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In order to keep your computer in peak operating condition, be sure to complete the recommended processes below as frequently as directed. You may do so more often, but it should not be necessary for most users.

Scroll to the bottom of this page to find links to tutorials and cheatsheets with more detailed instructions for the processes mentioned below.


How often?

How do I to do it?

Empty Recycle Bin
Weekly or more
· Right click on Recycle Bin à Empty Recycle Bin
Back Up Schoolwork
Weekly or more
1. Close all files and applications.
2. Make sure your school-related files are stored in organized folders.
3. Right click on the folder you wish to back up à Navigate to your user volume on the server (Example: Your folder on the H drive à Right click inside the folder à Paste)
Delete any duplicate folders/files so that multiple copies aren’t stored on the server.
Note: Server storage space is limited. You may need to delete server contents before backing up from your harddrive.
Back Up Personal Data
Monthly or more
Personal data can be backed up using the following methods:
· Email to yourself (using a non-school email account) – best for temporary storage
· Flash drive (best for data transfer to home computer)
· CD/DVD (burn copies for archival purposes)
· External hard drive or online storage service (for use on multiple computers; generally good for long-term storage)
Install Windows Updates
Whenever available and time permits (Note: it’s best to do this when you’re not in a hurry because some of these updates can take 30+ minutes to download and install; most require reboot)
Click on the yellow shield in your right taskbar to automatically install or…

Start à Programs à Windows Update à Select Express Update
  • Update

  • Scan

· At least once per week

· Ideally, once per month or when computer seems slow or virus is suspected

· Right click on the Panda icon and Update

· Right click Panda à Full Scan
Can take 3+ hours to fully scan

Do not use your machine while this process is running.

For more detailed instructions, go to the Panda Website.
Windows Defender
Monthly or more
1. Start à Programs à Windows Defender
2. Scan à Full Scan
Can take 1-3 hours to fully scan
Disk Clean-up
Monthly, do before Defragmenting
1. Start à Programs à Accessories à System Tools à Disk Cleanup (allow to run)
2. To make sure you don’t delete anything you may need, consult instructions on the website for what you can/can’t delete. Generally ok to check:
  • Downloaded program files
  • Temporary Internet Files
  • Offline Webpages
  • MS Office Temporary Files
  • MS Error Reporting Temporary Files
  • Recycle Bin
  • Temporary Files
  • WebClient/Publisher Temporary Files
  • Office Setup Files
  • Compress Old Files
3. Click OK
May take 5-10 minutes to complete

Disk Defragment
Monthly or when machine feels slow
1. Start à Programs à Accessories à System Tools à Disk Defragmenter
2. Click Defragment
3. Allow to run
May 15-45 minutes to complete, depending upon how frequently you run it
Do not use your machine while this process is running.
Calibrate Stylus
(tablets only)
When new computer is received
When computer is reimaged
When calibration seems off (stylus doesn’t seem to be hitting the right spot)
1. Start à Control Panels à Printers and Other Hardware à Tablet and Pen Settings à Calibration
2. Do both Portrait and Landscape
3. Apply
Deauthorize iTunes Account
Whenever your computer is reimaged or at the end of the school year
1. Launch iTunes
2. In main menu… Store à Deauthorize Computer à Enter user name and password à Deauthorize
Note: You’ll need to authorize machine before playing music from your account.
Clean Computer
Weekly or when it appears grungy next to another computer
Use a dry or barely dampened towel that is clean, soft, and lint-free (something safe for eyeglass lenses) or Windex Wipes.
Gently wipe away dust/grime.
Be cautious not to worsen any issues by pushing dirt into crevices or between keys.
Note: for keyboard area or areas near switches/buttons, shut down computer first.

Here are some cheat sheets and tutorials to help you keep your PC running smoothly.