No sooner has spring arrived and the urge to do our spring clean blossoms; make the floors shine, clean the car, weed the garden… But what about our computers, tablets and smartphones? A regular deep-clean should also be performed on our electronic devices.
Here, we offer 6 practical tips on how to prepare your devices for spring.
Firstly, (and regularly from now on!) perform a backup of your data and check that it is readable. After cleaning up and moving folders, important data can quickly become lost in ‘data purgatory’. A backup of your important data gives you the freedom to be that little bit braver when deleting things.
A proper folder structure with understandable naming helps identify important documents and files. For better organisation, you can also use partitions to separate system and user files. But it’s important that you don’t touch programme folders or system files! Should you find that whilst cleaning data, important files have become unavailable, a data recovery software such as Ontrack EasyRecovery 10 can help recover unintentionally deleted data quickly and easily.
People tend to have their computers for a fair few years. But where software benefits from regular updates, the hardware remains exactly the same. But hard drives age, and the older they are, the higher the risk of failure. For this reason, you should seriously consider changing your hard disk for a newer model after a certain period of time. When the drive starts making strange noises, it’s usually too late.
Desktop computers in particular tend to accumulate a large amount of dust which can affect the cooling system. The consequences can include overheating, system crashes and loss of data. It is therefore important to keep your desktop clean, but strongly recommended that you don’t clean the sensitive electronic equipment with a vacuum cleaner. It’s much safer to use a compressed-air spray.
It is often a struggle to throw out old computers and laptops, and so they generally end up serving as dust collectors in the attic. However, many of the parts can be recycled, and there are even places that repair and update old equipment and even donate it to people in need . Still, when disposing of your old computer, you should be sure to erase the hard drive completely. For this, a secure data erasure programme such as Ontrack Eraser is recommended ; that way you can be sure that no readable data remains on the hard disk.
If, in spite of all the precautions, you still lose data, don’t panic! Think about where the data could be located? Have you used your computers’ search programme? And checked the recycle bin? Are there any other drives that might hold this data? Do you have a backup? If you’re still unable to locate your data, and want to recover it at any cost, consult a specialist. It is very important that you don’t alter the folder structure; do not move, copy, or delete any file or folder! Kroll Ontrack, specialists in data recovery and secure data erasure, have a global network of computer labs, and may very well be able to rescue your data. Through a complete analysis, the recoverable data can be identified, and you can then choose if and what you want recovered. That way, you’re always on the safe side.