PC maintenance

6 essential ways to tackle DIY PC maintenance

Computer maintenance plays an important role in a business’s success.

And yet, many companies completely fail to train their employees to follow basic DIY PC maintenance tips. (What a waste!)

If you teach your employees to use these 5 simple techniques, you’ll prolong the life of every device in your office, improve your productivity, and make it significantly harder for hackers to mess with your data.

“Owning a computer is fun, but you should take the time to perform some basic maintenance to make sure it runs at its best. Otherwise, the few minutes you save here and there could result in hours of unnecessary work in the future.” – MakeUseOf

Clear your browser’s cache

When you visit a website, your browser downloads small pieces of information called cookies. The next time you visit the website, your browser’s cookies will remember that information. Generally, this is a good thing. That’s why your log-in information, name, address and even whether you have items in a shopping cart automatically pop up.

Your browser’s cache also collects bits of information that help websites load more quickly. The browser may store images, buttons and other features. Once the browser has this information in its cache, it doesn’t need to send as many requests to the website’s server. Instead, it uses the information that it already has.

All of that makes using the internet faster.

But over time, the cache can collect so much information that it has a negative effect on performance. Clearing your browser cache periodically will help ensure that your internet connection works as efficiently as possible.

“Clearing your cache and cookies can often be a simple fix for some common web performance issues.” – TechRepublic

Install software updates

When you teach your employees about the most important tips to keep your business’s network healthy, make sure you tell them to install software updates when they’re available. Those updates are important. It’s not okay to ignore them.

Update antivirus software

Cybercriminals have several devious ways of cracking your system. Some of their favorite tactics include:

  • Ransomware that holds your data hostage
  • Ad fraud malware that clicks on advertisements without your knowledge
  • Botnets that run in your computer’s background

In fact, ransomware makes up 66 percent of exploits from 2016.

Fortunately, you can prevent most of these attacks by keeping your anti-virus software updated. Hackers are always building new exploits. Without the latest patches for your anti-virus software, cybercriminals will find it easy to infect your system.

“The idea that antivirus software is only necessary for irresponsible Windows users is a myth, and a dangerous one to spread.” – How-To Geek

Keep your computer’s fans clean

Computer processors generate a lot of heat. That’s why your computer has fans.

A PC’s fans prevent processors, graphics cards, audio cards and other components from overheating. Without a fan blowing a cool breeze through your computer’s interior, things can quickly get hot enough to damage all those sensitive connections.

Unfortunately, your office’s indoor air carries a lot of dust, dirt and other debris that can clog fans. Since dirty fans can’t do their jobs well, you need to clean them to protect your computer and other devices.

Sure, this kind of computer maintenance is little more than high-tech janitorial work. But if you don’t get the janitorial tech work done, your computer will suffer.

“Spring cleaning your system [like cleaning your PC’s fans] isn’t hard to do, but it’s critical to your system’s longevity . . .” – Lifehacker

Have employees report all computer problems

If you don’t document computer and network problems, then you don’t know whether you have a healthy system. Yes, every problem.

A ticket-based system will make it easy for employees to report problems as they encounter them. If you have a really small business, you can get away with using email to track issues. But we don’t recommend it. And actual ticketing system is much better.

When you know what issues to address, it’s far easier to improve the health of your network and individual devices.

Backup data at the end of the day

Before shutting down their computers for the day, your employees should save files to a remote location. Depending on your needs, your business may want to backup data in the cloud or on local servers.

Regardless of which option you choose, backing up your data should be a daily part of your disaster recovery plan.

If you feel like you need more information about DIY PC maintenance, contact your IT support provider for further advice.

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