Computers are at the top of the most valued pieces of equipment in any business establishment. Businesses rely on their computer hard drives to preserve productivity, store important data, and communicate with customers. Computer problems stifle work flow by intrusive with employee productivity. Not only does this create a backlog in work, it results in loss of profit by snowballing payroll expenses. It may even lead to a loss of potential customers. When considering the consequences of a hard drive failure, businesses have no choice but to implement a few preventative measures to minimize the chances of it happening prematurely. The good news is that businesses can maintain their computer’s health without involving too much time or resources.

If you follow these 10 tips to maintain hard drive performance it will be beneficial:

1.Think twice before installing or downloading software. Computers may start acting odd after installing a computer program downloaded from the Internet or disk. Each software installation needs hard drive space. In other words, multiple software installations will eventually slow down the computer.
2.Install software that applies to business operations. Be careful of downloading software programs from the Internet without scanning them for viruses. Use a reputable anti-virus program and firewall to manage incoming traffic and access to the PC. As a rule of thumb, install trustworthy programs that will help business operations. Everything else should go onto a miscellaneous computer used for testing programs that may benefit the company down the road.
3.Update the operating system. Most businesses use Microsoft Windows as their primary operating system. Microsoft Windows allows users to update the operating system on a regular basis by accessing the “Windows Update” website. Users simply visit the website to automatically update the operating system.
4.Remove needless programs. Delete unwanted programs every few months. Unused and unnecessary programs waste valuable hard-drive space. If the business does not plan to use them, then remove them using the “Add/Remove” feature in the Control Panel of the operating system. Removing unnecessary programs also makes it easier to navigate.
5.Defragment the hard drive. The hard drive works hard to keep the computer functional. In fact, it is the hardest-working component within the machine. Nobody can access stored files if the hard drive crashes. Unfortunately, the hard drive does not save files in any particular order. It uses the first empty space available, including the space created after deleting files. This distributes data across the hard drive, making it harder to access stored data. As a result, it becomes necessary to defragment the hard drive on a regular basis to keep the computer running as quickly as possible. Businesses should make an attempt to defragment all computer hard drives on a weekly basis.
6.Clean around the physical machine. A computer’s hardware needs a thorough cleaning to keep it working properly. Businesses who stack piles of paper in front of air vents will eventually need to call a tech guy to fix an overheated hard drive. Ensure that the computer runs properly by uncovering the air vents. In addition, vacuum around the computer to keep dust and other debris from getting into the computer.
7.Maintain computer security. Prepare for the worst when it comes to computers, especially for business matters. Use backup methods to secure important data. Many businesses can make copies and transfer important data to a central server or external hard drive. Businesses may also create backup copies of their data and upload them online. The sky is the limit when it comes to security.
8.Keep static at bay. Static electricity wreaks havoc on computer components. Repairmen should always ground themselves before handling computer components directly. This especially rings true during the winter months or in geographical regions with drier air. If even the slightest touch produces a “shock,” then avoid handling computer components altogether. This rule also applies for other surface areas that produce static electricity, such as televisions, stereo speakers, and other household appliances. Most of these devices do not have magnets strong enough to erase a hard drive; however, it is a chance that no business should risk.
9.Use power save. Businesses should configure their operating systems to spin down after a specific amount of time. Windows 7 already has a feature that turns off the hard drive after twenty minutes of inactivity. Adding a minute or more will prolong the life of the hard drive. Configure this feature to small time intervals if the employee takes frequent breaks. Sleep mode makes it easier to return back to work without having to reboot the computer. It also prolongs the life of the hard drive.
10.Install a monitoring application. A monitoring application offers a host of features that will ensure that the hard drive is in good condition. From monitoring hard drive temperature to percentage of free space, a monitoring application can lower the risk of a crash substantially. Many provide alerts that will keep any business establishment on their toes against drive failure.

Don’t forget to back up your data. Always back up your data so you are prepared for the day when your computer fails to work properly. You can use a cloud storage service to do this behind the scenes on a daily basis.