How to Maintain Your Business Computers

In any business, the biggest office expense by far is any hardware you have to provide for daily use. Computers usually make up the bulk of this expense, so it’s in any business’s best interest to properly maintain these devices. Here are a few tips for making your computers work better and last longer.

1. Update Passwords

Gone are the days when you could make your password for everything “password”. It’s important for the safety of your data and your devices that your company regularly updates everyone’s passwords and uses automated testing tools. And it’s equally important to require passwords to be complex, with certain amounts of lower and uppercase letters, numbers, or special characters.

It’s important for employees to regularly change their passwords and avoid using the same ones across multiple accounts, as well as reusing old passwords. And wherever possible, try to enable two-factor authentication, which both makes accounts safer and makes them easier to recover in case of forgotten passwords or usernames.

2. Provide Adequate Memory

Memory needs will change from company to company and from department to department, but it’s important to ensure that everyone with a computer also has the memory space to accommodate whatever work they’re doing. If memory is being used inefficiently, give employees instructions for where to store data or how to get rid of redundant or old data. And if your employees need more memory to do their work properly, look into upgrading your company’s RAM across the board.

3. Keep it Clean

An often-overlooked factor of hardware maintenance is its physical cleanliness. But having dust or other impurities on the outside of your matching could easily affect the inside over time, causing the keyboard to stick or other malfunctions. You can buy an air-spraying device to clean out dust, and there are silicone disks that can be wedged into tight spaces to get anything the air spray misses. Having a neat desk and keeping food and drink away from your machine will go a long way towards keeping it cleaner longer.

In addition to physically cleaning your device, you want to regularly clean up its contents. Over the course of a computer’s life cycle in your office, a lot of unnecessary data is guaranteed to be accumulated. All this detritus can become so big a burden that it can slow your machine down significantly. Certain utilities can clear your cache, empty the trash can, and remove temporary files for you in one go, which makes it easy to regularly tidy up your desktop.

4. Install Anti-Virus

Maintaining your computer is also about keeping it safe from outside attacks. It’s very possible that in the course of a business day an employee could accidentally install viruses or malware. All it takes is one incident like that to render a computer totally useless.

Thankfully, it’s pretty easy to prevent this from happening by installing and regularly updating an antivirus program. A good antivirus program will refresh its virus identification daily to be on top of the latest trends and will perform weekly scans of your device to look for anything it might have missed.

5. Defrag Your System

Defragmenting, or defragging, your system is how your software ensures that everything is in good shape once you’ve made a significant change to the system or software. Your device should come with a built-in utility for performing this task, and it should be routine to “defrag” anything once a big change has been made. That way, nobody is being handed a device that is no longer fully functional, with no idea of how to fix the issues.

Having an IT staff is a great idea for any office, but they can only do so much to prevent issues from coming up. Making sure your office understands proper computer maintenance will go a long way towards keeping your machines functional and preventing big interruptions to the work day.