How To Clean Your Computer Files, Programs and Images

How To Clean Your Computer Files, Programs and Images

How to Clean Your Computer

Do you have any idea what is on your computer? We’re talking programs, temp files, support files, toolbars,  updates, coupon printer software, registrations, enhancements and even downloads you used once a long time ago. Yeah, us either. Let’s be honest, most of us don’t know even know what half of those are.

You’re not alone.

There are so many files on your computer (likely in the folders you pass over all the time) that are sitting on your hard drive, taking up room and even running in the background. This slows everything down and takes up room.

We’re purging all month and the computer isn’t exempt. If it’s not helping us, it’s hindering us so GET RID OF IT!


There are so many ways you can get rid of the unnecessary files that take up memory and they are easy. All you have to know is if you have a Mac or a PC. If that question even has you wrinkling your forehead, an apple = Mac. Everything else is a PC. There, that was easy.

We’ll provide multiple SIMPLE ways to clean your hard drive. All resources will be summarized at the end with a list of links (in case you missed them the first time through).


A very simple way, and something that should be done on a regular basis, is disk cleanup. It’s already on your computer and it is a simple process. But no matter how simple someone says a task is, there are always questions. We’re famous for having a question that is NEVER found on a list of FAQs. WikiHow walks you through the disk cleanup step-by-step for a PC with images included. Bless their hearts for what they’ve done. Then, there’s the hard drive cleaning and physical cleaning of your PC. Don’t be intimidated by the wording if you’re not the computer savvy type. Just follow the steps and you’ll be just fine. “Shhhh shhhh shhh shhh, there-there, it’s okaaaay”. Hey, it calms my 5-year old son; I figured it would calm you, too.


Unless you are some computer genius or you built your own, there’s no way to know every little thing about all the programs and files you have on your computer. Some support programs you use on a daily basis while others are parts of a program you may have deleted a long time ago. It’s just taking up space. We’ve run across a FREE program for PC called Should I Remove It? It tells you exactly that. This is like a treasure hunt. Or better yet, a way of reflecting on what you’ve been doing on your computer. Sometimes our downloads get tricky and install a bunch of crap on our computer that we don’t want.


Talk about simple. There’s software you can download for a very reasonable price (none over $30) and even FREE that will constantly run on your computer and organize as you go. When you’re looking for a file, you don’t have to try and remember where you saved it, you just go to the folder you know it should be in and BOOM, it’s there. Think of these programs as a super-assistant. Everything you do on your computer just magically ends up in the right place without any effort on your part (after setup).

If you have a Mac: Hazel is “Automated organization for your Mac”.

  • Hazel allows you to set up rules (tell it what to do), make comments on your files, color-code your files and tell her to archive in a way that works best for your brain. She’s quite a lady, that Hazel. The Hazel software is $28, which is a one-time fee, and it does all the work for you. As far as we know, Hazel is the be-all, end-all for Mac. Nobody seems to want to take the ol’ broad on.

If you have a PC: Belvedere, FileJuggler and DropIt are options.

  • Belvedere allows you to set rules so your files go where you want them but the maximum amount of rules, at last check, was six. If you use the rules wisely, you can organize the rest on your own. Just find your trouble spots (after the disk cleanup) and assign rules to those. Belvedere is FREE.
  • FileJuggler works in a similar way as Belvedere and is being compared to Hazel for Mac (refer to the paragraph right above this one). The FileJuggler software is $25 but they do offer a 30 day free trial so you can test it out.
  • DropIt does claim to have a lot of features and is simple to download. DropIt is also FREE (they do ask for a donation if you feel so inclined – not mandatory). You can customize the options within the software to show you what it’s doing by showing you a progress bar or you can disable it knowing that it’s doing work in the background and you don’t have to deal with it.


This is a whole new project, wouldn’t you agree? Patti walks you through email organization and purging HERE. It’s less of a task than you might think and it’s totally necessary.


