Freelance Writers Use This Simple 5 Step Laptop Maintenance Plan

Freelance writers, do you work on a Mac or PC? What’s your backup plan? My laptop has been acting up lately. It gets stuck when it goes into sleep mode and sometimes Windows takes a long time to boot. My laptop is four years old, but I was expecting it to last a little longer than that! I’ve been trying to ‘diagnose’ the issue, but I can’t be certain if it’s the CPU, hard drive, motherboard, Windows Vista operating system, or RAM. Who knows? I’m a writer, not a computer technician!

Freelance Writers Use This Simple 5 Step Laptop Maintenance Plan

1. Always backup your files. Choose a day during the week or month and backup up your computer system. You can also purchase an online backup system or purchase an external hard drive and backup your files.

2. Clean your laptop. Keep your laptop clean by cleaning it. I know it’s a ‘no brainer’ but you’d be surprises how many people own laptops but don’t take care of them. Use non-abrasive cleaners on laptop and it will look good as new.

3. Delete old files. Clean your system by deleting old files. When in doubt, transfer files to a USB or external hard drive and then delete them from your computer’s system.

4. Use a good surge protector. It’s important to protect your laptop or MacBook Pro from power outages. Purchase a heavy duty surge protector and make sure your outlets are up to code.

5. Defrag and cleanup your disk. If you’re not a techie or that computer savvy, have someone else do this for you. Locate your ‘My Computer’ on your laptop and open it. Find ‘Properties’ and right click on it. This brings up a menu. Select ‘Disk Cleanup‘ and allow your laptop to work its magic. If you feel comfortable with ‘moving’ around your computer, check out Tools and check for errors, Defrag your system, and Backup your files.


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3 thoughts on “Freelance Writers Use This Simple 5 Step Laptop Maintenance Plan

  1. I do most of my writing, via on USB flash key. My laptop is basically a word processor/media player/online chatting/surfing the web/checking-sending emails/watching dvds. Until it committed suicide. Good thing that I didn’t lose anything, except for that damn laptop. Now on my aging desktop, senile but still working.

    Anyways a laptop doesn’t have to be fancy. If you’re on a budget a 350.00 laptop will do fine. With a standard 4GB RAM will a decent HDD space. And use any word processor that you’re comfortable with. Such as MS office 2010, LibreOffice, Abiword and so forth.

    Consider your laptop as a tool and treat it as accordingly. Take care of it. And it will serve you well.

    Personally I prefer manually defragging my machine. After when it is complete, I boot the machine down. Then reboot laptop. With Norton 360, it does it’s thing for you. And then I boot down my machine, I never leave my machine on for more than 18 hours. When I do leave a machine on, I often hit the sleep button on my external media keyboard.

    I recommend that you don’t leave your laptop on for an extended amount of time. Especially during when there’s a thunderstorm, or a power outage. Otherwise your laptop would end up in the electronic hereafter.

      • Depending on a individual preference. Some would prefer a beefy laptop in small package with all the bells and whistles. Others use the mac OSX machine. Others make due with what’s available.

        A 350.00 to 400.00 Windows machine will serve it’s user. I would recommend in not storing a music on your machine. Store them on external hard drive. It will free your HDD space. It’s also a good idea to back up your system on a separate external hard disk. of course, you would have ask someone who works at a computer store. To inquire which external hard drive is good as a storage unit.

        In northern Canada, when there’s a first sign of thunderstorm, I shut down my machine. Wait for it to pass, then power it back on. Whenever a power outages occur, I just save my work and boot down the machine.

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