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108
votes
19answers
20k views

How do I physically prevent people from unplugging an Ethernet cable?

We have a crowded computer laboratory. We render free Ethernet ports for laptop users. But they don't carry their Ethernet cables with them, they unplug cable of a fixed desktop PC and plug it to ...
68
votes
9answers
25k views

Restoring performance and estimating life of a used SSD drive?

My old 128 GB SSD drive is about a year and a half old now, and I've since upgraded to another drive. I'd like to clean up my the old SSD to ... restore its performance to near-new levels ...
65
votes
9answers
5k views

Suck or blow? What's better for dust?

The guy at the local PC hardware store told me it's better to use a small hand-held leaf blower to blow dust out of your PC case than a hand-held vacuum cleaner. Why is this? I understand that fans ...
48
votes
7answers
80k views

Disable “automatic maintenance” in Windows 8

I'm running a few VMs, and suddenly I noticed my CPU fan was spinning louder than usual. I tracked it down to Windows 8 doing some "automatic maintenance": How can I turn this completely off? I ...
41
votes
10answers
5k views

Which malfunctions cause old computers to slow down and crash?

I've had a few computers of my own break after a few years of use, and I've seen computers owned by friends and family do the same thing. They either slow down (even running the original software ...
14
votes
5answers
16k views

use rm to remove files and directories recursively

is it possible to use rm to remove files and directories matching a pattern recursively without using other commands?
11
votes
5answers
9k views

How do I trim my Time Machine backups and find and exclude frequently-updated large files from bloating it?

Time Machine is nice because it Just Works and it does its magic in the background. But left to itself, it can really swell up due to either large files that you don't really need backed up slipping ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

How do I preserve an unused computer?

I have a netbook that I am not using but would like to preserve for posterity. What precautions do I need to take to ensure that the machine does not undergo any deterioration? The machine will remain ...
10
votes
4answers
5k views

How does dust affect a computer?

It is generally known that dust makes computers slower, and that cleaning out the dust regularly can make your computer run better. What I have not seen, is why this happens. From what I know dust ...
10
votes
2answers
30k views

How do I safely remove keys from a keyboard?

I have a custom key I want to use on my new Deck keyboard, but I'm unclear how to safely remove existing keys from the keyboard without damaging them in the process. Should I use a special tool? A ...
9
votes
3answers
151 views

How often do drives need to be spun up?

I've got a Frankenputer that is used as a workbench PC to help fix other machines. As such, it's only ever used when something else is broken, so there are often long stretches where it's sitting ...
9
votes
1answer
501 views

Tools to (privately) annotate/markup a website for maintenance

I've been tasked with updating a website. Rather than proofreading and updating each page (one at a time), I want to make a single pass over the entire website, marking graphics/images/videos that ...
8
votes
7answers
9k views

How often should I dust the inside of my computer?

I would like to avoid frying my computer. I understand dust collects inside on the boards and the CPU cooling unit. How often should I open up the chassis and what process should I use to safely ...
8
votes
3answers
606 views

What should I make my computer do while I'm away from keyboard? [duplicate]

During the day, usually I'm away from my computer for 3-5 hours. I also sleep 6+ hours every night. I run Arch Linux x64 on my computer. Besides the usual things that do not require user ...
6
votes
2answers
508 views

UPS - practical maintenance advices to help end-user keeping batteries (classic lead acid models) in good shape

I have read that most (maybe all?) UPS devices for personal computing have lead-acid batteries inside. As long as its chemistry, compared to lithium-ion, is very different, I would like to know ...
6
votes
5answers
27k views

How can laptop keyboard keys be removed and replaced?

I'm trying to fix a laptop keyboard that has issues with keys on its left side. Just by feel, it's clear that something sticky got under there. There could be something crunchy too, but that might ...
5
votes
4answers
7k views

Is it safe to get dust out of a PC with an air blower?

I use an air blower to dust the inside of my PC every few months. I keep the PC fans from turning when doing this to avoid turning them into dynamos and possibly causing damage to the electronics. ...
5
votes
5answers
2k views

Is there general Linux periodic maintenance that I should be doing?

