Tag Archives: powerful

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

Aldi Bot – Build A Botnet For $15!

imagePsst – wanna build a Botnet – one that can launch a DDoS attack, steal passwords saved in Firefox, steal passwords for Pidgin, remotely execute any file, or use a victim’s computer as a proxy?

No big deal if you haven’t a clue when it comes to the intricacies of coding, or programming – doesn’t matter if you don’t have any hacking skills – if you’ve got just €10 (about $15) to spare, you can buy Aldi Bot …..

Screen shot published by the malware creator.

…. and, create your very own Botnet. Of course, you’ll need the underground forum addresses where this sly tool is available (no, you won’t get those here).

In an over the edge example of “let’s see how far I can push the envelope” – the kiddie script creator will provide hands on installation instruction for those who need it. According to researchers at GData, who discovered Aldi Bot –

“Chat logs, posted by the malware author, reveal that he actually provides personal assistance for the installation and implementation of the bots, even to malware rookies, so-called noobs, who do not have the slightest idea of how to work with the malicious tools. He even uses TeamViewer to make his customers happy and ready to attack.”

Aldi Bot in action.

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In case you might think that this type of do-it-yourself malware creation kit is a new or an unusual phenomenon; it isn’t. Downloadable malicious programs, like this, have been available for some time. Examples of DIY malware kits we’ve covered here in the past, include –

Facebook Hacker

T2W – Trojan 2 Worm (Constructor/Wormer)

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Constructor/YTFakeCreator

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BitTera.C

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I find it discouraging that wannabe cyber crooks, whose technical skills never got past the thumb-texting stage, have such ready access to such powerful malware creation tools. A rather sad reflection on the lack of resources available to the law enforcement community.

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Filed under Cyber Crime, Cyber Criminals, Hackers, Kiddie Script, Malware Alert, Windows Tips and Tools

Nemo Documents – A Powerful Free Document Manager

My Hard Drives can be a bit of a “black hole” when I’m trying to find a particular document. With literally thousands of documents – Word files, PowerPoint presentations, Excel Work sheets, not to mention, images, videos, and more, spread all over, I occasionally feel as if I’m lost in space.

Stepping into this void for me, is a recent find – Nemo Documents, a powerful freebie document manager from Danish open source developer IOLA.

With Nemo Documents running, I can now view all of my Word docs (for example), in an easy to read “Calendar” view as well as a number of additional file formats. Better yet, the program integrates with Windows Desktop Search so I can locate files based on phrases within the documents, file types, modification dates, and so on.

Setup is easy, and on the first run the program will audit customary file locations in order to index files.

Click on any graphic to expand to original size.

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In my particular case, and perhaps yours as well, most of my documents are not located in the “usual suspect” places so, the ability to add locations is critical.

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File support is fairly robust – including support for Word, Excel, PowerPoint, PDF, Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, images, video files, Google docs, and many more. You can choose which files to add and index, from the Settings menu.

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Calendar view – selectable Day, Week, Month, Year.

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Focusing on an individual  file allows you to view specific properties.

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The “List” view provides additional file references.

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The application can be run in a number of alternative languages including – Chinese, Danish, Dutch, French, German, Hebrew, Japanese, Lithuanian, Russian, and Portuguese.

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Since Nemo Documents adds an application icon to the Windows notification area, direct access is quick and easy.

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System requirements: Windows XP, Vista, Win 7.

There is a version available for Linux here.

Download at: Developer’s site (nemo-docs.com)

Nemo Documents is not an application for everyone, but for those users who have to deal with a sizeable number of diverse document files, Nemo can certainly make the job much easier.

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Filed under downloads, File Management, Freeware, Linux, Open Source, Productivity Software, Software, System Utilities, Timesaving Tips, Utilities, Windows Tips and Tools

Ditch Facebook – Go Private With Free Flink12

imageThere are 600 Million plus, active Facebook users, but I must confess – I’m not one of the active users. It’s true, I do have a Facebook page but, I use it sparingly.

