The storage devices you use often do not perform to their full potential. In order to optimize their performance we need to make the operating system fully compatible with the storage devices. Some of the tips which will help you enhance the performance of your storage devices on Windows are shared below.
1. Close Applications Not in Use Make more memory available by closing the applications that are not being used. Running multiple applications simultaneously can result in your system hanging up and may also damage your storage device.
2. Delete Unnecessary Files Periodically delete unnecessary files and empty your Recycle Bin, compact your databases, and then defragment your hard disk with the Microsoft Windows Disk Defragmenter. To run the Disk Defragmenter, click the Windows Start button, point to Programs, point to Accessories, point to System Tools, and then click Disk Defragmenter.
3. Adjust Virtual Memory Settings In most cases, the default virtual memory setting used by Windows should perform optimally. However, in some situations, adjusting virtual memory parameters can improve performance. If you've already tried deleting unnecessary files and you still have a performance problem, try changing the default virtual memory setting.
4. Increase RAM Increasing the RAM avoids the need for your computer to resort to using virtual memory. Over usage of the virtual memory causes the computer to slow down and increases the possibility of a crash.
5. Change Your Wallpaper and Screen Saver If you have a wallpaper (full-screen background) bitmap on your Windows desktop, replace it with a solid color or pattern bitmap, or no bitmap at all. If you use a screen saver, use a blank screen saver or consider not using one at all. This might seem trivial but it enhances the performance significantly.
SPEED UP MS WORD WITH SHORTCUTS
Thinking of catching up on your correspondence or maybe getting started on that Booker Prize winner? Here are a couple of useful shortcuts that everyone needs to know to make MS Word easier and less time consuming!
Ctrl + F – Allows you to search for specific words in a document
Ctrl + H – Allows you to find a word and replace with another throughout the file
Windows (icon) + D – Minimizes all your windows to show you your desktop
Ctrl + C – Copies a selection
Ctrl + V – Pastes a selection
Ctrl + S /F12 – Saves your word file
Shift + F3 – Changes the case of the selected text
Ctrl + O – Opens a file
Ctrl + D – Opens up the font settings in your word file
Ctrl + K – Turns selection into a hyperlink
Ctrl + A – Selects all the text in the word file
Ctrl + P – Prints the document
Ctrl + Z – Undoes whatever you’ve just typed or formatted
Ctrl + X – Cuts the text you’ve selected for you to paste elsewhere
Ctrl + N – Opens a new word file
Ctrl + W – Closes the word file
Memorizing shortcuts may take some getting used to, so start with aiming to use one or two a day. Gradually, you will find them getting stored in your memory and your work will get much faster too.
DISABLE UNNECESSARY BACKGROUND PROGRAMS
What’s Running In The Background
Many programs install themselves so they launch automatically at Windows start-up. Whether you need them or not, they're using memory and CPU cycles. Windows 98, Me, and XP users can disable unnecessary background programs using the Startup tab of the MSCONFIG program, which you can launch from the Start menu's Run dialog. Windows 2000 users will need a third-party tool, such as PC Magazine's Startup Cop utility.
Disabling anything listed in either MSCONFIG or Startup Cop should be safe. But keep in mind that if you disable the system tray, you'll lose the clock and volume control in the system tray. Also, one or more instances of LoadPowerProfile or TweakUI do no harm, because they don't remain in memory.
Identify Cryptic Processes
You can see what's currently running on your system by launching the Task Manager by pressing Ctrl+Alt+Del. In Windows 98 and Me, you will see a simple list of active applications. Windows XP and 2000 will also list all active processes along with their memory usage and CPU time. Don't worry if the System Idle process seems to be hogging the CPU; all unused CPU cycles are assigned to this process.
Use Windows Help
If you have a problem with your computer, don't call for tech support right away. Select Help from the Start menu and enter the search term troubleshooters in the Index tab. If the Help system doesn't have a trouble-shooter for your particular problem, try searching on other terms related to the problem.
Capture Error Messages
Many computer problems involve error messages, and it's essential to record the precise wording of these messages. In Windows 2000 and XP, pressing Ctrl+C will copy most error messages to the Clipboard. Launch Notepad, paste a copied message, and save it. Under Windows 98 and Me (or when Ctrl+C doesn't work), type the exact text of the message into Notepad for reference. (You can also take a screenshot of the error message by hitting Alt+, which copies the screen image to the Clipboard, and then opening Paint and pasting the image into a blank file. You now have a picture of the error message.) When copying or reporting an error message, you can omit the interminable lists of numbers found at the end of some message boxes.
