Friday, November 20, 2009

What Happens When Your Hard Drive is Almost Full?

slow computer crashed hard drive
Time to Buy a New Hard Drive or Dump Your Data

There comes a time in every computer users lifetime that the primary internal hard drive on your laptop, PC or Mac is filled to the brim. Typically this happens very quickly with the high resolution photos (read lots of megapixels) and video clips from birthday parties, nights out with friends and the family. One of the first signs of a full hard drive is slower performance. Read and write speeds or access to documents and programs begin to slow. There are several solutions to remedy the problem and this doesn't mean trash your computer and buy a brand new one (unless of course you are craving something fresh!)

If you have a computer tower, it's always best to add more RAM. In general there are one or more available slots for additional DDR RAM. Simply stop by the local computer store or big box store, grab a couple sticks and install them per the directions. You'll quickly realize that this is the best way to keep your old machine in tip top condition.

Another method to keep the best performance out of your hard drive is backup data to an external hard drive. This can be done with a USB, Network attached drive or even a media server / file server. Create a new folder on the backup device and move your data over. Once a copy is made you now have the information in two places (always a great thing in case your full hard drive crashes). Now that your data is backed up properly you have the option of installing an additional hard drive (in your PC or Mac tower) or replacing the old one.

Other tips for improving performance include emptying the recycle bin on a regular basis, cleaning up the Windows registry, running a disk cleanup, defrag the computer (defragmentation) and empty your cache. For complete details on how to improve PC performance, click here.

Keep up with these simple tips and you'll be rocking a fast computer in no time.

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