You are doing exactly what I did.When I was at University, the computing benchmarks were the Tandy TRS-80 and one of the very first Apple Computers.It took 40 minutes to load a simple grid game from cassette tape..which I assume was called Star Trek as the enemies were Klingons lol.I didn't think this would catch on, so I moved in a different direction academically!Many years later, whilst walking down the street and being besieged with http://www.wowthatlooksinteresting.com signs, I made a decision to buy a computer, get online, and learn. That was only 6 years ago. I now write websites, fix and build computers, and have a pretty thorough knowledge of both XP and hardware. I've never had a lesson until I took up fulltime studies in IT last year. The first year of study has taught me nothing that I didnt already know, so I am looking forward to something more challenging this year.I am totally hooked!The way I learned is by making the mistakes myself and finding a way to deal with them. I've destroyed computers completely trying to do things that I wasnt sure of. Throughout, I have found a lot of help in forums like this one. It looks like you are going down the same road 🙂Let me know if you need help when you build your first website ! 😉A reasonably good antivirus and separate anti-spy is fine. In this case, you would of course also use Windows Firewall.I scan daily, its a combined scan because I have a suite but if I had separate programs I would run both daily. This isnt necessary really, once a week is probably fine for both. I just like to keep the computer awake while I have a bath 😉I turn my computer on when I wake up, and off again when I sleep. Rebooting is only necessary if you have a reason - ie the computer is freezing or you have installed software which requires a reboot or something. I was thinking a bumper sticker *I DEFRAG DAILY* would sell well, what do you think? Every couple days would be good for me though lol. Once weekly I would suggest rather than monthly were I you.Dedust the tower, especially any filters, as often as it needs. A routine can be a good idea I agree.I have never run Reg Cleaner or anything like it. I depend on my security suite to protect me, I think twice before I install things, and generally try to observe good habits. I dont think there is a lot more you can do really without getting obsessed about it. If you are happy with what you are doing, and its working for you, then you are doing fine 🙂Some may disagree with my version of O/S maintenance but here it is. At least once a year, I remove all the files I want, one at a time, onto DVD. I leave behind the rubbish I have accumulated. I make backups of all my settings, bookmarks, email folders, and anything else I need. Then I reinstall Windows, update , put all my stuff back, and have a nice clean new Windows installation into which I can install my current favourite programs.
Mitz from Tips4pc