Clean Your Hard Drive
One of the first things you can do to keep your computer running like new is free up some space on your hard drive! If your computer is fairly new you probably have a big hard drive. But if you don't watch out, it will become full and sluggish before you know it. If you have a digital camera and store your pictures on your computer it can fill up in a hurry! And if you download music and/or movies (I hope legally!) that will also fill up a drive in a hurry. Windows needs a certain amount of free space in order to operate optimally. If the pagefile (or swap file as it is sometimes called) does not have enough space to work, your computer can really slow down or seem to freeze as Windows tries to find the room it needs to operate.
So backup those pictures, music and movies to external media, such as CDs, external drives or flash drives. Nearly all newer computers come with at least a CD drive, most with CD/DVD drives. So take advantage of these tools and move that stuff to another location. This will also ensure you won't lose your files in the event of a computer crash or hard drive failure. Be assured these things will happen eventually!
Most new computers come with a number of programs besides just Windows. If you use these programs, great! But if you don't use them, they are taking up space on your hard drive, so go to the Control Panel and click on the Add/Remove icon and wait for the program list to populate. Once the list is available, scroll down and find the unused program, highlight it and click remove. Just be careful and don't remove anything you may decide you want later!