Keeping your PC in top condition ?

luxgud Posts: 127 Just Starting Out*
edited December 2012 in General
Hello again ..
Earlier today I had a fright, the power trip cut power to my PC for a few seconds and my PC crashed out. When I restarted it, the PC gave me an alarming message about can't start .. will attempt to fix etc, etc. Luckily, it fixed itself and worked .. phew. This made me think about the state of my PC now ie are there corrupted files or whatever in the system.
I was wondering if anybody can recommend any PC System software that help keep you r PCin tip-top condition. A have a few reservations about such software as a few years back I used TweekUi (or something like that) and it corrupted my PC behond use. Maybe I didn't use it correctly but since then I have remained sceptical about such software.
I googled a few things and they all seem to make amazing promises about keeping my system in A1 condition.
Is there anything that you can recommend, ie that you actually use rather than here say. I'd appreciate any input
Thank you.


  • Windows have actually very good tools. In windows 7 right click on the disc you want to check about corrupted files and then choose Properties. Go to the Tools tab and do an error checking. From the same tab you can defrag and backup your disk. I suggest to set automatic defragmentation to speed things up.
    You can also use Registry Cleaning software to keep your registry clean(especially if you often install/delete software).
    And of course it's up to you, not to fill your PC with junk of all kinds. That's the most important.
  • luxgud
    luxgud Posts: 127 Just Starting Out*
    Hi Javier
    Thanks for the tips, I defraged my drive but stopped it after 2 passes - it was taking forever. It stopped at 17% fragmentation. How long is it suposed to take ???
    When it comes to 'junk' I take your point but I am always trying out new software and plugins and so its a natural consequence of this,
    I was also thinking about switching off all the un-necessary processes that are running on the PC etc but I know this can lead to big problems is you are unsure about what your're doing.
    Also I wanted to backup my hard drive (an image) so that I could restore it if I had a crash.
    Finally, can you recommend a registry cleaning application (free is good) ?
  • stbo
    stbo Posts: 61 Enthusiast
    ccleaner - it checks your registry, cleans out temporary files, allows you tune your startup etc - free version available, well worth using.
  • luxgud
    luxgud Posts: 127 Just Starting Out*
    edited December 2012
    ccleaner, I'll check it out - Thanks
  • StormyKnight
    StormyKnight Posts: 2,722 Ambassador
    I'll second the ccleaner. Great program.
  • Ccleaner seems okay. Registry cleaning will help you with the software you're testing.
    You may want to run the defragment overnight. The time depends on the capacity of the drive and it's normal to take that long if it's the first time you run it. But it really helps, especially when you're working with hd video that requires top reading speeds. Imagine that a file is separated in 10 small parts in the hard drive. When opened, the hard drive has to go back and forth searching for the parts of the file. Defragment will put all the parts near each other, minimizing the searching and opening time. Simply explained.
    As I said, there's a backup option. You may try that, or search for other methods. I always back up in bulk, only files I need and not system files etc that can be re installed.
    And of course, if you don't know, do not terminate any procceses!!!
  • luxgud
    luxgud Posts: 127 Just Starting Out*
    Downloaded the free version of ccleaner and it workd very well. I am pleased with this.
    Thanks very much Javier, stbo & Stormy.
  • duffman
    duffman Posts: 235 Enthusiast
    You can also create a restore point prior to installing any new software. Then you if decided you dont like it and uninstall then go back to your previous restore point. As well, you can also create backups of your registery before you install anything new.
  • CCleaner is always a great utility to have around.
    For de-fragmenting the hard drive, I use Auslogics Disk Defrag, which is free and I find it a lot faster than the built in windows version.
    I also use Revo Uninstaller Pro (~$40 but there are similar applications available for free) for installing and uninstalling programs. It keeps track of any changes that are made, and can completely remove any last traces including registry keys. Includes some other tools similar to CCleaner.
    Because I use a lot of processor intensive applications and do a bit of programming, the less potential interference and slow down running in the background, the better. In addition to being careful with what I install, a combination of Microsoft Security Essential and Malwarebytes Anti-Malware to do scans periodically keeps my system clean.
    And the obvious, regularly installing Windows updates.
    I use Acronis True Image for complete disk imaging, and make regular automated backups of the most important files to my NAS (I'm using the included software that came with my NAS, but there are many free or cheap programs for this)
    All in all, I haven't experienced any significant down time using the setup above.
    Of course, different things will work better for different people. But hopefully that gives you some more things to look into :D
  • guitar74
    guitar74 Posts: 506
    If you are always unsure, this is my opionion and nobody dont have to agree. But, when my computer starts acting up, I back up all the files, reformat the HD from scratch, re-install the OS. Great solution. I tried other program and etc, never could get my computer back in right condition, so I reformat the HD.
  • MichaelJames
    MichaelJames Posts: 2,034 Enthusiast
    Yup I disagree with blindly reformatting the computer. Its over kill and maybe a problem that can be solved another way. Computer OS's get updated. Windows 8 has had some minor issues but reformatting won't fix problems... just start you back at square one. One thing that people forget is that when they start downloading things online or through tradition programs... entries get added to the computers registry. My father is 55 and does not listen to his kids on how to avoid computer viruses and bugs. Right now on his computer if you open up internet explorer it defaults to google. Open up a tab and it goes to some BS search engine called Babylon Search. Now I am going through his registry to remove this stuff.
  • SimonKJones
    SimonKJones Posts: 4,448 Enthusiast
    What OS are you using? From Windows Vista onwards I've not encountered slowdown much, if at all. Windows 7 is particularly good at keeping things slick and tidy. The main thing is to not clog it up in the first place.
    CCleaner I'd also recommend, and make sure you're not using any crazy anti-virus/firewall software. Microsoft Security Essentials is really all you need: anything else will cause problems rather than solve them.
    Also, consider an SSD the next time you are looking at upgrades or reinstalling the OS. I recently moved to an SSD for my Windows 7 installation and it's made the biggest non-gaming performance difference I've had for years.