Maintaining a blog and pc on a regular schedule can seem like a daunting task because there is so much to do. Use this free printable checklist each month to make sure you aren’t forgetting anything.
Its not just the beginning of the new year, but its also the beginning of a month and that means MAINTENANCE! Years ago, I got into the habit of doing all my pc maintenance on the 1st of the month. It is just easier to remember to do it if you have a set day. PC Maintenance is important so it is good to get yourself trained to do it. After all, for most bloggers our pc’s are our babies! Right?!
- Backup your hard drive – Its important to backup your hard drive incase the unthinkable happens! I’m so worried about it, I actually do this two ways. I have a little external that stays hooked up and constantly mirrors my drive. Additionally, on the 1st I hook up my WD Passport and let it backup anything that has changed on my drive. I love this little thing, you guys. The software is SO easy. Once you set it up with your preferences, you just hook it up and it does everything automatically. I don’t leave it plugged up all the time, because I don’t want it to overheat or fail. It is my backup for my backup AND it is small enough I can just drop it in my purse when I go on vacation and I still have all my files in case I need something on my laptop. I thought about backing up to “the cloud” but I really like that I don’t need the internet to access my stuff. Plus, I’m not so sure I want all my files out “there”. The cloud just doesn’t seem too secure to me. I’m old. I just don’t trust it. LOL Another backup thing I do, twice a year – I burn all my family photos to DISK. Yep. I kick it old school. I throw the disks in my fire proof box, and I sleep easy knowing that if I lose everything I own, I will not lose my tangible memories.
- Do any WINDOWS updates and reboot
- Update Virus Software and Definitions – I use AVG free
- Update Firewall Version
- Update Spyware Software and Definitions
- Empty Windows TEMP folder and reboot – This sounds scary, but its not. Learn how to EMPTY WINDOWS TEMP FOLDER here
- Run disk cleanup wizard and reboot
- Run system defrag and reboot
- Update any drivers
- Blow out your computer- No, I’m not talking about giving it sleek shiny hair. PCs get so dusty on the inside guys. This bogs down the fans. When the fans fail, the pc overheats. When the pc overheats, we spend months crying about all the files we lost and how that was our most favoritist hard drive of ever! Seriously though, keeping your fans clean is a big deal. If you do NOTHING ELSE on this list, do this. Here is a step by step walk-through of how to blow out your pc.
- Clean your monitor, keyboard, and mouse
A blog, much like a pc, needs to be maintained to function at its best! Since I already do PC Maintenance at the beginning of the month, I just started doing my blog maintenance at the same time. Here are the steps I run through at the beginning of the month.
- Backup your website – if you have access to a backup wizard, you can do this yourself. If not, you’ll have to contact your web host. Ask them for a ‘full site backup’
- Backup your databases – Same as above. If you don’t have access to the backup wizard, though, you can back up your MySQL files from within PHPMyAdmin.
- Delete all spam comments
- Optimize databases—I’m loving WP OPTIMIZE right now!
- Update all plugins
- Update WP Software
- Delete any unused or unnecessary plugins
- Delete unused themes—Don’t delete the CORE theme, though.
- Delete all Post Revisions
- Update affiliate Links—New month means new programs!
- Repair any broken links—I’m loving the BROKEN LINK CHECKER plugin for this right now! Since we changed our domain name, I still have a TON of old links to fix! GUH!!! All.The.Work!
- Delete cache—You should be running some kind of caching plugin to speed up loading times. If you’re not..uhhh??? I use SUPER CACHE. Every so often, I just go in and delete the cache so it can rebuild the cache. Some crawlers won’t recrawl your site if your cache is old.
I know it seems like a LOT to do, but once you get into the habit it is pretty easy. I’m even going to give you my checklist! Feel free to download my printable Monthly Maintenance Checklist here. You can print it monthly like I do, so I can put it in my binder, or print it once and laminate it. Then you can just use dry erase markers to check it off as you go and wipe it clean for next month!
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