Photos take up a ton of room on your hard drive. Especially with all the selfies we take in one day. What? Don’t tell me you don’t flip that phone camera around to snap a shot of yourself because you think you owe it to the world. Is that just me? Whoops.

If you sync your phone with your computer, your images have to go somewhere. For iPhone users, you can put those photos on iCloud. I have yet to talk with someone who has plenty of room on iCloud for their images without paying extra. I upgraded one time and refuse to do it again.

If you upload photos from your camera on to your computer, you can literally see your hard drive shrink in memory. I was using DropBox but, again, I was having to continuously upgrade to make enough room for everything. It’s expensive!

Our solution: External hard drive and/or flash drives. It may seem old school for some but we can’t justify spending $20 or more to hold photos we will need access to maybe once – in about 10 years. While it’s not the case for all our photos, it’s the case for most of them.

We’ve purchased an external hard drive which is (in simple terms), a piece of equipment you plug into your computer. Just drag the images over to the folder created by the hard drive. It’s like packing your images in a box and taking it to storage – just digitally.

Viola, you’ve freed space on your computer. You can do the same with flash drives.

Once you’ve completed your necessary steps for cleaning, you can sit back knowing that you’ve eliminated the crap on your computer and you’re ready to add more to it!

tawsha connell

Summary of links:


How To Keep Your Email Inbox Empty

How To Keep Your Email Inbox Empty

How To Keep Your Email Inbox Empty | organizedCHAOSonline

Tawsha and I live on opposite sides of the United States, so a huge portion of our business communication is done through email. If you know either of us personally, you know we love what we do, have an idea a minute, and we do a lot of talking. This creates a ridiculous amount of work-related email. Then there’s the non-work related emails to each other, personal emails, subscription emails, …well, you see where I’m going here. Reading and processing 100+ emails a day left us little time to actually get any work done. We needed to find a solution. After some trial and error, we finally arrived at a system that really works for both of us.

Everyone uses email communication differently, and we all use different email programs. Although we use Microsoft Outlook, you should be able to use our process as a basic guide no matter what email program you use, and just tweak and adjust it where needed to make it work for you.

First of all, lets quickly clean out your inbox…


Your best friends are your Search and Find tools in your email program. Most of us get a lot of the same email notices that gunk up our inbox, like when someone repins your Pinterest pin. In Outlook, if you right click on a message, you can click the option “Find All From Sender”. It will pull up every message in your inbox from Pinterest. You can then click delete all. You could also type “Pinterest” in your email search bar to get the same list. Just repeat this process for all the messages you get a lot of…Facebook, Hometalk, your mom, that annoying person who forwards you jokes, etc, etc, etc. This is a great way to clear out a chunk of emails quickly. After you’ve cleared out as many as you can that way, you can then just individually go down the list of what’s left and delete them one by one.

The first time you completely clear out your inbox, it may take you awhile, but after you’ve done it this one time, if you follow our system below, you shouldn’t ever have to do it again. Do it, do it, do it! It will feel so good to have an empty inbox, even if you had to give up a Sunday morning to do it.

Now that you’ve finished, lets get you organized!


How To Keep Your Email Inbox Empty | organizedCHAOSonline

Think of and use your email inbox the same way you do your mailbox at home. Personal mail is delivered to your post office box or home mailbox around the same time each day. You retrieve the mail from your box, quickly scan through it, throw away the junk, respond to anything urgent or time-sensitive, then separate and distribute what’s left to it’s proper place. Right? After you’ve retrieved your mail each day, your mailbox is empty. That’s the goal we’re after for our email inbox.


Determine how often you’ll check your email each day. Keep yourself to a time limit. Stick to it! Set a timer. As we discovered, email can become a huge time suck. Example: You roll out of bed, grab a cup of coffee, and open your email. You don’t feel like working, you’re nice and cozy, and you click on the Wetpaint Bachelor recap link your friend included in her email that you have to read. Once your done, (if no other stories catch your attention), you go back to your inbox and open an email from Michaels. They’re having a 50% off sale!! You’ve got to see if that scrapbook paper is on special…. An hour later, you haven’t responded to any work emails and you’re totally unprepared for the Skype meeting with your client who’s trying hard to focus on your cute sweater and not drop their eyes to the pajama pants below it. Ugh.

