>> Is your PC run down, sluggish, feeling blah? Does it poop out at parties? Your hard drive may be bogged down in unwanted files and feddered with fragments. I'm Tom Merritt from www.CNET.com. In this edition of Insider Secrets, I'll show you how to use 3 freeware programs to put the pep back in your PC.
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>> Thanks for the folks over at Download.com for tipping us off to some of the apps I'm gonna show you. We've got 3 parts to a clean, tidy hard drive. Part One, get rid of unwanted files and programs. First off, you need to get rid of the files you know you don't need. You can spend a lot of time looking through folders or anything like that or you could use a free program like Sequoia View or WinDirStat, which is fun to say. SequoiaView maps out your entire hard drive as a pastiche [assumed spelling], separated into blocks. The blocks show you what fields are taking up what space and you can manipulate the files from the SequoiaView map. WinDirStat works in a similar way, but has an immediate delete feature that bypasses the recycle bin. That takes of the files, but what about programs? You don't wanna just go delete programs. That can leave a mess. Registry files and all kinds of things all over the place. So, get a free program called C Cleaner, that quickly uninstalls any programs you no longer want. Now it's time to find the things you don't know you don't need. Part Two, get rid of hidden unwanted data. C Cleaner comes in handy here too. It also detects and removes things like application data for uninstalled programs, temporary internet files or Windows log files. Uncheck any types of files you don't want deleted, for instance, I like having the recent documents list, so I'm gonna uncheck that. Then press Run C Cleaner. And just one more part to go. Part Three, defragment. One last thing that can slow down your drive is fragmented programs. I like to use action figures to demonstrate this. I'm gonna do it again. Let's say all these action figures are data and my hand is the read arm of a hard drive. If all the data is right here together, it's easy for me to grab it. But as you add and delete data, it gets scattered all over the place. That means my hand has to keep moving back and forth to grab the data. Oh look at that, bad sector. Anyway, when the data's fragmented like that, it uses up more energy and slows down operations. Windows has a built in defragmenter, which works okay, but it's pretty bare bones. Auslogics Disk Defrag is freeware that displays the progress of your defragmentation process, along with other valuable stats. Most importantly, it reorganizes your hard drive data for optimal performance. There you go, a little disk management can put the pizazz back into your PC. That's it for this edition of Insider Secrets. I'm Tom Merritt for CNET.com.
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