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When I'm not traveling, my trust Thinkpad T510 is used as a secondary machine -- for when I'm working at night on the couch or if the desktop is busy. The desktop machine is where I work most of the day. At a show like Lotusphere I'll be exclusively using the laptop for 8 days so it really helps if I make sure it's in good shape.
Taking a few extra steps once in a while keeps things smooth, stable, and quick.
Here's what I do to make sure it's all set...
1. I go through my installed applications and remove any that I've installed to try and ended up not using. Over the year, you'd be surprised how many of these accumulate. They waste space, add boot time, and use memory they don't need to.
2. Clear out my "TEMP" files and download folders. I have a folder I used to put things I don't mean to keep. I'm not talking about the system temp location, this one is my own and all the scratch stuff I need while I'm writing code or trying different things goes there.
3. Run CCLEANER to clean out all the system folders, the browser caches, the type-ahead in the address bars, the third party browser cookies, and all the other detritus that Windows based machines are just terrible about allowing to accumulate. If you've never done this, I strongly recommend it. Make sure to go through all the settings and check things like "compact databases" for the browsers. You can build up hundreds of megabytes in those cache files.
4. Using a tool in CCLEANER, or one in Spybot S&D, or StartupCop (they all work) I go through and turn off the startup programs that get installed. Apple is the worst of these (more on that later), but lots of things end up auto-starting that I really don't need and would rather start myself on the few times I need them.
I repeat steps 3 & 4 at least twice with a reboot between them because some programs (Apple) are obnoxiously persistent.
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