Tune-up performs these tasks to help improve your computer's security and performance:
Remove unnecessary files from your computer
This task helps free up hard disk space on your computer by deleting some files that are no longer needed and compressing files that have not been recently used.
This task is turned off by default. To include it in your Tune-up, you must turn it on. How do I do this?
Defragment your hard disk
This task consolidates fragmented files and folders on your computer's hard disk (A device, also called a hard drive, that is used for long-term storage and retrieval of data needed by your computer. Your programs, operating system, and most of your files are stored on your hard disk.) , so that each file occupies a single connected space on the disk. As a result, your computer can gain access to your files and folders and save new ones more efficiently.
If your hard disk is very fragmented, the Defragment your hard disk task will not defragment the entire disk in one Tune-up, but will perform it gradually over several Tune-ups.
Check your computer for viruses
This task checks files on your computer for viruses and other malicious programs and automatically takes steps to help prevent harm to your computer if infected files are found.
This task scans files that are already on your computer and is different from Antivirus monitoring (An ongoing process that runs whenever your computer is turned on and checks your programs and files for viruses while you use them.
) , which is an ongoing process that happens whenever your computer is running. For more information about Antivirus monitoring, see How does Antivirus monitoring work?.
Check your computer for files needing backup
This task checks for files that are new or have changed since your last backup. If files are found, a new item appears in your Actions to Take list.
If you choose to back up your files to an external hard drive (A removable hard disk that connects to your computer by means of a USB or Firewire connection.) , Tune-up will back up your files automatically during this task. For more information, see Related Topics.
Check for missing updates from Microsoft
This task helps make sure that your computer is up-to-date with all the high-priority updates (The most important software updates for Windows and other Microsoft programs that should be installed as soon as they become available. High-priority updates include critical updates, security updates, service packs, and update rollups. ) that it needs to have. If your computer is not up-to-date, you will receive an Action to Take with a shortcut to go to the Microsoft Update (A Microsoft Web site that provides software updates for Windows components and other Microsoft programs.) Web site and install the updates you need.
By default,when you install Windows Live OneCare your computer is set to download and install updates from Microsoft as soon as they become available. This happens automatically, whether or not Tune-up runs. The Check for missing updates from Microsoft task in Tune-up is a second check, in case any high-priority updates were missed or failed to install.
By default, Tune-up runs every four weeks. You can change its schedule to run more or less frequently. You can also select the day of the week and the time that Tune-up runs. To do so, click View or change settings on the left side of the Windows Live OneCare screen. In the Windows Live OneCare Settings dialog, click the Tune-up tab.
While it is running, Tune-up consumes some of your computer's resources and will noticeably affect performance. Although it is possible to use your computer while Tune-up is running, you will probably find it more practical to schedule Tune-up to run at a time when your computer is turned on but you are not actively using it.
The Tune-up tasks are not as essential to your computer's protection as the other features—such as Firewall and Antivirus monitoring—that Windows Live OneCare performs on an ongoing basis. For this reason, the default frequency for Tune-up is set to every four weeks. However, you might want to increase the frequency of Tune-up if you find that you are creating or changing important new files on a regular basis, or if you want to be sure that the files that on your computer are being regularly scanned for viruses beyond the protection that is already provided by ongoing Antivirus monitoring.
When your computer is turned off, in Standby or in hibernation Tune-up will postpone running until the computer is turned on or wakened. After Windows Live OneCare starts, Tune-up will see if it had been scheduled to run when the computer was off or inactive. If it was, Tune-up will tell you that it will start in 30 seconds and then run the tasks that had been scheduled.