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Thursday, August 2, 2007

Savvy Fix for Slow PCs

Not again. Your computer is going sooooo slooooow that you have time to make yourself a TV dinner, maybe a latte and keep an eye on Jimmy Kimmel before anything happens.

I found myself in just this kind of situation with my computer. I started thinking that it might be time for us to break up. When I started pricing new computers, I found several that were almost the same as mine, though half the price of what I paid 3 years ago. I was distressed. After just 3 years, I'm just not ready for another computer breakup.

My motto is, "Let it be little." Nothing more than a 12.1 inch screen will do for me. The computer that I really want is a little more than I can afford right now. I have my eye on one that doubles as a tablet and has a built in webcam. Fun! Unfortunately, these computers require a little bit more of an investment than I can afford right now. So I began to look at ways I could save my relationship with my computer.

There are alot of Geek Squads and computer programs that are out there to sell things to you. Your computer can already do some of those things without making a single purchase or breaking your bank by taking it to the Geek Squad. I learned these things from my favorite computer Savvy geek, my brother. In a way, I am passing his Savvy on to you, but I have made it my own. And you can too!!!

To make my computer run faster, I performed two functions with my computer; Disk Cleanup and Disk Defragmenter. Take a deep breath! If you have Windows on your PC, you can do this. Mac users are on their own.

Disk Cleanup

What it does:

Disk Cleanup performes a series of functions that need to be perfomed periodically. It will delete files you no longer use (old versions of present software) Temporary Internet Files, Cookies and empty your Recycle Bin.

How you find it:
Click on Start, then All Programs, then System Tools, then Disk Cleanup.

This may take awhile. Take the opportunity to take the dog for a walk and strech your legs, feed the dog or play with your cat.

After you have completed Disk Cleanup, you are ready for the next part.

Disk Defragmenter

What it does:
The Disk Defragmenter acts like a little librarian inside you hard drive. As you delete files, folders and programs it leaves blank spaces on you disk. When you install something new, it finds the first space the computer thinks it will fit, skipping over some empty spaces so that it is able to fit all of it. The Disk Defragmenter relocates files so that they are closer together on your hard disk. This makes search and retrieval times faster since everything is organized.

How you find it:
Click on Start, then All Programs, then System Tools, then Disk Defragmenter. (Right below Disk Cleanup).

The Disk Defragmenter may take hours if you have not done it. You may want to do this overnight or some block of time when you really won't need your computer. Take this opportunity to get out of the house. You spend waaaay too much time with your computer anyway. Go out to dinner with your husband, boyfriend, friend or your roommate. When you come back it might be done.

Voila! A much better behaved computer for a grand total of $0!!!!! My gift to you! Not only that, you get to feel Savvy for having done it yourself.

(Though pricing computers I did see lots of single guys....)

For more practical advice:
Financial Savvy for the Young, Christian and Clueless

(You don't have to be a Christian to appreciate it, though.)

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