Many people are switching to devices like a Chromebook and they have a lot of questions just like this reader: “I have a Chromebook, and am very unfamiliar with it as I’ve always used Windows on my desktop, etc. How do I clean it up, defrag, etc?”
Great question! While a Chromebook looks a whole lot like a Windows laptop, it’s really a very different type of device. A Chromebook is really more like a tablet than the Windows PC you’re used to. Truthfully, it’s really a tablet in a laptop’s body.
So there’s no need for routine PC maintenance tasks like defragging. Chromebooks run on the Linux-based Chrome OS, which usually doesn’t require defragging. Chromebooks have SSDs, which are more like memory cards than physical drives. So moving and rewriting the data closer together on a drive wouldn’t really speed anything up.
The big difference is that a Chromebook is designed to be an Internet appliance. Instead of boasting a large hard drive to install programs on, this device is designed to be used online with apps like Google Docs instead of installing several GBs worth of a program like Office.
You won’t be able to use the traditional Windows programs on this device. Instead, you’ll find apps in the Chrome Web Store.
You’ll need to find Chrome app replacements for your favorite Windows programs like Paint or WordPad. Most Chromebooks don’t have the computing power to handle high-powered desktop programs like Photoshop. But they are lightweight and low-maintenance. That’s one of the reasons they are very popular with schools, who like them for student use.
But as more and more things like games become online activities, Chromebooks become a great lower-cost alternative for most folks. If you mainly use your PC for the Internet and email, your new Chromebook should work out great for you. While you don’t hear a lot about hackers going after Chromebooks, do make sure to download a security app like Avast. Enjoy your new device.