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  1. #1
    SitePoint Guru bronze trophy AndrewCooper's Avatar
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    How Often Do You Clean Your PC?

    Well I just cleaned up my PC yesterday to give myself a speed boost and shave off 100GB of unused disk space so I'm happy with that software-wise. Hardware-wise? My whole setup was full of dust! I tolerate it so far, then it becomes unacceptable to work in such an environment and it needs a damn good cleanup! I grabbed the hoover and cleaned up my desk, monitor, keyboard, mouse, speakers, tower, shelf, and floor. Everything is so clean, shiny, and dust-free and I feel all happy and proud of myself

    But how often do you actually clean your PC (software and hardware)? I know they say it's recommended to format your PC every 6 months and so on, but do you do this? Do you clean-up regularly or do you let your work environment clutter up with dust, little bits of food, spilled drink, and all sorts of nasty bacteria infested stuff until it comes to the point where you leave your desk for a bathroom break and your fingers are covered in dust?!

    I don't have my own personal little "PC Cleanup Policy" (sounds cool though doesn't it?) but I think I might set myself one (just in a Word document) that will just be a bullet point list of what I should do and when I should do it, so I can keep on top of things rather than do it when it's really bad. Do you have something similar to this in place already? And is there anything like this in the workplace or do you have cleaners?

    Andrew Cooper

    P.S Please don't post pictures of your filthy work environment! I've just had my breakfast!

  2. #2
    SitePoint Addict NetNerd85's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrewCooper View Post
    But how often do you actually clean your PC (software and hardware)? I know they say it's recommended to format your PC every 6 months and so on, but do you do this?
    When I first installed XP on my PC I had to re-install a few times for numerous reasons but it's been installed for hrmmm, maybe since 2005? It's stayed strong and has been a brilliant computer. The hard drive and everything has been replaced though, so it's not exactly the same as when I started so the drive was cloned. Not sure what affect that really has. I've slowly been cleaning up the folders and files to move it to Vista but that's taking a while.

    My laptop with Vista it definitely needs a re-install, not sure why exactly. I don't expect much from it, I treat it well but it just goes crazy from time to time and slows right down.

    They don't get too dusty, tend to clean it if I open it.

    I get my friend to do all my hardware stuff... and some software stuff... I'm lazy. Too busy with web technologies to care about the other stuff anymore.
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  3. #3
    ✯✯✯ silver trophybronze trophy php_daemon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrewCooper View Post
    I know they say it's recommended to format your PC every 6 months and so on, but do you do this?!
    Really? Outrageous!

    I dust it off once in a while, and run a disk cleanup when it becomes short of space. Other than that, it's pretty much neglected. But a good computer has to cope with that, do its job and take the abuse. It's supposed to work, not to be worked for. It's not some pretty decoration that has to be polished every other day. Argh!
    Saul

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    I manually go in and clean up myself. I don't install software that has no purpose or I will use a few times and never use again, so far so good how PC Clean Policy is scheduled I don't spend hardly any time on keeping it clean and yet it still remains pretty darn clean if I might say so myself, and I know what is associated with what.

    I probably could clean it a little more but I doubt I'd notice anything much from the way it is currently, but my PC Clean Policy didn't come over night it. It took a plan and time to get it organized, I don't think you can just go in or run a program or delete random stuff etc and ZIP everything is clean and organized.

    With Millions of PC users out there there will always be money to be made in cleaning peoples PC out as most people are sloppy with there PC data, that is until cloud computing is in full motion and PC are obsolete or almost if at all (another debate for another subject)

  5. #5
    SitePoint Addict NetNerd85's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by php_daemon
    But a good computer has to cope with that, do its job and take the abuse. It's supposed to work, not to be worked for.
    well said

    Off Topic:


    Quote Originally Posted by SiberianHuskey View Post
    With Millions of PC users out there there will always be money to be made in cleaning peoples PC out as most people are sloppy with there PC data, that is until cloud computing is in full motion and PC are obsolete or almost if at all (another debate for another subject)
    I will never give up my privacy, NEVER! my data is for my eyes only. The cloud? pfft
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  6. #6
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    once every 2 years for me. oh didn't you mean how often the pc cleans me out :P

