10 Things Every Student Should Know About Computer Maintenance

No matter what major, minor, or study field – students without computers are hard to find. From online classes, homework, or project tracking, computers are a powerful tool here to help students thrive. Like the majority of things in life, computers require regular maintenance to keep them healthy and running.

The good news is that computer maintenance is a relatively simple and short process. A general rule of thumb is to dedicate at least half an hour weekly to checking different maintenance categories and how well they’re performing. And don’t worry, it’s painless and quick once you learn what to look for. 

Generally speaking, there are three main categories to check for, and they are your computer:

  • hardware;
  • software;
  • file organization.

You may think to yourself, “Why care so much for my PC?” Well, just remember all the help it’s selflessly given, as well as its incredible apps and services. 

One of those is definitely this professional proofreading service! It helps you have that peace of mind that your paper will be grammatically correct when you submit it to be reviewed. Professionals check your spelling, punctuation, consistency, and so much more. Make sure to check it out!

Now, let’s get into 10 things that you as a student should know about keeping your PC healthy and happy!

Hardware

Hardware is that part of your computer that first comes to mind when you think of the word. Maybe your laptop, keyboard, mouse, or monitor. Essentially, hardware is made up of physical computer parts and components.

Clean, Dust, Wipe!

An essential part of PC maintenance is keeping it as clean as you can. This not only ensures that shiny, pristine look, but it’s extremely important for achieving seamless performance. 

Clean the monitor, keyboard, mouse, and any other part that you’re using. A great piece of advice is to use special wet wipes for computer cleaning. But if you don’t have any, don’t panic. A simple lint-free cotton cloth would do. Remember not to spray the surfaces directly!

Source: https://unsplash.com/photos/jiVeo0i1EB4

Cool It Down!

All PCs tend to overheat, especially if we run a heavy program. Make sure from time to time that the temperature is not overwhelmingly high. Tech scientists would suggest keeping it below 140°F (60°C). 

If you don’t have a thermometer nearby, just use the “touch test,” and if it’s too hot for your hand, it’s time to act. Try turning it off for a while, or close some tasks in the background. If the problem persists, ask your tech major roommate to give it a look.

Pull the Plug!

One of the best ways to ensure the health of your laptop’s battery is to keep your device unplugged once it’s charged. Plug it back only when the battery drains to 20% or lower. 

By doing so, you’ll prolong your laptop’s battery, as well as the potential costs of replacing one. Two birds with one stone!

Protect!

If you have a laptop, you’re probably aware of how easily it may stain, bruise, or dent. Investing in a high-quality protecting case is a way to ensure your laptop will not only live longer – but thrive while it’s at it.

Here are a few ideas on how to protect your portable buddy while you’re on the go:

  • laptop messenger bags
  • skins
  • hardshell snap-on covers
  • sleeves
  • screen protectors.

Software

Computer software is made up of all the things you can’t really touch or directly see. It’s your operating system (Windows or Mac), apps, and other complicated behind the scene processes. How can you keep those in line?

Get Rid of Viruses!

Computer viruses are a severe threat to the modern world. Luckily, your laptop or PC has to have already installed and running antivirus software. Make sure to set it to check for potential threats and run a full scan every week or so.

If you’re not getting the results you want, there are plenty of other free options for you to try out. Oh, and if you’re using unknown Wi-Fi networks, install a VPN, just in case.

Update!

It’s an unwritten rule to ignore the software update popup, but here’s the thing. It’s more valuable than you think – it’s a crucial step in helping your operating system run smoothly and effectively. You can either check for updates regularly or simply set an automatic installation.

You can also set active hours during which the software won’t automatically update. It’s to prevent possible disturbance it may cause by doing so. Don’t forget to update your antivirus program regularly, too!

Back up!

Levels of frustration you can reach when files on your computer simply vanish for whatever reason are astronomical. This one is more than important to keep in mind when regularly checking your computer’s health – back it up.

There are a few methods to do this. Use a drive or cloud storage, or an external hard drive, to perform regular backups. Safely check and backup all work docs, homework, photos and videos, and even music and movies. 

You’ll not only have more space for the operating system, but when something does happen, you’ll be able to retrieve it safely. Another win-win!

Organize!

We all know that dreadful feeling of trying to find a certain file, but it seems to be mixed with last year’s high school graduation folder or even 2010 hits. Or sometimes, we can’t let go of some files that end up eating up our storage. Let’s see what you can do about it.

Having a crowded desktop is a great way to slow your machine down. Instead, try creating folders with generalized topics of your files. For example, one could be for college projects, a different one for homework, and make sure to have one for your media.

This will be helpful with both searching for, as well as deleting files. Remember, folders are a way to go!

Source: https://unsplash.com/photos/hXrPSgGFpqQ

Delete!

Deleting unnecessary files from your computer is a proven way to help it run more smoothly. You can delete programs you’ve installed in the past but don’t use anymore. 

With that, you can remove temporary internet files by clearing your cache. In other words, deleting your browser’s cookies!

Empty Out the Bin!

Recycle bin gives one last chance to decide whether you’ve made the right decision by deleting that file. This is great, but if you leave it filled up for a long time, it may be too much for your PC to bear.

That can be a problem for your hard drive and cause more problems. So make sure to empty it from time to time and give your machine some breathing space!

What to Take Away

Once a week, devote some time to your tech friend, ensuring it’s working to its highest potential. Check that it’s clean, orderly, and free of viruses, as well as up-to-date, protected, and cool to touch!

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