We process email three times a day and limit our time to 30 minutes.  Make it known that you only check your email a few times a day, and if anyone needs your immediate response, suggest they send you a text or give you a call.


How To Keep Your Email Inbox Empty | organizedCHAOSonline

Turn off your audio and visual alerts. Some people have their social media accounts, such as Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest set to notify them by email when there is activity on their account. Most email programs offer visual or audible alerts to notify you of incoming email. Alerts are also available for your phones. So…if you have all these alerts activated, you’ve got yourself a whole lot of dinging, vibrating and notifications goin’ on that are screaming for your attention! If you’re tired or working on an extremely boring project, I don’t know about you, but it doesn’t take a lot to distract me and be checking out those incoming emails.

If you’d rather not turn your alerts off, another option is to change your email settings to only receive emails at a specific time, say during your lunch hour, or after your workday. Or… turn your automatic send & receive option off, which gives you complete control by allowing you to manually send and retrieve emails at times that are most convenient for you.


Our goal is to empty our inbox. To accomplish that in the time we’ve allowed ourselves, we need to have someplace to efficiently organize those emails. We need to create folders. Just as our email inbox is the same as our mailbox, email folders are the same as the file folders in our filing cabinet. The number of folders you create and what you name them, is totally up to you. All that’s important is that you create an organization system that lets you quickly move emails from your inbox to folders that make sense to you. They can be simple:

  • Need to Reply
  • Read Later
  • Add to Calender

or specific…

  • Meeting Notes
  • Applications|Resumes
  • Upcoming Seminars

During each of your allotted email times, try to delete, respond or file your emails as quickly as you can, and with any of your remaining time left, visit any “need to reply” or “read later” folders you’ve created and process as many of those as you can. When your time’s up, GET OUT!


How To Keep Your Email Inbox Empty | organizedCHAOSonline

Most email programs let you create “rules”. Based on options you check, an email will automatically be sent to a folder you choose as soon as the email is received. For instance, I subscribe to some yarn and crochet newsletters. I don’t want them in my inbox because I don’t have time to read them during the day, and I also want to keep all my craft patterns, etc in one folder. I first created a folder named “Crafts”. I then created a “From” rule for each of these email subscriptions. So when I receive an email, like  “From: Yarnspirations” it is automatically sent to my “Crafts” Folder. My OCD loves this because it keeps my inbox clear of emails that could easily distract me, and sorts them neatly in their designated folders for me to read when I’m done working. They are really, really easy to set up.

And that’s how it’s done.

Get to it…PURGE, PURGE, PURGE – you can DO THIS!

Patti signature

Image Credits:



Woman Yelling

FREE Black Friday Shopping App. So Organized!

FREE Black Friday Shopping App. So Organized!

black friday app tgibf

Dare I say there’s a little sanity in Black Friday? This free app will give you a list of all the stores in our area, all coupons and ads available, let you search by category and even save your list so you don’t have to lug around all the ads. This is go-time and we have zero leeway to mess around.

It’s coupon clipping and shopping organization in one. Be still my heart.

The app is available on iTunes and for Android

Oh, and P.S. the app lists online resources like Amazon.

Click on the above links and get to planning!

tawsha connell

Keep All Your Daily Online Tools In One Place

Keep All Your Daily Online Tools In One Place

home page productivity and information

Every day, the first thing I look at when I log on to my computer is my home page. I have been using iGoogle for a really long time. It was so simple because I could add apps to the page that had all my blog feeds, bookmarks, entertainment news, regular news and even quick reference stories. It’s my lifeline.