    I dont know what cloud computing is anymore actually, I gave up because I am still trying to figure out whats wrong with the one on the ground :/

    k@topic. Every once in awhile like 3-4 I check the keyboard and CPU fan outlets. If hte CPU fan exhausts are clogged it gets overheated "heat is bad...mmkay" So I use a small antistatic brush to dust off the holes and windows (you have to get these from computer shops, regular brushes have static on it) . The same brush can be used to dust off the insides once every few weeks (except dont shove it into the circuitry)

    The keyboard spaces are the dirtiest disease carriers as of date. You don't wanna know what grows there if you see it under the microscope >.< So best dust it as often as you can.

    Keeping things clean is way more important than ceaning it. Good sites out there that have DIY techniques on this.

    For software, yeah its really usage based. But I would advise against using 3rd party cleaning programs like registry cleaners et al.

    hope i helped.


    heh

  7. #7
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    I do it when needed. Recently, I open my tower and opened the power unit as well as dismounted the processor to clean it properly. The fan was making a bit of too much noise. Now runs faster. But, hey, the last time I did it, it was 5 years ago. No wonder!

    Regarding software, I only remove it when need, empty the drive when is running out of space, and I defrag about once every 6 months or so... because it needs it. When starts to run really slow, the first thing I do is running some kind of anti-adware/anti-spyware and anti-virus program and after that, I uninstall any software that is not strictly necessary.

    If that doesn't work, I open it and clean the fans with some kind of brush.

  8. #8
    SitePoint Wizard Stomme poes's Avatar
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    I dunno if I've ever cleaned out my computer. I make a copy of my Desktop (regular backup, and it catches the folders with my local-copy of my work), and when there's a new Linux version, I update, and then put the backup on there. Not sure if that counts as cleaning though.


    Off Topic:

    Quote Originally Posted by netnerd
    I will never give up my privacy, NEVER! my data is for my eyes only. The cloud? pfft
    Amen.

  9. #9
    I Love Licorice silver trophybronze trophy Datura's Avatar
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    This is a nice summary about cleaning your PC

    I keep my surroundings clean and as dust free as I can, that avoids problems in the first place.
    Ulrike
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  10. #10
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    It all depends how slow it is working. I almost reinstall it every few years in the beginning but at the end of the lifetime this will become more frquent

  11. #11
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    I used to reformat like once per month (well, I'd just ghost it.) Not anymore; too lazy, it's kinda useless (although, I have been visiting lots of dodgy sites lately and I think I got the computer clap), and my drive image never seemed to update properly (though I had it set to autotrack changes and restoring to a wonky image blows!) I run like 2 TB of space, so cleanup is a nightmare! I let things pile up fiercely, and never worry about space. Just buy a new external, they're dirty cheap these days!

    I let like 30K emails pile up (but 24K were junk - I think. They were in my junk folder. Now they are gone.)
    My place is very, very, very dusty though, so I try to do physical cleaning like every 2 or 3 months. I love to stick the vacuum on the fan and listen to it whir as well!
    Patriotism is the virtue of the vicious.

  12. #12
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    yes BLZ's idea of vacuum is right! But instead of the suck setting you need to use the blow setting and not too strong. (not sure i said it right) :S

  13. #13
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    Does it also help to restore some of the memory that is used up on your PC? All of the web browsers just about crash on me, when I have pages up.

  14. #14
    From space with love silver trophy
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    Back when I had my old Win98 PC I would wipe clean the partition that windows was on and reinstall once a year and also delete any files I knew that I didn't need. Given the choice now i would have separate partitions for windows, my documents, my games (especially given how much drive space (20+GB for some of them) take up and possibly one for my music (set to the same capacity as my ipod).

    I was probably lucky with my old windows pc the last time I opened the case up before getting rid of it, the cpu heatsink was caked up quite well with dust.

