In a previous post I talked about how to keep the outside of your computer and the other computer components clean – in this post I’ll discuss briefly how to take care of the inside of your computer.
Safeguarding Against Malware
Malware is any type of software that is designed to damage your computer or gain unauthorized access to your personal information. It includes things like viruses, worms, Trojan horses and spyware. Most malware is distributed over the Internet and is often bundled with other software.
The best way to guard against malware is to install anti-virus software on your computer. I personally use McAfee Anti-Virus Software on my computer, I’ve also used Norton’s in the past and both of these are very good. However both of those cost money – if you’re on a budget though, there are some very good free options. These include AVG and Avast. No matter which type of anti-virus software you use, make sure you update it often so your computer can stay safeguarded against all viruses.
Another way to safeguard against malware is to use good common sense – if you receive an email that looks suspicious, don’t open it. Mark it as spam, or just delete it.
Back up Important Files
When you work from home, it’s important to keep all your important information backed up – this includes any files you need for work, such as drafts of articles eBooks you’re writing. You can either use an external hard drive to do this, or a website like Google Drive. You can also use online backup services like Mozy, Carbonite or Box. One drawback to these services is that the initial back up can be slow – it may even take days to upload if you have a lot of files. However once the first backup is complete, subsequent backups won’t take as long.
Other maintenance tips
In addition to the maintenance tips I’ve provided, here are a few others:
- Delete files you no longer need.
- Run the disk defragmenter – If you’re not familiar with the Disk Defragmenter, if you have Windows 7, you can find it by clicking your Start Menu and going to “Accessories,” then “System Tools,” then clicking on “Disk Defragmenter.” The disk defragmenter scans the files in your hard drive and rearranges them so it can read them faster.
- Run a disk cleanup – this is different from scanning your computer for viruses – the Disk Cleanup utility scans your computer for files that can be deleted, such as temporary files. If you have Windows 7, you can find the Disk Cleanup Utility by going to “Accessories,” “System Tools,” then selecting “Disk Cleanup.”
I hope you’ve found these tips helpful. If you have any other tips you’ve used to keep the outside or inside of your computer clean, please feel free to share them.
Judy Wilson says
Safeguarding my computer against malware seems like a really important part of keeping it safe. One of my old computers was attacked by a virus, and after trying to take it off my software I had to replace my PC. It’s good to know that I can get free anti-virus software to protect my laptop. I’ll try to find some free software that will protect my computer.