On Windows, I used to check every so often for disk fragmentation, delete large files, defragment, check through the registry for startup entries/process hogs, etc etc. While generally people say ...
5
votes
3answers
2k views

how to restore windows 7 to a know working state every time it boots

A couple of days ago my mother asked me to set up a computer at her house, she wants to use it to basic web browsing, video chat and nothing more. The problem is, neither my mother nor my sister know ...
5
votes
3answers
5k views

See all information about all processes, daemons, etc. running on Mac OS X

I like to view information about all processes (including every daemon etc etc) that are running on Mac OS X. I use: sudo ps -A Update: I also tried Activity Monitor as suggested by Alex. My ...
5
votes
4answers
2k views

Is there a way to compact OS X's swapfiles?

Is there a simple way to compact the /var/vm/swapfile0 etc, short of rebooting? They can get quite large if things start swap'ing, and my laptop doesn't have much free disc space..
5
votes
1answer
324 views

Is any special maintenance required for an edible ink printer?

Is there any special maintenance required in order to maintain food safety and keep the printer operating correctly? For example, do I need to manually clean the print head periodically to prevent ...
4
votes
8answers
460 views

What things should I run daily, weekly, monthly on my Windows machine?

What things should I run daily, weekly, monthly on my Windows XP machine? De fragmentation Scan-disk Full system scan Disk clean up Trojan checker malware remover or any other thing... And should ...
4
votes
3answers
12k views

Why does my computer slow down after being on too long?

I'm sure everyone has experienced it - if you leave a computer on too long, every once in a while, it needs a fresh reboot. I have a laptop, and I only hibernate it, but every week or two, I'm going ...
4
votes
5answers
2k views

What are the reasons for a Computer to gradually slow down after months of use? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Why does hardware get slower with time? After freshly installing an OS, the PC is super fast, and after few months they are super slow. I regularly maintain the PC, my ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Computer USB Port Cover

I have recently brought a computer with a unique design (which I thought was cool!). The USB port is facing upwards, meaning my USB thumb drive will be placed vertically, as in, in an upright ...
3
votes
2answers
297 views

Registry Cleaner, useful or not [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Is it worth cleaning the registry? Hi, I’m constantly seeing Ad’s about Registry Cleaning. Each time I see one of those Ad’s I remember reading an article (don’t ...
3
votes
1answer
86 views

How do i reformat my Macintosh?

How do I completely clean out/reset/reformat/whatever my Macintosh? I'm talking a deep cleanse here. I'm willing to look at any free software that may aid in this. I'm running OSX 10.6.5.
3
votes
2answers
323 views

OS X Maintenance - how to keep the system clean?

I'm a .NET developer and a long time Windows user. Recently I've been working a little bit on OS X Leopard, trying to learn iPhone development. So far so good - Mac OS X seems like a great operating ...
3
votes
1answer
18k views

Certain keys on my keyboard stopped working

Ive never spilt anything on my keyboard and they do work some of the time. All the keys that aren't working are on one side of the keyboard, but its not the entire side... 123456789 qwertyuio[]\ ...
3
votes
1answer
8k views

How to make changes in linux maintence mode

I notice when Linux boots in maintenance mode the filesystem is read-only. Is there a way to change this, perhaps remounting as writable? An example of this being a problem is that I was unable to ...
3
votes
0answers
64 views

Optimal Environment for Secondary Storage [closed]

What's the best temperature/light/humidity exposure for secondary storage (USB/Flash Drives/SSDs), to mitigate the probability of data loss over time? I'm using SD cards to backup data and would ...
2
votes
3answers
362 views

Should I care about my HDD?

This is screenshot of HD Tune: Should I care about my HDD? Are these warnings important?
2
votes
1answer
122 views

What is the PCI card that tells you what's wrong with the computer?

