. You can also use it to speed up your machine though be warned, fiddling with processes you aren’t familiar with can cause system errors so proceed with caution.

Each task carried out by your machine is listed in the task manager. From here you can choose to close any given process depending if you need it or if it using too much processing power and is causing slowdown.

  • Open Task Manager by either right clicking on an empty part of your taskbar and clicking ‘Task manager’, or by pressing ‘Ctrl+Alt+Del’ and clicking it from there.
  • Click the tab labelled ‘Processes’.
  • Find any processes that you are absolutely sure as to what they are (I cannot stress this enough), and click end process with them highlighted to close them.

An example would be say ‘chrome.exe’ which is of course Google Chrome. You might not need this open but it has a habit of staying open in the background.

Regularly performing these scans can help preserve the life of your machine, and increase productivity in the work place. Keeping on top of maintenance for your Windows machine is a simple affair as these tools come preinstalled on every copy of Windows 7, they’re included in later editions of Windows too but most businesses still use the 7th iteration of Windows.

Got any more tips to help with PC performance? Perhaps you have a story about a computer problem you encountered? We’d love to hear about it! Leave them in the comments below!