Every now and then I like to write a post on maintaining your writing instrument–the computer. If you want to have it act right, you need to treat it nice.
Here are some tasks that should be done on a regular basis, along with links with some directions, just in case you don’t know how to perform the task:
Defragment your hard drive. Think of this as “housecleaning”.
Back up your computer. If you don’t have a system for this yet, it’s time. All you have to do is have things crash once to make this oh-so-worthwhile.
Back up your e-mails. Didn’t know you had to do this? If you use Outlook, you need to back up what is called a .pst file, otherwise you are not going to have your e-mails if there is a problem. The server will only archive them for so long, so be sure to do this and then burn to a DVD or back up on other media. It won’t automatically back up when you back up the computer, so do this step too.
File e-mails in folders. This one is pretty self-explanatory, but people don’t do it. Keeping up with your e-mail is key when it comes to running a good freelance writing business. Being able to find an e-mail can mean the difference between looking pro and looking slow.
Clean up. Use anti-static wipes to clean your screen and blow out the keyboard with compressed air.
Take out the trash. Empty your recycle bin.
This is a simple guide for PC users. I’m not a Mac, so if anyone cares to leave a tip or two for Mac users, I wouldn’t complain. ; )