System Mechanic – A One Stop Pit Stop for Computer Maintenance

Life is full of the inevitable – that’s just the way it is. One such inevitable occurrence is – a computer running a Windows based operating system will slow down over time.

Most Windows users, at one time or another, will be faced with this common occurrence – a misbehaving machine which is no longer the speed demon it once was; slow to start up, and operating at less than maximum efficiency.

The net result? Let me give you a couple of quotes from a recent study published by the Customer Experience Board

“The reality is that numerous, persistent problems are troubling most computer users, creating unnecessary anguish and anxiety as a result.”

“Digitally dependent users are getting fed up and frustrated with the current state of computer related stress, and clearly looking for a better way to address and reduce it.”

But, let’s face facts; PCs don’t slow down without a reason. All computers have characteristic operating patterns that lead to predictable, but preventable, issues.

The key is – proper maintenance. Proper maintenance, practiced regularly, can keep a Windows based PC running smoothly, and at peak performance, for years.

Part of what we do here regularly is: we seek out free, quality applications, that help users identify the most common problems that have impact on a computer’s speed and behavior, and then match the problems with the appropriate free software solution.

So does this type of approach work for an average user? Not according to my friends, it doesn’t. Most of my computing friends, who are typical users, do not read my articles.

The most common reasons I hear are “it’s just too complicated”, “even the free tools you recommend are hard for me to understand”, “I don’t have the time, or the patience, to follow your advice”, and more.

So what have I taken away from this? I’ve come to the conclusion, that in today’s more complex computing age, most average users, like my friends, do not have the skill set required to drill down through complex structures to correct performance issues that negatively impact their computing experience.

Not surprisingly then, most typical users that I meet, including my friends, run computers that underperform in virtually all areas. They could get so much more out of their system, if they only knew how. And that brings me to System Mechanic.

System Mechanic is an overwhelmingly inclusive application that encompasses virtually every tool, and applet, that a computer user is ever likely to need to maintain and tweak a machine.

I kid you not when I tell you System Mechanic has the ability to carry out literally hundreds of tests that have the ability to uncover virtually every possible issue affecting a PC’s performance, and reliability.

Installation is simple, following which you will have the opportunity to run System Mechanic for the first time. On launch you will be presented with the following screen.

(All screen shots are taken from my test machines).

System analysis is extremely fast. The Quick Analysis took under a minute on my Windows 7 machine, and the Deep Analysis took less than 6 minutes on the same machine.

System Mechanic 4

System Mechanic 5

The following screen partially represents the results of a Deep Analysis

System Mechanic 6

Tool, tools, and more tools; each one designed to address specific system issues, are a strong point of System Mechanic – as the following screen capture illustrates.

Additionally, each tool is broken down into sub- categories, giving the user fine control over relative issues. This option is more for power users, in my view.

System Mechanic 7

System Mechanic 8

Fast facts:

ActiveCare – automatically and effortlessly fixes and maintains your PC during idle time, keeping your system running like new.

Optimize your PC for peak performance

Repair problems and errors, and prevent them from recurring

Clean up system clutter

Fix security vulnerabilities

Maintain reliability and speed

Cleans, defrags, & repairs registry

Accelerates PC startup 19 ways

Defrags & recovers orphaned RAM

Defrag

Complete low-level drive defrag

Turns off unused background programs

Perform dozens of performance boosting optimizations in one step

Straightforward actions to fix all problems or only those you want

PC Health Status Gadget for Windows 7 and Vista

Fix:

  • Registry errors and fragmentation
  • Unnecessary startup programs
  • Dangerous startup programs
  • Hard drive errors and fragmentation
  • Excessive system clutter
  • Broken shortcuts
  • Unoptimized internet speed settings
  • Security vulnerabilities
  • Antivirus and firewall issues
  • Old or missing registry backups

Conclusion: I have to admit I was astonished by the inclusiveness of this application. If an issue exists that System Mechanic does not have a tool for (either automatic, or manual), I’d be very surprised, and I looked – hard!

Despite the fact I keep my test machines well tuned (not quite as well as my principal machine, though), the two machines I tested System Mechanic on, ran noticeable faster after System Mechanic had its way with them.

If you’re an average user, disappointed with your computer’s performance, or you’re just tired of having to deal with reoccurring unexplained issues, System Mechanic is worth every penny of its $39.95 purchase price.

BTW, one copy of System Mechanic can be installed on up to three machines.

System requirements: Windows 7/Vista/XP (64 or 32-bit).

Download a trial version at: The developer’s site – (Iolo).

Update – May 9, 2010: Reader, Mike, has advised me this morning, Iolo currently has a limited time special offer – both System Mechanic and Search and Recover (combined value $90), for $39.95. For access to this special offer go here.

