What do you think of when you hear the phrase “routine maintenance.” For most people, it immediately conjures images of auto shops, tire pressure, and oil changes. It’s just one of the things that comes with owning a vehicle, right? Every 3-6 months, your trusty steeds heads to the car doctor for a checkup. You might be surprised to learn that computers are no different. Okay, sure, that HP Pavilion won’t ever need its radiator flushed, but just like the cars we drive every day, it does require regular maintenance of its own.
A computer is a big investment for any business. These days, it’s where most of our work happens. But without proper upkeep, you put your productivity at risk. Downtime is a headache just waiting to happen! We know that’s something you don’t want, so here’s how you can protect your investment, and always ensure your technology is performing at its best.
Run Antivirus Software
A big part of any computer maintenance routine is making sure your virus definitions are current. You won’t find these on Merriam-Webster. To get the most recent definitions, you have to update your antivirus and malware software — preferably at least once a week. Once you’ve done that, run a full-system scan to confirm that no nasty bits of code are hiding out in your files. Viruses, trojans, and malware, oh my!
Update Your OS
In our books, Patch Tuesday should really be an unofficial holiday. What is it? We’re so glad you asked! It’s when Microsoft releases its newest batch of security patches, which takes place on the second Tuesday of each month. We know it’s no Fourth of July or Arbor Day, but it’s still an important day for the health of your computer. Keep your system in tip-top shape by running Windows Updates once a week, and by celebrating Patch Tuesday alongside us.
Ensure Mission Critical Software is Up to Date
Just as important as updating your operating system is keeping your third-party software current. These days, companies release updates fairly frequently. While it might seem like overkill at times, it’s vital you stay on top of them, as they often contain critical security patches. If you get behind, you run the risk of a hacker finding a hole to exploit. Just as bad, you risk bugs that could lead to a loss of data.
Give Your Hard Drive a Thorough Cleaning
It’s only three easy steps to achieve a clean hard drive. The first is to delete any old and unused files. Not only will this be good for you (less files to comb through), but it will keep your hard drive from getting too bloated. Free space is an essential component of a healthy HDD, so to achieve this you can also run disk cleanup. Doing so will remove temporary files, file fragments, browsing history, cookies, log files, system caches, application data, empty your recycle bin, and clear out unnecessary data. Finally, uninstall any unused programs. If it’s not helping you do your work, or isn’t important to the system, you probably don’t need it.
Do a Complete Data Backup
Your data is the beating heart of your company. Without it, your business will come to a standstill. For proof, look no further than companies who’ve had their hands tied with ransomware. Loss of data equals downtime, which is a headache that will quickly eat into your profits. Perform a full system backup once a week.
Evict Any Dust Bunnies
Less cute (and far more allergenic) than the furry critter they’re name after, without proper control dust bunnies can quickly choke a computer’s air vents. If your computer’s air vents are blocked it’s liable to overheat, which will slow its performance and make it more difficult for you to meet that important deadline.
Routine computer maintenance is a key part of keeping your business running smoothly. If left untouched, you risk so much more than a broken device. You risk a breakdown of productivity, and all the headaches that spiral out of your workers falling behind.
Contact JNT Tek today for ways we can help automate your maintenance and backup plans.