more spaceHow to.....on my PC (1)

Nothing more annoying than a PC that won't work well - Try some of these tips! They are all used by (iwmPOP) on a regular basis,  so he KNOWS that they work! I'm not making apologies for these simple tips in the eyes of knowledgable PC users because I know there are many, many people out there who AREN'T knowledgable!

The list will be added to over the coming periods, so have a look in now and then! Even better, subscribe to this Blog Site to get easier access to individual articles (see "subscribe to this Blog" on the Blog Site) 

 Nowadays Computers are being produced and sold with ever increasing "Hard Disc" space. It's not uncommon to find PC's with 500GB's of Hard Disk space. For the average user, such amounts are not really required - to give you an idea, my own equipment is old, old, old, and I have a total of 28GB's of hard disk space, spread over 2 Computers and 2 USB keys! I do a lot of work on the Net, and this has to be prepared and saved somewhere!

Of course, CD-RW's, ZIP Cassettes, even the old fashioned "floppies" are other sources of storage space, but with the arrival of USB keys, small, unobtrusive (fits in a pocket easily) becoming less and less pricey, and bigger and bigger in volume (I saw one for sale the other day with 8GB's of space - BIGGER than my oldest PC - at 14euros! Imagine, I could transfer EVERYTHING I've got on one PC to this thing, put it into my pocket, and walk away without being overloaded!

The problem is that LARGE Hard Disk space (normally referred to as "C" Disk ) generally leads people to NOT cleaning up their PC's, which results, in turn, to a cluttered and messy PC, therefore liable to take longer to find and open a particular file, making the user "irritable, tired and ready for divorce!"

There are two ways you can make it easier for your PC and therefore for yourself, simple and which should be done regularly. Your PC will thank you, and become a GP1 star on the Internet courses!

First and foremost (so you know where you are) open "My Computer" go to the disk you want to clean up, and note how much space is left. This is so you can determine just what immense amounts you will have gained at the end! 

Do these things in the order given or you will be losing time defragmenting files you may delete later....! 

1. DISK CLEANUP: This is another simple, even if possibly lengthy procedure. Follow the steps above for Defragmenting, When you arrive on the SYSTEM TOOLS menu, click DISK CLEANUP. A short wait, and a window bar will open, either starting the cleanup immediately, or asking you which DRIVE you want to clean up. Click on "C DISK" or on the letter which controls your Hard Disk (sometimes these are changed from A - Z Drive, but you should be aware which drive letter represents your Hard Drive. If you don't, then go to "My Computer" and note down the drives listed. Your Main PC Hard Disk will probably be the largest one (the one with most space available to maximum. Just hover with the mouse over each disk in turn). Select the disk concerned and click OK - the cleanup will start.  

IF THIS IS THE FIRST TIME, THE PROCEDURE CAN TAKE A LONG TIME - but afterwards, if you do it regularly (say once a month or so) then it takes a couple of minutes only!

When the cleanup is finished, a window will open giving you further choices to gain/win Disk space. 

By clicking on the appropriate boxes you can clean up Windows programmes (like Internet Explorer/Outlook/Games etc..) - Installed Programmes (a list opens and you can take off programmes you never use and probably didn't even know were there!) - System Restore (this is the most interesting - see Tip on "System Restore" later on this page). When you have finished, click on OK and a box will open to ask you if you "really want to perform the actions" - Click yes and wait!

After the actions have been performed, the screen will be your normal "desktop".

Now for the good news - Go to  "Start"-"My Computer" - hover the mouse over the disks cleaned up, and note the AMAZING recuperation of Disk space - FREE - Well done!

The first time I did this, I recuperated 2.6GB's on a PC of only 7.9GB's total space, and almost 5GB's on another PC of 19GB's total, and both PC's worked quicker and more efficiently. The reason is simple - if your discs are cluttered, your PC takes more time to search what you are looking for, and YOU get bored...and irritated!

2. DEFRAGMENTING: Sounds frightening, doesn't it..! Please don't defragment me, please, please, please...! But yes, you MUST! Except - you can ask in advance if you need to! Click START - Click ALL PROGRAMMES - Go to ACCESSORIES - Click on SYSTEM TOOLS - Click on DISK DEFRAGMENTER - When the page opens, you'll find a little box marked "ANALYSE" - click on this and wait. The programme will analyse your Hard Disk, and if it is really cluttered, then the answer will come up on the screen - "You need to Defragment this Disk" - If you don't need to defragment, it will tell you so as well, and you can then decide to defrag or not.

IMPORTANT - If you've NEVER done this before, then each step may take quite a long time to perform, even up to several HOURS! That just shows you what a state of neglect you've allowed to install itself!


SYSTEM RESTORE: This is (by default - in other words if YOU haven't changed the settings) AUTOMATIC!

Every time you change something on your PC System (add or remove programmes/download items/create items/store or delete items etc..) your PC stores a "restore point" so that if a problem comes up with the new changes, you can always return to the previous point. This obviously takes up space on your Disks, and if your PC is working well (apart possibly from being slow, as usual) then you can happily delete all restore points apart from the last one!

This can be done in various ways, but the easiest is as described above. Simply click on the "more options" after running Disk Cleanup and click on the box restore points and follow the instructions.


It is important to realise that in general, a PC will NOT allow you to be an total idiot and delete everything without asking you at least once, sometimes 2 or 3 times if you REALLY want to take the actions requested! It CAN happen, of course, but it is rare.

It is also important to know that when you delete a programme/file or whatever, certain files may be kept on the memory in your PC, taking up space. This is normal, but sometimes annoying! Internet "Temporary" files are particularly annoying, but if you are on the Internet, you can always run a programme such as "CCleaner" (it is free - use your search organ to locate it on the Web and download/install it on your PC) - or go to where you will find a link to get your hands on this programme!

Run it after having done the checks in 1) and 2) above. You will again be amazed to see how much disk space you can get back to use for other things, more important!

AND - don't forget to empty the BIN - you do at home, so why not on the PC?

Well - that was a start! More tips will be added, from time to time, so keep looking in..!

If you have a problem, let me know, and I'll try to find a solution for you!