Since many software developers are now into the – “visit our Facebook page, click on the Like button, and we’ll give you ……….” school of marketing,  I use my Facebook account to meet this manipulative requirement.

My list of grievances with Facebook is a long one, but privacy, or more precisely, the lack of privacy, overrides all other concerns – I’ll leave the considerable security issues aside, for the moment.

I’ve always found it difficult to get a handle on Facebook’s constantly shifting definition of privacy and, it’s difficult to understand and hard to apply, personal privacy restrictions.

Maybe I’m old fashioned, but I just can’t get my head around the idea of putting private information out into the ether of the Internet. On the other hand, there are those who love the Facebook experience, and it seemingly plays an important role in their lives. I think it’s safe to say, that this is a market which will continue to grow exponentially.

Some people see this as inevitable progress – but I’m not one of them. Instead, my definition of progress in this market, is the development of private social networking platforms. Platforms that are designed specifically for friends, families, and  work teams, to privately share, discuss, organize photos, videos, etc., – all in a single easy to use private environment.

One such platform that caught my attention recently is Flink12. It was a “no-brainer” really. An application that can set out in a sentence, or three, an approach to privacy that meets my requirements, is sure to grab my attention.

Here’s what Flink12 has to say on social sharing privacy:

“Privacy first” is the highest priority at Flink12. This approach ensures that your personal information will remain completely secure. With no privacy settings to manage, your information is automatically safe. Personal information will not indexed on the web by search engines. You decide when, where and how much of your life you want to share and with whom.”

Since Flink12 passed my first test, I went on to the next set of questions – did it meet my requirements for functionality? Did it meet my requirements for usability? It did in both cases – and, the following list of features was very convincing.

Fast facts:

Safe & Private – Our “Privacy first” approach ensures that your personal information will remain private. Your information will not be indexed on the web by search engines. We designed Flink12 at its roots to be “udderly” private. Users have complete control.

Easy Photo Sharing – Easy to upload, free, fast, private photo sharing. Caption your photos. Comment on photos. There are several options for sharing each photo and privatizing comments. It’s truly the best way to share photos and comments.

Private Texting/Chat – Free instant communication one-on-one between you and any person in your Flink. Texting is free on Flink12.

Blogging – Write about your personal thoughts and activities as often as you wish. Blogging on Flink12 is quick, easy and fun. There are several options for sharing of blogs and comments amongst your flinks.

Friend Mapping – See where your friends are anytime, worldwide. You have a choice to show your location to your Flink friends or not. Very useful for travelers or friends and relatives across the globe or meeting up with friends for coffee.

Playful Icon Themes – Never forget to play. Our icons are all about expressing yourself in a playful way. Flink icons are uniquely humorous and allow you to quickly share your mood, health, activities and events using preset text or by entering your own text. Choices of several fun themes such as Moms & Babies, Sports Fans, Diva’s, Teens and Pets are coming soon.

Web & Apps – You can join and update on any platform- website, iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch and Android and you only have to post it once- Flink 12 updates seamlessly on all platforms.

Alerts – There are several options for notifications or alerts from your friends. On mobile, MOO’s and cowbells let you know when your friends have posted fresh news.

For more information and to sign up – visit the developer’s site: Flink12

Bottom line:

Flink12 is a technology rich application; full of powerful features – many more than I’ve been able to cover in this short review. At the same time, Flink12 has been designed for speed and simplicity.

If you’re into social networking and privacy is a concern, then take Flink12 for a test drive – I think you’ll be glad you did.

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Filed under Cloud Computing, Connected Devices, downloads, Freeware, Interconnectivity, Mobile Applications, Networking, Peer to Peer, Privacy, Social Blogging, social networking, Social Networks, Software, Windows Tips and Tools

Auslogics BoostSpeed 5 – A Powerful “One Stop” Optimization And Maintenance Suite

imageIf you’re a regular visitor to this site you’re more likely than not, a high end power user. As such, you know that simple maintenance, practiced regularly, using the right tools, will keep a PC running smoothly for years.

