Windows offers a place where you can perform a maintenance check on your computer and it will also troubleshoot your system to see if there are any issues that need to be taken care of. Here is where to find it and how to manage it to suit your preferences.
There are actually two places to go to perform maintenance and to troubleshoot your computer. First, open your control panel by right-clicking the Start button and clicking “Control Panel” from the menu. Next, click “Troubleshooting.” Under “System and Security,” click “Run maintenance tasks.”
When the System Maintenance window opens, click “Next.” It will search for issues and if any are found, it will list possible actions you can take to fix them. If no issues are found, it may suggest you run the troubleshooter as an administrator. Go ahead and click it so it runs as an Administrator. It will also search for issues with your time (clock) and for unnecessary files. Again, if any issues are found, it will recommend a fix. If nothing is found, go ahead and close the “System Maintenance” window and then the control panel window.
Now, open your control panel again. Go to the top-right and where it states “View by:” make sure you click “Large icons” in the drop-down menu. This layout gives you a little better view of all the features in the control panel. Go ahead and click “Security and Maintenance.” Then, where it states: “Maintenance,” to the right, click the down arrow to expand the section.
Here you can check for solutions to any problems that may have been reported by your system and it will also state its recommendations to fix them. Click the “Check for solutions” link to perform the search.
Next, click the “Change maintenance settings” link below. You will want to select a time that your computer will be turned on and when you are not using it. Use the drop-down to select your appointed time that maintenance should run. Click “OK” at the bottom to save your changes.
Click the down arrow again to expand the Maintenance section and then click “Start maintenance.” This will perform maintenance, such as software and Windows updates, a security scan and it will also diagnose your system.
When it is complete, it will notify you if there are any problems you will need to take care of. You can close the control panel at this point and continue to use your computer. But keep in mind your performance may be diminished until the maintenance program is complete.
For more than 15 years, Scott Lindsay has helped tens of thousands of people better their skills, publishing more than 400 articles about Apple and Microsoft software, the computer and the Internet. You can reach Scott for comments or questions at ScottLindsay@live.com.