Last year, Google announced that iGoogle would be going away on November 1, 2013. That seemed like forever so I didn’t think much about it. My response is typically “I’ll get to it after this…”.

Well, this Friday is November 1, 2013. Turns out, forever eventually gets here.

Naturally, I’m figuring something out very last minute. True to form, I finally try something that has been talked about for a while now, it’s easy to set up and I stay up late customizing it. That’s how I roll. The thing that has been talked about is called NetVibes.

Pre-planning just isn’t my thing. There’s no adrenaline or stress. That’s no fun.

I have just finished adding my favorite feeds (and, eh hem, entertainment news sites) to my home page.

It’s All Customizable

You can choose all your apps (feeds, information, to do lists, etc), the color of your background, the color of your header, the theme, the setup and the color of each of your app title bars. You can ALSO change the layout and it’s all drag and drop. So. Easy.

Take a Peek at My Apps

Choosing what works best for you is essential. I wouldn’t typically share what I have on my page because it doesn’t really benefit you. However, being a very visual person and someone who needs to see the “big picture” before doing anything, I thought I’d share a little peek at my home page so you can determine whether or not this is a good fit for you.

desktop social news



home page entertainment news

desktop news feed organized chaos online

I have now set my personal NetVibes account to be my home page (see instructions below if you don’t know how to do this). Once I get used to having it, I’ll probably move things around and either add or delete apps. I can already think of things I’ll need like recipes and beauty tips. Hey, don’t judge. I am a total know-it-all. I don’t like being left out of the loop.

It’s Free

No explanation needed. Sign up for the personal account…unless you’d like to do more.

What are you using that makes online life easier?

tawsha connell


Instructions on how to set any website as your home page:

Go to the website of your choice. May I recommend organizedCHAOSonline or our feed on Bloglovin? Oh, look at that…I just did.

Once you are currently on the site you’d like to have pop up every time you open your browser (Firefox, Chrome, Safari), go to the tab at the top of your page. It’s typically on the top left. You’ll see a drop down menu. Here’s what you do next:

  • Click OPTIONS
  • You’ll see another OPTIONS. Click that.
  • You have now clicked OPTIONS and then OPTIONS
  • Under the GENERAL tab, you’ll see a section labeled STARTUP
  • Just look for “Set my home page as” and a  place to enter the web address (URL)
  • Enter the web address and click SAVE
  • Just like that, you did it.

This is what it looks like in Firefox

As always, if you have any questions, just comment below and we’ll do our best to help you. Being confused is the worst! No question is a dumb question. At least that’s what we tell ourselves because we’re the ones usually asking those questions. Also we are strongly recommend one of the our parner from India, they supply medical products to USA at low prices, there is website

set home page screen shot


The iPhone iOS7 Update. Don’t Be a Hater. Tips and Tricks.

The iPhone iOS7 Update. Don’t Be a Hater. Tips and Tricks.


How to Use Your iPhone is a regular series on organizedCHAOSonline. New technology, for some of us, doesn’t come easy. If you’re one of those people, these iPhone shortcuts, tips, and tricks will help take the mystery out of your phone, and hopefully make using it an enjoyable experience. If you have any questions in particular, just leave them in the comment section below and we’ll get you an answer…pronto!

website-dividerThe iOS7 Update. Do you Hate it?

Change is good, so they say. Whoever “they” may be. I was just getting comfortable, and probably a bit cocky using my phone, so held off on the update. I hadn’t talked to one single person who was happy with the new look after they had updated. I think the comment that bothered me most was that it reset icons to look like “a child’s artwork”. That bothered me, because I’m a sucker for clever icons and cool colors, basically the more asthetically pleasing, the more on board I am to learn. But blue and white text messages and blah stick figure type apps? I bit the bullet and updated, and have to admit, I wasn’t a fan…at first. The tricks I had learned didn’t work anymore and everything turned back into a chore.

