Tag Archives: efficient

Free ToolWiz Care – The Competition Might Need To Worry

Toolwiz CareYou’ve heard it all before – this application “is a free tool set designed to speed up your PC and give your system full care”, or some variation of this. Occasionally, this statement might reasonably describe a freeware utility application – but, more often than not, hype is the operative word and user expectations are not met.

Toolwiz Care, described by the developers as “a free tool set designed to speed up your PC and give your system full care”, does not disappoint. This application is feature packed, and includes a wide range of tools that an average computer user should find powerful, efficient, and effective.

I’ve run with Toolwiz Care, off and on, for a month or so, and found that by and large, it lives up to the developer’s claims.

Installation is fast and very straightforward. The user may choose selected languages including –  English, Chinese, French, Hungarian, Korean, Polish, Spanish and Russian.

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First up is a quick system checkup – the “Checkup Settings” menu will allow you to set preference parameters as shown below. Clicking on any of the following screen  captures will expand the shot to its original size.

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On this run, 67 fixable issues were found. I’ll point out that since I normally run a tight lean test machine, I choose not to accept all of the recommended fixes.

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Next up, I took a peek at the “Speedup” applet. Again, I’ll point out that this test machine has been tweaked to the max so, you’ll notice that many of the suggestions for improvement will be “skipped” – the application has already determined this. On a typical machine however, I think an average user will benefit.

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The Tools menu is most impressive and, having run all of the available tools successfully, I have to give this feature set a huge “thumbs up”. Having quick access to such powerful tools, should be a major advantage for a typical user.

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The App Manager provides access to the Uninstall feature (not shown), but what I found most intriguing was, the listing of suggested freeware software for the user’s consideration. As it turns out, virtually all of the suggested software has received high marks, in previous reviews, here on this site.

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For those who like to run in a virtual environment while surfing the Internet, the developer’s have kept you in mind with the inclusion of a “one click simple” virtual “Time Freeze” component.

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I’ll go offside just for a moment. You may have noticed that an “Eye Care” feature can be selected which is designed to remind those of us who spend much of the day starting at a Monitor, to take a short break. The following screen capture is an example of the 2/3 reminders launched, as I was writing this post.

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Finally, if you choose to auto-start this application on Windows startup – the application will place a floating toolbar (see below), on the desktop for convenience.

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Fast Facts:

Time Freeze – Keeps your system safe and protect your computer from unwanted changes.

Eyes Care – Protects your eyes with scheduled warning

Virtual Safe – Creates a virtual safe which works like a regular drive where you can store files. The files stored in it are encrypted and cannot be accessed without the right password.

Game Booster – Concentrates every system resource for gaming purpose. It temporarily shuts background processes and other unnecessary Windows services & cleans out the RAM.

Password Manager – Helps you create secure passwords that are extremely difficult to crack or guess. Also it can help you to manage your password, account and other private information.

Password Generator – Creates highly secure passwords with upper and lower case letters, numbers and punctuation symbols.

Duplicate File Finder – Allows you to scan all duplicate files in specified path. You can remove some of them and free up your disk space.

File Undelete – Ensures recovery of data permanently deleted from the Recycle Bin or with the help of SHIFT + DELETE key.

Disk Doctor – Helps you to check your hard disk both in I/O access and file system and give you a full report for the checking.

Disk Cleaner – Cleans your hard disk from temporary files like those in the system temporary folder and the Recycle Bin.

Registry Cleaner – Makes the PC system more stable by cleaning out the bad Registry entries.

Registry Backup and Restore – Helps you to backup or restore your Registry with a simple click

Registry Defrager – Rebuilds PC’s Registry, making the entire system run quicker and smoother.

Privacy Cleaner – Protects the user’s privacy by deleting all activity history and surfing traces.

Fast Defrag – Defragments the hard drive with it’s smart engine, keep the PC running efficiently and prevent the formation of other fragmented files.

Checkup Module – Provides a full report of user’s PC system and allows the user to fix all problems with one simple click.

Startup Report – Provides a easy to read report that shows the start-up time of user’s system. It offers a detailed list of the processes loaded since booting.

Startup Optimizer – Allows the user to disable or delay the loading of any startup entries. It also provides the users with suggestions of standard processes.