First, I'm not sure if this is the correct place, so apologies for that. Second, I want to know how to easily identify the hardware faults. I heard about this PCI card that when connected to the PC ...
2
votes
2answers
3k views

How can I clean HOME folder in linux?

There is a way to clean in a controlled way the $HOME folders than usually save cache files? E.g: I have a .config folder with more than 300MB. How can I clean it?. Is there a program that can be ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

Automatically executing Disk Cleanup on shutdown

I've been poking around trying to get Disk Cleanup to run when my Windows XP Pro SP2 machine shuts down. The main reason for this is to clean Local Settings/Temp to remove old junk automatically. (I ...
2
votes
2answers
406 views

How to clean hardware with an air compressor?

Can I safely use an air compressor to clean the internal components of a computer or might hardware be damaged if the air compressor is too powerful?
2
votes
2answers
174 views

Dust protection for new NAS

I just got a new Netgear ReadyNAS and I am a bit worried about DUST. What can I do to reduce the chances of dust damage ? Would mounting it to a wall or shelf help with this ? Can I build some ...
2
votes
1answer
820 views

Run htop over ssh via single command

I want to run htop over ssh - but launch it automatically on a keyboard-less system with a shell script. My first idea was ssh user@test.home 'htop' but: Error opening terminal: unknown. Is ...
2
votes
4answers
886 views

Defragmentation stops and does not reduce below 52%

In one of my PC a single drive is not defragmenting. When i do it using windows defragmentation option the fragmentation does not reduce below 52%. I tried so many times and facing same problem. Then ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

Should something be done if I drop my laptop on the floor and it looks fine from outside?

Are there any software / hardware tests that one should perform if this happens? Note No, I haven't actually done so. I just need to know about this issue beforehand should it happen in future.
2
votes
1answer
39 views

How to solve white stripes issue on printer

I have an old Lexmark x502n Laser Multifunction color printer. It works perfectly, except it stripes everything I print with white lines: I searched on internet and it seems that whenever ...
2
votes
1answer
301 views

SMART-Test never finishes

When running SMART-Tests using smartmontools, they NEVER finish. I always get "Interrupted (host reset.)" on various different systems and disks, including Debian in x86 and ARM, OS X on x64, with ...
2
votes
2answers
638 views

How to protect my portable HDD from physical damage? [closed]

I have a 1TB Portable HDD - Western Digital: My Passport. I usually keep it in my pocket and move around a lot, I wanted to know what I can do to protect it from possible damage (if there is any). I ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

Can a Raid5 array be optimized using defragmenting or other maintenance tools?

I have a Lian Li Ex-50 Raid Array setup to be 4x 2TB WD Black in a Raid5 formatted to HFS+ (journaled). The raid array is a hardware raid running through a Sil3132 chipset (SATA2 via eSata ...
2
votes
3answers
11k views

Automatically deleting 'C:\Documents and Settings\user\Local Settings\Temp'

I'm trying to find a way to automatically clean/delete the temporary files from C:\Documents and Settings\user\Local Settings\Temp\ at shutdown/boot on my Windows XP Professional x64 SP2 machine. The ...
2
votes
0answers
245 views

Will using a bicycle pump to clean my laptop damage it?

I have a Lenovo G580 laptop. Unfortunately, there is no way to access the fan even after opening maintenance hatch, so I have no real way of removing dust from the cooling vents without using some ...
2
votes
0answers
984 views

How to get status of Windows 8.1 maintenance?

How do I get the status (5% complete, 10% complete, etc.) for the Windows maintenance, once it is running? Can that be turned on, if it exists, when not running? I am running Windows 8.1 Professional ...
1
vote
8answers
277 views

Windows OS - well maintaining

I am planning to well maintain my desktop PC. It has the Windows OS (Windows XP) and connected to internet. I do the following activities, on weekly basis. Windows Update Anti Virus Update ...
1
vote
2answers
871 views

How do I maintain and clean a printer?

Just like computers, printers also collect dust and dirt over time which can staple up and cause opponents to slow down or move incorrectly. Unlike computers, they contain objects that move a lot and ...