Regardless how careful you are, you still need to perform some maintenance tasks for your Windows operating system at least once in a while. However, you might unknowingly make some common Windows maintenance mistakes.
Things have changed with Windows 10, and other recent versions, so here’s what you need to know.
6 Windows maintenance mistakes and how to fix them
These Windows maintenance mistakes are among the most common ones. Some of them might slow down your system while other tasks have no effect whatsoever which means that performing them is just wasted time.
1. Allowing any app to run at startup
There are many applications that are great to have running in the background but the truth is, each of us actually uses just a few of those. Having too many apps that automatically start when you turn on your computer can significantly slow down the boot time.
It’s a good idea to revise the list of startup items once in a while and disable the apps you don’t need. To do this, hit the famous Ctrl + Alt + Del key combination, select Task Manager and in Advanced view go to the Startup tab.
2. Cleaning the Registry
I’m sure you’ve seen at least one registry cleaning software claiming it can help optimize your system’s registry and give your PC a performance boost in the process. The truth is, cleaning the registry doesn’t have any kind of noticeable positive or negative impact on your system’s performance.
Of course, if the software that boasts its amazing registry cleaning capabilities is paid, they’ll make even more promises. You can certainly try some free registry cleaners just to see for yourself your OS will run just as well with or without them. However, they’re definitely not worth the money. You might also want to perform a registry backup before using any of these tools. Some of them can be overzealous when cleaning the registry and it’s always good to have a working restore point before trying any of them.
3. Ignoring Windows updates
Not all maintenance-related tasks are about cleaning and optimizing the system. Ensuring your Windows gets the latest updates also falls into this category.
While Windows does let you manage updates, you shouldn’t completely disable or ignore them. Even if you’re not interested in having the newest features, updates also contain security fixes that patch up vulnerabilities which is why they’re important for everyone.
4. Not using Automatic Cleaning
Windows 10 has plenty of built-in tools that perform automatic cleaning. The more important ones are Storage Sense and the disk defragmenter tool.
Open Settings and go to System -> Storage and make sure the Storage Sense option is enabled. You can further customize it by clicking on the “Change how we free up space” link. You can even use the “Clean now” button to reclaim some storage space right away.
Windows 10 also has a Defragment and Optimize Drives app which you can access by typing “defrag” in the Start menu. This app will automatically defragment HDDs and optimize SSDs (since SSDs do not need defragmentation). It’s a good idea to launch the tool and make sure the “Scheduled optimization” option is enabled.
5. Not backing up your data
Any computer user should regularly backup their important files and documents. While there are plenty of third-party tools to choose from, Windows 10 has several backup options which you can try.
Go to Settings -> Update & Security – > Backup to view and customize available backup options.
6. Ignoring physical maintenance
Your CPU has a thin coat of thermal paste applied which allows it to evacuate heat properly. Over time PCs accumulate dust and too much buildup can lead to overheating. These are just a few examples of problems that can occur when physical maintenance is ignored.
My point is, that hardware maintenance is just as important as software maintenance. Even if you don’t know how to open and clean your PC by yourself, you can easily find a trained technician to do it for you.
As you can see, these Windows maintenance mistakes can have a huge impact on both your PC’s performance and lifespan. They’re very easy to fix and definitely worth the effort – this way you’ll run into fewer problems with every day use and experience much less hardware malfunctions.