I highly recommend making a backup of your data every week and running a full virus scan at the same time. Since a full virus scan can take several hours, it's best to do it overnight. You can also consider using a cloud backup service if you trust the provider.
Backing up your data regularly helps ensure that you can recover your most recent files if your computer encounters a virus or other issues that prevent it from running properly. I suggest using the backup strategy outlined below.
Additionally, I suggest investing in a 32GB USB drive and saving the installation files for any programs that you use frequently. I save these on my "OP Startup" USB. This way, if you need to start from scratch, you won't have to spend time searching for and downloading all of your essential programs.
Here is the weekly backup strategy I recommend:
1. The night before, run a full virus scan using a trusted virus scanner, such as the Microsoft Safety scanning tool. It's best to do this while you sleep and have disconnected from the internet and turned off remote desktop control.
2. Create a restore point with the current date.
3. Quickly review your installed programs to see if there are any suspicious recent installs.
4. Move any new valuable installation files to your "OP Startup" backup drive.
5. Check for any updates to Windows, the main software you use, and your computer manufacturer's updates.
6. Move everything from your auxiliary default folders to your main storage folder for easy backup.
7. Run the following repair scans: DISM /online /cleanup-image /RestoreHealth and sfc /scannow.
8. Do a simple virus scan.
9. Copy your main file package over to your backup drive.
10. Create a Windows image file through the Control Panel > System & Security > Backup & Restore (Win 7) > Create System Image (usually located on the left panel).