Or most of us, our laptops are filled with everything from photos (and plenty of them are double), files, big old files you don’t remember using, music, videos, work, work and more work… 

Not to mention many apps that you haven’t opened after the free trial expired – it is time to clean house. 

Laptops that are filled with old, big and unused files are still going to use memory and power to hold all of that information. 

And, when you need to search for something, the laptop will go through those files, too – making the process take much longer. 

So without taking too much time, who really has a lot of free time to clean up a laptop? Here are things you can do to quickly and efficiently get your laptop back in excellent working order – without the fuss. 

Duplicates

When you take photos, do you take three or four in a row and then never get around to choosing the best one and getting rid of the rest? If that sounds like you, then you could have more duplicates than you know what to do with. 

They take up a lot of space and pretty quickly. 

Most people don’t have the time or the inclination to find the duplicates manually, but there are great software options that can help you find duplicates at speed – and delete them. 

Most of the software options will show you all of the duplicates they have found so you can double-check them. But if you are going for speed, then you most likely won’t want to check them all. But it is worth taking a second glance if you know there are some treasured memories on there – like photos of your childhood pet or people you have lost. 

Downloads 

Do you still need the downloaded tickets from the family event you went to 3 years ago? Do you still need the brief that your client sent you a few months ago? 

Anything that is still in your emails you can do without. In which case, it is time to head into the downloads folder and get rid of everything you don’t need. 

If you diligently move everything out of your downloaders folder, then you might have to take a little extra time to find things. 

Cache

You’d probably be surprised about just how many temporary files are clogging up your computer and slowing it down. Clearing your computer’s cache is one of the longer tasks, but there are some software options that make it much quicker. 

For a windows laptop:

  1. Type Disk Cleanup in the search bar, and click Disk Cleanup when it appears.
  2. Let it work its magic – you will see a list, and you can select which files get cleaned.
  3. Tick temporary files and decide on the rest.
  4. Click delete files. 

For a MacBook: open Disk Utilities, go to first aid and click repair. This will scan and patch anything that needs to be taken care of. 

Files

This might be the longest part of the job if you can’t make decisions, but otherwise, it can be very swift. To make grouping easy, choose broad subjects like client work, household, reading, writing, art – or whatever makes sense to you. 

Start working through your files and putting them where they should go – it can be a working process; this is more about making a start. 

Once the folders are in place, it is time for you to make sure that every new thing that you add to your computer is put in the correct file straight away. This will prevent clutter. 

Any files that haven’t been opened in the last 6 months can be shipped to an external hard drive or deleted. 

Apps

If you can’t remember the last time you opened a specific file type and the app that it pertains to, it is time to say goodbye to that app. Applications take up a huge chunk of memory, and often it is a case of out of sight out of mind. Since you aren’t opening them constantly, you might forget that they are there. 

Be ruthless, even if you have a soft spot for that Adobe software that you used once or the app that is designed to help you work more productively that you never used after the first week. 

Commit to them or bin them! 

As you go, it can be pretty interesting to see just how much memory you are getting back. 

Cleaning your laptop is a great way to prepare it for your next big project, and if you’re into DIY, then check out this: Craft Room DIY for $120 or less! – Savvy Nana.