SEVEN STEPS TO PREVENT PC EYE STRAIN…
Computer eyestrain is the number one office-related health complaint, but there are lots of things workers and employers can do to reduce what is called Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS). Your vision can affect your body by developing a harmful condition called as presbyopia. This means for people in their forties or older, the computer screen gets a little fuzzy, even with glasses. The following list of tips will help you to minimize your eye-strain while working on your computer.
Adjust the brightness of Computer Screen: Eyestrain is often caused by excessively bright light coming in from outside and excessively bright light inside. When you use a computer, your ambient lighting should be about half that used in most offices. Also adjust the monitor to make sure the contrast between the screen background and the on-screen characters is high.
Blink more often: While working at your computer you tend blink five times less than what you actually blink. Blinking is very important when working at a computer — it moistens your eyes to avoid dryness and irritation. Try this exercise: Every 30 minutes blink 10 times by closing your eyes as if falling asleep (very slowly). This will help decrease the dryness in your eyes.
Distance and Position: Place your computer monitor 18-30 inches from your eyes. If you are seated near an air vent or draft, try to eliminate the flow of air in front of your eyes.
Exercise to stretch your eyes: Look away from your computer screen every 30 minutes, and focus for 5-10 seconds on a distant object outside or down the hallway. Another exercise to readjust your focus is to look far away at an object for 10-15 seconds and then near for 10-15 seconds. Both these exercises will help you prevent strained near vision and stretch your focusing muscles. Anyone in a deskbound job, especially those using computers, should stand up, move about, or exercise their arms, legs, back, neck, and shoulders frequently.
Modification of work station: Adjust your workstation and chair to the correct height. Purchase ergonomic furniture to insure proper screen locations and posture. In case you need to look back and forth between a printed page and your computer screen, this can cause eyestrain. Place written pages on a copy stand adjacent to the monitor. Properly light the copy stand; you may want to use a desk lamp, but make sure it doesn't shine into your eyes or onto the computer screen.
Frequent Breaks: It is mandatory to take a 10-minute break every hour to reduce eyestrain problems. However, if you feel the need to take more breaks, it may be an indication that you are suffering from computer vision syndrome. Make sure you get enough sleep (approximately 8 hours per night) to avoid eyestrain.
Accessories: Use an anti-glare screen to protect your eyes from the glare of the monitor. Always wear sunglasses when it is bright outside. Have an anti-reflective coating applied to your glasses. This will prevent glare and reflections on the back side of your lenses from reaching your eyes. For significant problems you can consult your doctor about artificial tears or eye drops that you can use during the day. This can indeed make your eyes look better with vasoconstrictors that reduce the size of the blood vessels in your eyes.
CREATE A QUICK ROUTE TO OPEN FLOPPY/DISC DRIVES
Getting into the floppy drive generally means an impatient wait for the drive to open up, and then selecting or saving your file. In Windows 95 & 98 you can create a short cut to these drives. Click on My Computer (keep it open as a smaller window so that you can still see your desktop), click and drag your floppy drive icon out to the desktop, and release the mouse button. Alternatively just right click on the `a’ drive icon and select `create shortcut’ on the menu bar that appears. When you do either of these, the computer will ask if you want a short cut on the desktop. Click yes. The next time you want to view the contents of a floppy, just double-click your new shortcut on the desktop and you're in.
CREATE A SHORTCUT BAR
Did you know that you could replace your MS Office icons on the desktop with the Office Shortcut Bar? Well, if you’re wondering why on earth would somebody want to do such a thing, here are three good reasons. One, you can make more room for your desktop icons. Two, the toolbar gives you access (at a single click) to all your Office applications, making desktop shortcuts to them unnecessary. Three, this shortcut bar is accessible without you having to go to the desktop every time. In other words, the short cut bar is visible while you are working on any application. Here’s how you do it: Go to the Start Menu, click on Program Files, and then select Window’s Explorer. In the fresh menu that appears, select Program, then the Microsoft Office folder. Then select the Microsoft Office Shortcut Bar, and click on it. You can customize the toolbar that is created by right clicking on the four-coloured box in the upper left corner, and selecting Customize. Include or exclude any program that you want on the shortcut bar.
DELETE WORDS IN A JIFFY
The Delete and Backspace keys are the ones you use when deleting stuff you don't want. But you could save a lot of time by just deleting full words instead of getting rid of them character by character. Here's how you do it: in Microsoft Word, press Ctrl and then Backspace to delete the word to the left of your cursor. To erase the word to the right of the cursor, hit Ctrl and Delete. Now isn't that faster. Of course, if you delete words that you actually need inadverdently, you can always use the Undo function