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How To Clean Up Your Windows C: Hard Drive

Updated on October 6, 2010

Is your computer running slowly? It could be because your hard drive is a mess. No, it's not something that you can see by just looking at your computer, but you can tell that it's the case if your computer is acting up or refusing to act well at all. If you engage in lots of downloading and other online activity ... or simply if you've had your computer for a long period of time and it's gotten regular use ... you probably need to clean up your hard drive.

If you're working with Windows, you should find that cleaning up your hard drive is actually really easy to do. That's because Windows has a bunch of neat little functions that let you clean up that computer just by clicking a few yes and no choices. Here are some of the places you can go on your Windows computer to get that hard drive cleaned up and that computer up and running well again:

  • Uninstall all of the things that you don't use. If you can remember back to when you first got your computer, you probably recall that there were a whole bunch of icons on your desktop for things that you have never even touched. Maybe you deleted those icon shortcuts, but if you've left programs on your computer that you're never going to use, you're taking up space that you don't need to be taking up. Uninstall those programs! It's easy:
  • 1. Go to "Start".
  • 2. Select "control panel".
  • 3. Select "add or remove programs".
  • 4. Select each of the programs that you never use and choose to uninstall them.
  • 5. Go to "add or remove windows components".
  • 6. Perform the same selection and uninstall there.

  • Delete files that you don't need. This doesn't just refer to files that you have put on your computer that you don't want anymore; it also means deleting all of those files that got stored there without you even realizing it. The most common of these are the temporary files. Go to "Start", select "run", type in "%temp%" and then hit "ok". Your temporary files will show up and you can highlight them all and delete them.
  • o Windows instructions (http://www.helpwithwindows.com/WindowsXP/howto-16.html) also say that you can delete any files from your computer that have the follow extensions:
  • § .$$$
  • § .~mp
  • § .000
  • § .bak
  • § .cnt
  • § .dmp
  • § .fts
  • § .gid
  • § .old

  • Make use of the "disk clean up" tool. Windows will help do general clean up your computer without you having to do more than click some buttons. Here's how:
  • 1. Go to "start".
  • 2. Go to "all programs".
  • 3. Select "accessories".
  • 4. Choose "system tools".
  • 5. Select "disk cleanup".

The computer will now do its thing. You can also use the same area of the computer to defragment your computer. Just follow steps one through four from the above instructions and then choose "disk defragmenter" instead of "disk cleanup" and follow the instructions there.

These are the basic things that you can easily do on a regular basis to clean up your Windows hard drive. There's software out there to do more detailed clean up but it's probably not necessary if you keep on top of using the tools that are provided to you with your computer. Like with your physical space, if you keep it clean, it's easier to use. So get to it!

Comments

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  • profile image

    Microsoft 

    6 years ago

    Uninstalling of microsoft - kill computer!

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Spam of Microsoft - Deleting WEBSITE! (by using Java Script and SAVING)

    ************************************************

    :O HEY THIS IS SPAM! :@

    --------------------Contact Us---------------------------------

    Search me as m********@microsoft.com

    ------------------------------------BYE-------------------------

  • mybestreviews profile image

    mybestreviews 

    6 years ago from Tampa Bay, Florida

    Great information and a great hub.

  • profile image

    Phreek 

    6 years ago

    I have an issue with my laptop that disk cleanup isn't helping when I try to defrag my laptop it starts at 52% and I guess its files hidden in my computer how do I get it to defrag at 0%?

  • profile image

    Aj 

    6 years ago

    Thank you for advice

  • profile image

    Trey 

    6 years ago

    Even a computer anti-nerd (aka - doesn't know what I'm doing) managed to follow these steps successfully. Thank you.

  • profile image

    nandy 

    6 years ago

    it was useful....thanx buddy...

  • GmaGoldie profile image

    Kelly Kline Burnett 

    7 years ago from Madison, Wisconsin

    I do the defragment disk all the time but never do this - great help! First time running - Thank you!

  • profile image

    VivekSri 

    8 years ago

    Nice hub it is! Enjoyed your style and meticulous work. Keep posting them for the readers.

  • dannybeerz profile image

    dannybeerz 

    10 years ago from Costa Mesa

    Thanks for the advice. Used that disc cleanup tool for the first time :)

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