Computer Maintainance Tips

I am a student with a 4-year old laptop that was bought during a time when the unit was low to mid-range (definitely state of the art). For four years, this laptop (that has no name), has been my loyal companion through a billion hours of coursework. Unfortunately, maybe due to age, misuse or generally bad technology (as compared to now), I've had several problems with this laptop, including but not limited to:

  • low battery life
  • overheating
  • slowness


Since I cannot afford other gadgets such as tablets, much less a new laptop, I've had to figure out ways to care for my laptop. Hopefully, it'll last another 4 years. Some tips I've found that help preserve my laptop:

  • Do not overcharge your battery. As with all gadgets, once it reaches high 90s, unplug it. You should also allow your battery to drain, so don't start charging until the battery is low.
  • Use a cooling fan. Additionally, make sure that air can circulate underneath the laptop. Unfortunately, my cooling fan is not enough: I have to use a real electric fan and make it face my laptop to keep the temperature down.
  • Make sure your laptop is well-wrapped during transport. You never know when an accident could happen.
  • As much as possible, let your laptop rest. If you're not using it, shut it down or at least put it on standby. Make sure that when you let your laptop idle, it automatically engages a low-powered screen-saver or goes to sleep on its own.
  • Clean your laptop regularly. You can use special wipes to wipe down laptop screens and keyboards. Make sure that your computer is turned off while cleaning.
  • Protect everything. Always have anti-virus software and scan everything that enters your PC. Don't click anything without scanning.
  • Keep your e-space neat by deleting unnecessary files and defragmenting regularly. Don't allow your computer to enter low memory territory as it makes them run slower.


Are there any other things that should be done? Hmmm....I can't think of anymore right now, but I can stress that it's important to be prepared for the worst. Thus:

  • Back-up! Use an external drive of some sort to back-up your files. If possible, have at least 2 just in case one of the hard drives fail.

There are enough horror stories as it is about unsaved files, natural disasters (such as drink spills) and even theft! Keep your back-up(s) and laptop in different places if possible.

Let's hope my laptop and yours lasts a long time.

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