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Old 09-05-2008, 12:02 PM   #1
JohnR
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Quick & Dirty How To Clean and Speed Up Your Computer

Lots of people have been asking about some problems with Windows PC computers slowing down lately, spyware, & spam - so I want to throw a quick cheat sheet together on a few things you can do to speed up your systems.
UPDATED Feb 2009

No beyotching on how Linux or MAC does this or that, they have their own issues (though not to the extent of Windows boxes)

First off, absolute #1, no questions asked - HAVE GOOD ANTI VIRUS!!! Don't let your anti-virus expire

Legally, this is even easier at home because you can legally download free Anti-virus programs. Why are some free? They want you to by the more feature rich "PRO" versions.

::::Anti-Virus::::


1) AVG Anti-Virus 9.x ~ my current favorite ~

Download from: http://www.majorgeeks.com/AVG_AntiVi...ion_d886.htmll (current as of 2/25/10)

Vender site & download: http://free.avg.com/

2) Avast: http://majorgeeks.com/Avast_Home_Edition_d1968.html

Yes, there are other Anti-Virus but this is a quick & dirty.

Keep in mind, BUYING anti-virus usually gets a better product with better coverage.

Norton 360 3 User license $10 after $50 rebate: http://frys.com/product/5541610
I'm not big on Norton, it’s a bit of a pig.

::::Quick Check and Cleaning::::

Run Malware Antibytes - quick scan and then a full scan - free for home users: http://www.malwarebytes.org/

Dr Web CureIT - this will do an initial scan for viruses and Trojans, once done, run the complete scan. You may be promoted to move or delete - yes, do it. However, I am not responsible if you remove something important - not likely but conceivable something important is infected.
I DO NOT Take Responsibility for ANY problems you may have with your potentially INFECTED computer

After the initial scan, do a complete scan - it will take a while.

Once this is done:

:::: Defrag Your Hard Drive ::::

Go to Program Files > Accessories > System Tools > Defragment. Even if you run an analyze and it says you don't need it, do it anyway. Run it three times in the first week if you have not run in a while (or never). Do this once a month - bets way to remember is beginning of the month. Weekly is even better.

:::: PATCH PATCH PATCH ::::

Run Windows Update at least once a month OR setup for Automatic Updates.
Beware, on a RARE occasion, a patch from Microsoft can break things. I run updates a little differently for my clients but this offers a minimum reasonable protection.

:::: MEMORY MEMORY MEMORY ::::

If you have between 256 and 512 MB of ram, you will likely run dog slow. Memory is cheap. Upgrade your computer from 1GB to 2GB of RAM. The easiest place to get what you need with reasonable prices is: http://crucial.com/

Memory is EASY to replace but there can be a hiccup on occasion. If it doesn’t work, put the old stuff back in where it came out. Here is a decent video on how to change memory – SPEND the $3 on the anti-static wrist strap!!!

Here is a quick link to a video on how to change RAM:

If your computer is older than 4-5 years, start looking for a new one – Good deals can often be found at Slickdeals.net: http://slickdeals.net/

Last edited by JohnR; 02-26-2010 at 08:52 PM..

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