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Digital spring cleaning 101

Like the basement or garage, your digital life may have become cluttered with the winter’s accumulation of photos, videos and even some digital pests like viruses and spyware. This spring, before you clean your closets and tidy your garage, clean up your digital life, too.

Woman spring cleaning computer

Instead of becoming overwhelmed by spring cleaning tasks, start where you probably spend the bulk of your time, especially if you work from home — your computer. Just as our houses can become cluttered with tangible items, our computers can become equally crowded. Start your spring cleaning online by conquering a few simple tasks that will take minimal time and effort, but take a lot of stress off of your plate.

1Organize stored photos

Remember the time when people used to have the pictures on their cameras developed into real prints? Now, I bet you have months worth of treasured memories languishing on a memory card in a drawer. Get those pictures off your memory card and onto a hard drive where they’ll stay stafe until you’re ready to print them.

2Digitize your VHS tapes

If you have stacks of old movies and home videos that are collecting dust on your shelves, it might be worth investing a lazy Sunday in organizing them digitally. While there are some vendors that can do this for you, it can often be quite costly depending on the size of your collection. To DIY, you’ll need a video capture card or external capture device (such as a camcorder ) to import it to a video application like iMovie or Windows Movie Maker (which you probably have on your computer). From there you can edit the movies, add titles, music — you name it — and burn them to DVDs.

3Back it up

Ever wonder what you would do if your hard drive inexplicably crashed? Save yourself a future headache by backing up all of your files using a cloud system or an external hard drive. MiMedia offers secure storage, organization and universal access to all files including music, pictures and video. Where back-up services offer limited access and sharing portals lack security, MiMedia combines the best of both.

4Update your security

There are a great number of security programs that can help your computer run faster and smoother. If you don’t have one already, install an antivirus protection program that can keep your computer free of virtual bugs and viruses. Also, check your computer’s firewall settings if you share a wireless internet network with neighbors or roommates — you want to make sure your computer isn’t sharing more data than you’d like.

5Get organized, online

If you’re feeling overwhelmed online these days — and who isn’t? — it’s important to take control of your internet life. Download an organizational application like MojoNote that can help you store your various passwords for different programs and keep track of your daily to-do list.

More about organization

How to keep your jewelry organized
Ideas for keeping your closet tidy
Clean out your medicine cabinet

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