Type: Maintenance software
Price: £24.59 (Amazon)
Keeping on top of the myriad problems that can blight an otherwise healthy PC can be quite a challenge. To a novice, watching a PC slowly grind to a halt can be as painful as helplessly watching a beloved goldfish float gradually to the top of the tank, ready for that last long trip down the toilet bowl. Sort of. Either way, dealing with broken registry entries and disk defrags can be quite daunting for the uninitiated.
Enter TuneUp Utilities 2010, an easy-to-use piece of software that helps you maintain your Windows system (XP, Vista, 7, 32-bit and 64 bit) and fix many problems. After installation, the software begins by asking you a few simple questions on the nature of your PC use. It then compiles a list of suggestions based on your answers that it thinks will speed up your PC’s response times. It’s incredibly simple and highly customisable, and the fruits of its work are immediately apparent. Registry issues on my machine were tidied up, a thorough disk de-frag recommended and carried out, as well as the deletion of over 160GB of outdated system restore back-up data. My system start-up times were noticeably improved.
The Live Optimisation function works very similarly. Sitting in the task bar, it prioritises start-up times based upon your configuration, and generally increases the speed at with which programs respond. There is also a comprehensive selection of Windows customisation tools, including browser add-ons, which can prove to be not only attractive but also useful, as switching off some of the showy Windows animations can seriously improve system performance.
Turbo Mode however had me a little stumped. It rolls all of your fancy OS graphics back to a basic function-over-fashion look, and prioritises your current task, switching off unnecessary background applications. This is all well and good, but as the Turbo Mode itself eats away at precious system resources, I personally found it of little use.
Now, to be honest, if you know your PC like the back of your RSI wracked hand, TuneUp Utilities 2010 isn’t for you. You’ll already know how to do most everything on offer here for free, and you’ll likely do it with a smug air of superiority as the lowly “noobs” flounder with their snail-paced computers. However, for those who aren’t too comfortable with the back end of PC maintenance, or those who’d just rather have everything in one sleekly presented place, you cant go far wrong with TuneUp Utilities 2010.