    Performance wise, I've had hardly any problems (apart from a bit of lagging when playing gta4).
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrewryMedia View Post
    Does it also help to restore some of the memory that is used up on your PC? All of the web browsers just about crash on me, when I have pages up.
    You can keep your browser running fast by doing one or more of the stuff I do.
    you can google for answers?
    1. Remove plugins or (Browser Helper Objects in IE) that you dont really need.
    2. Clear cache, private Data, cookies and History and everything else in between that your browser can clean. Easiest is to set your browser to clear everything on exit.
    3. Don't visit many heavy flash/2.0 bum sites at the same time.
    4. Clean up your bookmarks (if you can)

    More smaller things are there but these are good for me and keep the browser running fresh and fast. All i can think of from the top of my head.

  16. #16
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    Since I got my laptop, I never had to clean it!

  17. #17
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    I keep my PC fairly clean, although as one guy has told me computers are quite a bad investment, but yet so is most things now. Software has to become more optimized because I know many who have stretched there upgrade time frame by a year or two hoping the hardware will do.

  18. #18
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    Hardware-wise, Every few months or whenever it seems like a good idea, I take my computers out on the patio and blow out the dust using my air compressor and make sure the fans are all working.

    Software I nuke all temp files pretty regularly, but unless a disk is getting full I don't worry about about other software or files much.
    Doug G
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  19. #19
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    (Software)
    I'm a linux user and a developer.. so I try to keep everything nice, clean, and organized. I'll reinstall Linux maybe once every year or so.. just to keep things fresh. Back when I used Windows, I'd make a fresh install every 6/7 months. (Windows is terrible with handling adware.)


    (Hardware)
    I used to clean it almost every month back when I lived in a dorm. Those places are terrible with the dust. (I'd literally have a half inch of dust built up on the bottom of my radiator.) Now, I just get my BlowOff and run it over everything real quick whenever I'm sitting at my computer with nothing better to do. lol
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  20. #20
    Follow: @AlexDawsonUK silver trophybronze trophy AlexDawson's Avatar
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    I use Windows 7 and clean up my PC using CCleaner & TuneUp Utilities once a week, it keeps everything springy and fresh. As for formatting, I tend to-do it once a year as the debris from past installations, removed stuff, temp files, drivers for now un-used hardware (et al) all help crank down the performance of the computer. I don't tend to clean my hardware on the account that I use a laptop (and a good shake and oxygen spray will get that keyboard grime out).

  21. #21
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy Crazybanana's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrewCooper View Post
    I know they say it's recommended to format your PC every 6 months and so on
    This is a joke, right?

    I usually format once a year but sometimes i wait two years before i do it, and clean hardware when it needs to be cleaned - there is no timeframe here. Some months are more "dusty" than others.

    My computers are tools, not a piece of jewellery
    Who's to doom when the judge himself is dragged before the bar


  22. #22
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    I actually clean it when needed. I dont have any specific time or schedule when to do it. If i saw it dirty or slow, I don't have any choice but to clean and fix it.

  23. #23
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    I'm going to clean out my PC as I'm in the middle of moving, you'd be surprised how much crap you throw out that you had kept.

    Off Topic:

    for me there is some emotion to when you live somewhere a loong time

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by BingeSite View Post
    You can keep your browser running fast by doing one or more of the stuff I do.
    you can google for answers?
    1. Remove plugins or (Browser Helper Objects in IE) that you dont really need.
    2. Clear cache, private Data, cookies and History and everything else in between that your browser can clean. Easiest is to set your browser to clear everything on exit.
    3. Don't visit many heavy flash/2.0 bum sites at the same time.
    4. Clean up your bookmarks (if you can)

    More smaller things are there but these are good for me and keep the browser running fresh and fast. All i can think of from the top of my head.

    That's cool. I've been wondering because i can't upload videos anymore to Transformation.com, and I know it's something wrong with my computer, because I was able to do that before, almost 8 months ago

  25. #25
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    I clean my pc every week , i have loads of data in my hard drives so every sunday i scan my pc.


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