I rebelled by ignoring my phone for a few days while I pouted (which, amazingly, freed up a lot more of my time – weird), I got busy trying to figure this sucker out. A week later, I’m back in the saddle and kind of liking this little update. Sure, it has some flaws, but for the most part, it works. Below are a few of the improvements, and new ways to do with the new what we were already doing with the old.

The Functions: New Ways To Do Old Things…

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Before Update: When your screen is locked and you receive notifications of messages, the sender’s first and last name appeared in the notification.

After Update: The update default displays only the first name of the person sending the message. Well that’s just swell if you only have one “John” or “Mary” in your contact list. But if you have several people with the same first name, it’s confusing.

To change this back to the way it used to be, go to Settings>Mail, Contacts, Calendars. Scroll down to Contacts and choose Short Name. Tap it to turn it off. Or, if you prefer one of the other choices listed, just click that instead.


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When you check your email, then play a quick game, and stop to read a text, unless you close those apps, they stay open and running in the background. This can drain your battery quickly. To close open apps…

Before Update: To close apps, you could double click on the Home key, and your open app icons would be a tidy little row. You’d hold your finger on one until they started to wiggle, then press the “x” on each one to close it out.

After Update: To close open apps, double click on the Home key. Instead of icons, you’ll see screen shots of the apps with their icon below. To close them, hold your finger on the screenshot and swipe up. Same theory, different process. Just work your way through them until they’re all closed.


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Before Update: When you received a text message, the time the text was sent to you appeared with each text.

After Update: Apparently the powers that be didn’t consider this important, so it’s been hidden, but…you can still find it. Hold your finger on any text message text bubble and drag to the left. The time sent will be displayed to the right of each message, but it goes away again as soon as you take your finger off the message. (I’m still not sure I’m a fan of this one).


New Features: New Ways to do New Things…

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After Update: Did you screw up and give your phone number to someone you shouldn’t have? You can now block all their attempts to contact you. This will block their phone calls, text messages, and Face Time attempts.

Here’s how:

  1. Add their number to your Contacts (finding their number shouldn’t be a problem – it will be listed 95 times in your Recent Calls list. Go to Phone>Recents. Click on the circle with an “i” to get their number).
  2. After you’ve entered their number in Contacts, scroll down to the bottom of the screen and tap on Block This Caller.

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After Update: Are you taking a picture of someone in motion? The update includes a redesign of the camera app that allows you to take multiple shots in quick succession.

Here’s how: Instead of pressing the home key to take your shot, press and hold the Volume Up button. Try it. Cool, huh?


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After Update: The update added quite a few new sounds to the sound library to choose from to set your new message notifications. Of course, I had to go and listen to all of them, and ended up reassigning all the sound alerts for new email, new text message, new voicemail, and my default ringtone. It’s fun, but I do this so often, I can’t ever remember what sound I’ve assigned to which alert.

Here’s how: Go to Settings>Sounds>Sound & Vibration Patterns. Go down each alert on the list and assign a sound to it. If one becomes annoying, you can go back and change these whenever you want.


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After Update: Are you multi-tasking and don’t have time to catch up reading your emails? Siri’s just sittin’ there doing nothing. Get her to read them to you.

Here’s how:Hold down on the Home button to wake up Siri. Tell her “Read my emails“. She’ll tell you how many you have, then read you the name of the sender, time and date sent and the subject of each. When I tried this, I had 25 emails. She read me three and asked if I wanted her to read them all. I said “no”. I thought this was a great feature, but I wanted to have the content of the emails read to me, so I asked her. Geez Louise she’s an accomodating woman! I told her “Read me the content of the email received at 11:15am.” She frickin did it!  Unfortunately, she also dutifully read the entire company’s disclaimer and copyright statement that was included at the end of the email, but hey, she’s just doing her job.


That’s it for now. Hopefully you’ll find something here that will solve a problem for you. Again, if you have a specific question, let us know in the comment section. Watch for the next update in “How To Use Your iPhone”.

Patti signature