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21 Comments

Filed under Cleaning Your Computer, Computer Maintenance, downloads, Hard Drive Tools, Registry Cleaners, Slow Computer, Software, Software Trial Versions, System Tweaks, System Utilities, Utilities, Windows 7, Windows Tips and Tools, Windows Vista, Windows XP

21 responses to “System Mechanic – A One Stop Pit Stop for Computer Maintenance

  1. abhijit

    used it for three months………….a very good interface and and maintainance tool…………..but its antivirus need to be improved
    ( hope you review 4 that)……………………………………………………………………………thanks bill………………..

    • Bill Mullins

      Hey Abhijit,

      It’s only System Mechanic Pro that includes an AV – not the standard version (this is the version I tested).

      In my view security, should be left to those companies who specialize in this area. I don’t see the benefit of adding an AV to a tune up application. Trying to do too much, almost always leads to poor performance.

      Good to hear from you.

      Bill

  2. Bill,

    After reading this review, I just may have to break down and purchase this. From what I am reading here and on their site, has me sold. I’ve heard of System Mechanic (for years) and always avoided it thinking it was another app that would slow down my PC… Will definitely be giving this a try.

    Rick

    • Bill Mullins

      Hi Rick,

      It takes a lot to impress guys like you and me. But i have to admit, this one blew my mind.

      Thanks for stopping by.

      Bill

  3. Liam O' Moulain

    Hi Bill,

    Just the thing I’ve been looking for.

    At the very least I will download the trial version.

    Thanks.

    Liam

    • Bill Mullins

      Hi Liam,

      That’s a good idea. I think you’ll be very impressed.

      Good to hear from you on this rainy Saturday.

      Bill

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  6. Ahmed Helmi

    Hi Bill,,,
    thanks for this helpfull article iam downloading the free trial right now and who knows imight buy it and uninstall COMODO System Cleaner and Glary Utilities.
    every day u find very good products indeed to help us ^_^
    thanks for the effort u put into this !

    • Bill Mullins

      Hey Ahmed,

      Always a pleasure to hear from you.

      I think you’ll find this application to be very powerful, and highly effective. It’s not often that I recommend commercial software, but sometimes it’s the right thing to do.

      Best,

      Bill

  7. Ranjan

    Hi Bill,
    Cool! Gonna check this out..
    But one thing i always wonder about the defrag thing.. There’re just too many defragger out there..
    Don’t you think using multiple utilities to defrag may decrease the drive’s health as each tool has its own set of algorithms?
    Well that’s my thought.. Pls correct me if i’m wrong.. 🙂

    • Bill Mullins

      Hey Ranjan,

      Interesting observation on Defraggers.

      Can’t see how using multiple apps can impact a HD’s health though. HD heads move, or they don’t. How they move, seems to me, would have more impact on the actuator arm, and not the platters. Regardless, I just can’t see undue mechanical wear and tear being specifically caused by using multiple Defraggers.

      Good tech question though.

      Bill

  8. kingpin

    Hi Bill,
    Thanks for the post,yes the IOLO AV is a good for nothing but maybe the system mechanic from PC Tools is also worth a look too.

    • Bill Mullins

      Hey Kingpin,

      This PC Tools product is a Registry cleaner only. As well, the trial version only corrects 6 Registry errors – I dislike trial applications like this. They’re a total waste of time.

      As always, I appreciate the suggestion though.

      Bill

  9. Hi Bill
    If you go to the following link you can get for a limited time.
    > System Mechanic
    PLUS
    > Search & Recover
    (a $40 value)
    both for $39.95 and use (mothersday) as the coupon code and its $34.97 total

    http://www.iolo.com/landing/?pid=41FE2906-46D0-421A-8848-A997DA302990&utm_source=linkshare&utm_medium=banners&utm_campaign=SM_SRfree_landing

    • Bill Mullins

      Thanks Mike. Great information.

      I’ve just adjusted the post accordingly.

      Bill

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  11. Dave

    Hi Bill, thanks for a great review of System Mechanic. I think I’m finally going to break down and try one of these types of programs. I’ve seen several commercials lately about PC Matic by PC Pit Stop, any ideas how this compares to System Mech?

    Also, Best Buy is offering Sys Mech Pro for $19.99 at http://www.buy.com/retail/product.asp?sku=206656534, hence the reason I’m doing some research.

    Thanks again,
    Dave

    • Bill Mullins

      Hi Dave,

      I can’t comment on PC Pitstop’s PC Matic; frankly, I hadn’t heard of it until your email. I can however, reaffirm what I said in the review of System Mechanic – it is the best program of this type I’ve ever tested. In fact, I installed it on my principal home machine, and given the number of applications I regularly test, that in itself is a bit unusual.

      The Best Buy offer at $19.99 is definitely a “Best Buy”. If I remember correctly, I paid about $40. Drat! 🙂

      Best,

      Bill

  12. Dave

    Thanks Bill,

    In my previous note I said the $19.99 was from Best Buy, it’s actually from Buy.com (too much going on at once). Sorry for any confusion.

    So far the trial version seems to be working OK on one of my computers, but on the computer I’m having the most trouble with (Vista), it caused a memory dump and shutdown as soon as I installed it. Had to use a recovery point to get it back up, but hope to give it another try.