Your work as a translator is heavily depended on a computer. No matter which form and shape it takes, you have to treat it with care and love. It’s not merely a machine, it’s your indispensable assistant that helps you to go through the daily work. This is why I think you do have to allocate enough time for regular maintenance and improvement tasks. Turning on an anti-virus programme and scanning for malicious software will not do the trick. Your assistant needs more than that.
1. Clear cache memory
First, you will have to clear the cache memory to improve performance and speed up your computer. Do to it, you can run a utility such as ”CCleaner” that will remove all temporary files, browser cache, most-recently-used lists (MRUs), cookies, correct invalid registry entries according to your requirements (here you can find more on using CCleaner like a pro). As a result, you will be able to enjoy better performance with more available memory.
2. Defragment your disks
The next step that your computer will definitely love is disk defragmentation. Files are often written to a disk in separate “blocks” that are placed far away from each other. When you require access to the file, it takes longer for the disk to read it, because the read head have “visit” multiple blocks. Defragmentation puts the blocks in proper order, so the time necessary to read a single file definitely decreases. Depending on your Operating System, the defragmentation tool may be already built in (Mac OSX, Microsoft Windows 7 and 8), allowing for automatic defrag. For other systems and for more advanced use, you can use tools such as Defraggler or Smart Defrag. More details on the defragmentation tools are available here and here.
3. Check your hardware
Finally, to improve your computer performance you may want to look into hardware issues. To find out if your processor is overheating, and as a result slowing down the CPU, you can use tools such as SpeedFan that will help to identify possible problems and then let you take appropriate actions, e.g. exchange failed fans or clean filters. Updating the drivers or investigating, if proper drivers are used is also an important step on the way to more efficient work.
All these tasks can be performed in quite a short time and will definitely improve your overall workflow. Regular maintenance and extra care given to your machine is absolutely necessary to avoid more important issues in the future. After all, it is better to spend some time on daily maintenance than to suffer from a sudden crash with long-term effects. Thus, you can concentrate on translation, rather than complex and time-consuming error fixing.