10 + 2 free system tools to maintain your computer, and keep it in top shape.
We talked about keeping your computer physically clean, just a few days ago. Today, we’ll focus on keeping your computer’s operating system and subsystems clean, so that you can ramp up your system’s performance.
With that in mind, I retested some of the free system tools I’ve rated and recommended, over the last year or more, that will do a great job of revitalizing your system. These free applications are at the “Top of the Class”, in my view.
There may be slight overlaps in functionality between applications, so I’m not suggesting that you download them all – choose those that best meet your specific needs.
If I’ve missed one of your favorites that you feel should be on this list, then let me know with your comments.
CCleaner is a freeware system optimization, privacy and cleaning tool. It removes unused files from your system – allowing Windows to run faster and freeing up valuable hard disk space.
It also cleans traces of your online activities such as your Internet history. Additionally, it contains a fully featured registry cleaner. But the best part is that it’s fast; normally taking less than a few seconds to run.
Glary Utilities, a free all-in-one utility, is a terrific collection of system tools and utilities to fix, speed up, maintain and protect your PC. Personal experience with this application for the last 2+ years, has convinced me that a typical user can really benefit by having this application on their system.
With this free program you can tweak, repair, optimize and improve your system’s performance; and its ease of operation makes it ideal for less experienced users.
Advanced SystemCare Free is a comprehensive PC care utility that takes a one-click approach to help protect, repair, and optimize your computer. It provides an all-in-one, and super convenient solution, for PC maintenance and protection.
Do you want to get a better understanding of what programs are being added to your computer? Then WinPatrol is the program for you. With WinPatrol, in your system tray, you can monitor system areas that are often changed by malicious programs.
You can monitor your startup programs and services, cookies and current tasks. Should you need to, WinPatrol allows you to terminate processes and enable, or disable, startup programs. There are additional features that make WinPatrol a very powerful addition to your security applications.
Revo Uninstaller is a superior program designed to uninstall programs from your computer. This free program with its advanced and fast algorithm scans before, and after, you uninstall an application.
After the program’s regular uninstaller runs, you can remove additional unnecessary files, folders and registry keys that are usually left over on your computer. This feature is a definite plus.
If you’re looking to track down spyware, or speed up system startup–and you’re technically astute–then RunAlyzer may be just what you need. Run it, and it performs a thorough analysis of all programs and services that run when you start up your computer.
Note: Recommended for advanced users only.
This free utility has the most comprehensive knowledge of auto-starting locations of any startup monitor, in my view, and shows you what programs are configured to run during system boot up or login, and the order Windows processes them. These programs will include ones in your startup folder, Run, RunOnce, and other Registry keys.
You can configure Autoruns to show additional locations, including Explorer shell extensions, toolbars, browser helper objects, Winlogon notifications, auto-start services, and more.
Autoruns goes considerably beyond the MSConfig utility bundled with Windows.
The longer you use Windows, the more cluttered your registry can become, especially if you regularly install and uninstall software. Many applications, on being uninstalled, leave behind “orphan” registry entries. They don’t remove all traces of themselves which can cause problems such as sluggish performance, system lockups, or a bloated registry that takes longer to load on startup. With the click of a button, Regseeker will scan your registry for these fragmented files, and safely remove them.
Note: Recommended for advanced users only.
Wise Registry Cleaner is a free, non aggressive application that, as one of my friends says, hits a home run in the safety department. As it searches the Registry for obsolete/redundant registry keys, it differentiates between those that are “safe to fix”, and those that are “not fully safe to fix”.
To provide the greatest safety factor for those who are uncomfortable, or unfamiliar, with cleaning the Registry, the application’s default removal setting is – “safe to fix”.
One of the oldest and most well established free Windows tweaking applications, Freshdevices’ Fresh UI is a powerful tool that allows you to configure and optimize your version of Windows.
This small (1.24 MB) program has a clean, easy to understand interface that gives you access to hundreds of system settings, some of which are hidden, and others that are just hard to find. The interface is organized by section for easy navigation, and it is complete with detailed descriptions for easy reference.
The program is extremely easy to use, does not require any analysis phase and is faster than most disk defragmentation software I’ve tested in the past, and it’s free. In my view, it’s one more maintenance process in helping me get the maximum performance out of my hardware.
If you’ve been looking for an easy way to fix issues such as, Win Explorer not starting at boot up, CD drive or DVD drive is missing or not being recognized by Windows, or other programs, or the Device Manager is not functioning correctly (not as uncommon as you might think), then the recently released FixWin freeware application, could be the perfect solution.
It’s important to note however, FixWin does NOT scan for problems. You, have to recognize that you have the problem – the application will then correct the problem, provided of course it is one of the 50 very common problems the application is designed to deal with.
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14 responses to “Download a Grab Bag of Free System Tools”
This is a great list – there’s a few here I’ll try.
Very cool Liam – go for it!
I bet you thought you had lost me or something, actually I’ve been snowed under with assignments.(aren’t any statistic and charting experts out there willing to help are there?)
Just looked at your list Bill, and I note that I have all of those apps except for the two that you mention for advanced users, something about those two words that scares me off somewhat.
The reason I noted those two apps as “advanced users” is, one wrong click and it could lead to an non bootable system. Now that would suck!
Good luck with the stats and graphs.
Great information Bill as I always enjoy reading your articles. I have used a few of these myself and have the pro versions of Glary Utilities and Advanced SystemCare. Never have tried the CCleaner but have seen it mentioned in alot of places.
Keep up the good work.
Thank you Mike – I appreciate your kind words.
I run the pro version of Glary as well, but I run CCleaner each time I click out of the Net, simply because it takes just a few seconds. As well, CCleaner incorporates a very mild Registry cleaner – good for those that are new to computing.
I use most of these here is a favorite of mine not on your list Smart Defrag http://www.iobit.com/iobitsmartdefrag.html
I’ve heard good things about this app but haven’t tried it. Just downloaded and will take it for a spin,
Great list of free system tools sir Bill. I currently used some of them. But I used Ccleaner for junk cleaning. Mild registry cleaner of Ccleaner, less problem in that part. Glary Utilities one a week with a very old NTREGOPT for registry defragmenter. I rely more on registry defragmenter than registry cleaner. And for my setting tweaks I used TweakUI. But I used FreshUI before and its really really good. But I used NLite on XP installation disc so some tweak is already apply during installation.
Interesting list of apps. I hadn’t heard of NTREGOPT – checked it out (looks very cool). NLite is another app I’m not familiar with – I can see a big advantage in installing Windows using NLite
Thanks for this.
Great list Bill. I will add these to the memory stick I carry when I go back home and perform the family “tech support” as I usually am asked to do.
Thanks Mike – appreciate you dropping by.
I have tried everyone of these apps with the exception of RunAlyzer… Checking it out now! Looks quite interesting and digs deep…
RunAlyzer is a great app – designed for guys like you and me.