As far as computers go, Chromebooks are almost shockingly low maintenance. Google’s Chrome OS operating system updates itself silently and automatically—as do most of the core apps associated with the platform—without decreased performance when compared to traditional operating systems. Make your Chromebook faster, smarter, and more pleasant to use with these easy-to-follow annual steps.

Step 1: Uninstall Unnecessary Chrome Apps and Extensions

Time required: 3 minutes

If there’s one factor that can slow a Chromebook down—not to mention open the door to unnecessary data sharing—it’s having the system overloaded with apps and extensions you don’t actually need. Such programs have the potential to run in the background, eating up system resources, and also to bog down the actual loading of web pages (when it comes to extensions associated with the browser itself).

Step 2: Uninstall or update Android and Linux apps

Time required: 3 minutes

Chrome OS isn’t just about web apps anymore. These days, Chromebooks are capable of running both Android apps and Linux apps as well as web-centric items. If you’ve taken advantage of either of those possibilities, do the same thing we did in our last step and pore over your collection to see apps which you still use and which need to be removed.

Step 3: Optimize Your Time-Saving Shortcuts

Time required: 4 minutes

Chrome OS is full of hidden shortcuts and time-saving possibilities—including some super-useful things that require just a few minutes of your time to set up once or revisit so they’ll work to your greatest advantage.

Step 4: Set Yourself Up for Speedy Universal Voice Input

Time required: 1 minute

It’s easy to get spoiled with the effectiveness of voice input on your phone—so why not bring that same speaking power to your Chromebook? Chrome OS has a little-known option for system-wide dictation, and it works whether you’re using your device as a laptop or as a tablet.

Step 5: Clean Up and Connect Your Cloud Storage

Time required: 3 minutes

Chromebooks don’t tend to have a ton of local space, so take a minute to open your device’s Files app and clear out any clutter you no longer need. All set? Spectacular. This next part’s equally easy: connect your Chromebook’s Downloads folder to the cloud so that anything you download will automatically sync with your Google Drive storage and thus be available wherever you might need it.

Step 6: Set Your Eyes Up for Success

Time required: 1 minute

Last but not least, enable Night Light to ease eye strain. Accessible via the Quick Settings panel, the mode adjusts the temperature of your device’s display reduces brightness and glare in the evening hours (or any other time you find yourself in dimly lit conditions). It’s so impossibly sensible, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it.

Source: The 20-Minute Chromebook Tune Up by JR Raphael, published in Computer World