System requirements: Windows XP (32 bit), Vista, Win 7, Win 8 (32 bit and 64 bit). I tested this application on Windows 8 Consumer Preview.

Languages: English, Chinese, French, Hungarian, Korean, Polish, Spanish and Russian languages.

Download at: ToolWiz Care

Credit where credit is due – a big “thank you” to my good buddy Rick Robinette over at What’s On My PC, for turning me on to this application.

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Filed under 64 Bit Software, Computer Tune Up Utilities, downloads, Freeware, Software, System Utilities

Is Linux Only For Techies?

Currently, I’m running a dual boot system – Windows 8 Developer and Ubuntu Linux – so much for the rumor that Microsoft has locked out dual booting Linux on Windows 8.

In fact, I’ve been running dual boot systems for years – various flavors of Windows, and Linux. I wouldn’t, for example, do my online banking in any OS other than Linux. So, I’m comfortable with the idea that I can offer my opinion on how “hard” or how “easy” it is, to run with Linux.

I like to think that my opinion is an “educated” opinion. An opinion based on long term usage and direct observation. So, it definitely burns my ass when I read fluff from Windows bloggers who pass judgment on Linux and who, without the benefit of personal knowledge, go into a “let’s trash Linux” mode.

In 30+ years of real world computing,  I have met only a handful of techies who have an accurate understanding of how a typical user computes – how a typical user experiences computing. An understanding based on – here’s that terrible word again – observation.

Instead, the “I just know” phrase, as to how a typical user computes, is often offered in place of evidence based opinion. A follow up query such as “OK, but HOW do you know?”, invariably leads to a shake of the head and an “I just know that’s all” rapid response.

This throwaway response puts me in mind of the years I spent in management consulting, when a “how would your customers rate your service delivery” query for example, would invariably be met with a “Oh hey – terrific, terrific”, comeback.

We’ll skip ahead to  the inevitable “How do you know?”, and I’m sure you can guess the answer – “we just know”. More often than not, a series of customer centric focus groups would reveal that a company had a massively misplaced perception of how customers really viewed service delivery. I refer to this only to illustrate the point that perception does not always line up with reality – despite the often quoted “perception is reality”.

One particular “I just know” statement, I hear repeatedly from fellow techies is – Linux is only for techies. But, is it? Nor from where I sit it’s not. I suspect that this fallacy is based on (amongst a host of misperceptions), the mistaken view that Linux is primarily a command line driven operating system. Something it decidedly is not.

Sure, if a user is a command line fanatic in Windows (as a DOS 1 veteran, I understand the attraction), then that preference can easily be carried over into Linux. But, that’s not how a typical user interacts with an operating system – not in Windows and not in Linux.

Ubuntu Linux for example, is built around an intuitive point and click user interface which is similar in layout, and function, to Windows – including Windows XP. Certainly more instinctive, and vastly more functional, than the new Windows 8 Metro GUI shown below.

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To be fair – the classic Windows Desktop is accessible through the Metro GUI in Windows 8. Here’s a screenshot of my classic Desktop running in Windows 8.

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Contrast the Windows Desktop shown above, with the following OLD Linux Desktop layout (March 2007). Point and click simple – similar in layout and functionality to the previously shown Windows Desktop.

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Here are a couple of Ubuntu Desktops I currently run. Simple, functional, and efficient.

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Alternative Linux Desktops are readily available, so that a transition to a Linux based operating system can be more or less, a seamless move for an average user. Admittedly, there are some issues new Linux users will encounter in making a change from Windows. But, these are essentially “where do I click” issues – not issues that require techie based skills.

A number of alternative Desktops are shown below.

Enlightenment

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Fluxbox

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KDE

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There’s no doubt Windows and Linux are not the same operating system under the hood. But, average users don’t look under the hood of an OS – not in Windows – not in Linux.

Average users simple want to point and click, and Linux based operating systems, by and large, allow them to do just that. To propose otherwise is disingenuous and suggests an uninformed basis for comparison.

If you’d like to get an handle on just how easy it is to run Ubuntu, you can download Ubuntu and run it alongside your current Windows system – just as if it was a normal Windows application. It’s a fabulous way to get a taste of Linux. Did I mention that it’s free?

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Filed under 64 Bit Software, downloads, Freeware, Linux, Open Source, Operating Systems, Ubuntu, Windows 8