Speeding Up Your Home PC for Beginners
Illustration by Neil Webb
Watching:

What is defragmenting?


From:

Speeding Up Your Home PC for Beginners

with Laura Bungarz

Start your free trial now, and begin learning software, business and creative skills—anytime, anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts.

Start Your Free Trial Now

Video: What is defragmenting?

Voiceover: One of the ways we can speed up the computer is through a process called disk defragmentation. For those of you that aren't familiar with this process, I'm going to go ahead and explain what that is. Think of your hard drive as graph paper. You know what graph paper looks like, it's just a bunch of little squares. As you use your computer, the squares on the graph paper start to fill up, you start to color them in. So, you're adding software, you're putting your files, you're putting the pictures of the kids on there.
please wait ...
Watch the Online Video Course Speeding Up Your Home PC for Beginners
45m 52s Appropriate for all Jul 09, 2014

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Is your computer sluggish? Cluttered? Bursting at the seams? In this course, created for those new to PC maintenance and utilities, author and computer teacher Laura Bungarz shares some of her favorite techniques to help you speed up your home PC. Learn about defragmenting, checking your RAM, sorting files, and using utilities you already have to clean up "behind the scenes." Laura will also provide tips on upgrading your computer and, if your budget permits, looking for a new PC.

Topics include:
  • Cleaning the desktop
  • Organizing files with folders
  • Using Disk Cleanup, msconfig, and Disk Defragmenter
  • Freeing up disk space
  • Buying and installing RAM
  • Upgrading your computer
Subject:
Business
Author:
Laura Bungarz

What is defragmenting?

Voiceover: One of the ways we can speed up the computer is through a process called disk defragmentation. For those of you that aren't familiar with this process, I'm going to go ahead and explain what that is. Think of your hard drive as graph paper. You know what graph paper looks like, it's just a bunch of little squares. As you use your computer, the squares on the graph paper start to fill up, you start to color them in. So, you're adding software, you're putting your files, you're putting the pictures of the kids on there.

Those squares start to fill up. So, what happens over time as you use the computer is that the squares start to spread out, and that information on that hard drive starts to spread out. So, you can think of it like the piles of paper on your desk at work, and the more you route through those piles, the farther those files seem to spread. So, that's what happens on your hard drive. You're moving the information around, you're deleting information, you're adding new stuff, you're doing things, and the information will spread out.

That process eventually slows down the computer, just as it would you if you had piles of paper on your desk and they were all over the place, it would slow you down. It would take you longer to find something, and the same is true of the computer. So, what defragmenting does is it organizes those squares the same as you would if you were grabbing all the piles of paper and sorting through them, and throwing out the stuff you didn't need and moving it around, and alphabetizing it, or organizing it by color or whatever it was you were doing, that speeds up the process. The more organized you are, the faster things happen for you.

So, your hard drive is now faster. Some tips, though, with defrag. If you haven't done it before, it can take a really, really long time, and I'm talking eight to 12 hours. Be prepared to do this before you go to bed, plug in your laptop, it will drain your battery. Don't try to do this on battery power. Turn off any screensavers, power savers, anything you might have going on. Make sure most of the processes on the computer are off. You don't need Skype running in the background. You don't need any of that going on, turn it all off.

If you use your computer all the time, run it once a week. If you're not in front of your computer as often, you may not need to do it as often, you may get away with even once a month But, if you're like me, you're in front of the computer eight hours a day, you're going to want to do it regularly. There are scheduling functions that we're going to talk about that will do it for you automatically as long as you leave your computer on, basically. So, now we'll get into the process of how to actually defragment.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Speeding Up Your Home PC for Beginners .


Expand all | Collapse all
please wait ...
Q:  Can I defragment a solid-state hard drive?
A: It is not recommended to defragment a solid state drive (SSD). If you are confused about whether or not you have a solid state drive verses a standard hard drive there are a few ways to check. One way is to simply go into the Control Panel through your Start menu and go to the Device Manager. Look for the Disk Drive option, click the little plus (+) sign to the left of it and check the name of the hard drive listed. If it doesn't say outright one way or the other a simple Google search of the name of the hard drive will provide you with the information you need.
 
Another way to find it is by simply going into Computer or My Computer and right-clicking on your hard drive, probably C:. Under the Hardware tab it will tell you what type of hard drive you have. Again, if you're still unsure, do a simply Google search to find the information you need.
 
 
Share a link to this course

What are exercise files?

Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course. Save time by downloading the author's files instead of setting up your own files, and learn by following along with the instructor.

Can I take this course without the exercise files?

Yes! If you decide you would like the exercise files later, you can upgrade to a premium account any time.

Become a member Download sample files See plans and pricing

Please wait... please wait ...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.


Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ .

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

* Estimated file size

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.


Mark all as unwatched Cancel

Congratulations

You have completed Speeding Up Your Home PC for Beginners.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.


OK
Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member ?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

The classic layout automatically defaults to the latest Flash Player.

To choose a different player, hold the cursor over your name at the top right of any lynda.com page and choose Site preferences from the dropdown menu.

Continue to classic layout Stay on new layout
Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Learn more, save more. Upgrade today!

Get our Annual Premium Membership at our best savings yet.

Upgrade to our Annual Premium Membership today and get even more value from your lynda.com subscription:

“In a way, I feel like you are rooting for me. Like you are really invested in my experience, and want me to get as much out of these courses as possible this is the best place to start on your journey to learning new material.”— Nadine H.

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.


Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from lynda.com.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

   
submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.