Just as a car engine requires periodic tune-ups, computers also need regular maintenance to ensure optimal use. Over time your computer's performance can start to diminish, as system errors occur, files clutter your hard drive and security vulnerabilities materialize. One pragmatic and cost-effective solution to your computer's declining functionality is to use PC system utilities software. These applications can clean up your computer and rid it of hard drive errors, redundant files, security threats and more, resulting in a faster and cleaner system. Running a PC system utility regularly can help your computer last longer and minimize potential performance lag and slowdowns.
The best PC system utility applications are those that are complete maintenance suites, providing system management, repair and optimization of your computer. As such, they should be able to perform an array of system tasks, ranging from data recovery to hard drive defragmentation.
When evaluating PC system utilities, we looked for management tools that can track system performance, terminate running processes and uninstall programs. Such tools allow you to efficiently manage applications on your computer in order to keep it running optimally and prevent slowdowns.
PC system utilities should also combat viruses, spyware and other harmful applications that hog system resources and wreak havoc on your machine. Malware is often unknowingly installed after you visit unsecured websites or download files from unknown sources. In addition to removing viruses, the software should be able to remove junk files and fix file errors.
In terms of optimization, PC system utilities should provide options to fine-tune system settings for optimal performance. For instance, the software should optimize the settings of the operating system to ensure it is working properly. It should also optimize your memory settings so that when your computer's hard drive is filled to a certain level, the software works to free additional storage space. Finally, defragmentation is an important part of optimization, and any PC system utilities software you are considering should include this feature. Defragmentation is the process of organizing the data on a hard drive into the smallest number of sections, or fragments, possible. A heavily fragmented hard drive is significantly slower than a non-fragmented drive. Subsequently, defragmentation can improve your computer's response times.
Given the inherent complexity of utility software, it comes as no surprise that there is a slight learning curve with most PC system utilities. However, the software should still be accessible and easy for everyday computer users to utilize. We looked for applications with intuitive interfaces to foster easy navigation and provide quick access to features.
Another thing we considered was the technical support supplementing each software application. The manufacturers of PC system utilities should provide in-depth documentation as well as direct technical support. You may have questions come up as you are installing or using the software, so informative resources – either in the form of online documentation or a technical support rep – are crucial.
Whether you know the root of your computer's declining performance or not, PC system utilities provides a broad range of remedies to fix problems and optimize the overall operation of your system. For the best PC system utilities software on the market, see our top picks: Advanced System Optimizer, WinZip System Utilities Suite and System Mechanic.