Better yet, you’re proficient at putting together a toolbox of free system applications designed to correct performance issues that negatively impact your computing experience.

Typical computer users on the other hand, are much less likely to have the experience needed to identify the common problems that have impact on a computer’s speed and behavior, and then match the problems with the appropriate free software solution.

Drilling down through complicated operating system structures to get maximum performance from an operating system, is generally outside the range of a typical computer users skill set.

So, average users, for the most part, need an “all-in-one” performance-tuning application designed specifically for this market segment. Preferably, an application that’s comprehensive – yet, “one click” simple. Not an easy task for a product developer – many have tried, but few have really been successful.

Auslogics, well known, to we geeky types, for its free Auslogics Disk Defrag 3.1, is one of those companies that has successfully managed to work within the confines of a “one click” simple solution by developing Auslogics BoostSpeed 5.

Auslogics BoostSpeed 5 can uncover bundles of issues that can impact a computer’s performance and reliability, and then correct identified problems – often, with just a few clicks of the mouse.

Let’s take a walkthrough to look at  just some of the powerful features which are available in  Auslogics BoostSpeed 5. Clicking on any screenshot will increase the size to the original.

Installation is simple, following which you will have the opportunity to run BoostSpeed 5 for the first time. On application launch, you will be presented with the following screen.

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Running a system scan, on day one of the test, pulled up the usual Registry errors, and gave me the opportunity to clean out junk files, broken shortcuts, and (most importantly for me), clean the Browser cache.

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Day 2 System scan results: It’s easy to see from this second manual scan, that crud builds up on a PC very quickly.

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Cutting back on crud accumulation is easy with BoostSpeed 5 though. Setting up an appropriate schedule to automatically handle cleanup and repair, is a snap with the built-in scheduler.

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One of the features in the application that caught my attention was the security advice pulled up by the System Advisor. The focus here is on security holes that an average user would lack the background, or experience, to consider.

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On the oft chance that the user makes an error while running a system applet – redemption is just a step away. The Rescue center can reverse changes in any of the applets shown in the following screen capture.

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If you prefer not to go the automatic route, an abundance of applets are available to analyze and repair, maintain and improve, and configure the operating system, as the following screen capture shows.

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Customizing Windows to get that “just you” look, couldn’t be easier. Virtually every Windows element can be customized.

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Since personal privacy is a major issue for many users, the addition of a disk wipe utility (plus a shredder utility), is a bonus.

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Manipulating Internet settings for best performance is generally a hit and miss operation – many applications which promise to boost performance simply don’t work.

BoostSpeed’s built-in Internet Optimizer did work – at least marginally. I suspect that a typical user might see a more robust difference than I did, since my connection was already heavily tweaked.

A user can chose to manually optimize the connection (not recommended), or preferably, sit back and have the applet do the heavy lifting.

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Finally, all application functions can be accessed from the “right click” context menu, which is reachable from the Taskbar icon as shown in the following screen capture.

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Fast facts:

System Scan

File Recovery

Disk Doctor

Disk Explorer

Disk Defrag

Registry Defrag

PC Disk Cleaner

Registry Cleaner

Internet Optimizer

Windows Tweak Manager

Track Eraser

Duplicate File Finder

File Shredder

Disk Wiper

Boot Time Startup Manager

Uninstall Manager

Service Manager

Task Manager

PC System Information

Task Manager Rescue Center

When I received an invitation to review Auslogics BoostSpeed 5, I wasn’t sure I could do it justice in a short review – the application’s features are so inclusive that it would take a small book to cover all the features, and the related benefits of each. It’s safe to say that this application provides virtually every tool and applet, that an average computer user should need.

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, you may find that Auslogics BoostSpeed 5 is worth its $49.95 purchase price.  If you’re not satisfied, Auslogics offers a full refund within 30 days of purchase.

BTW, a  single product license allows installation of the application on three personal PCs.

System requirements: Windows XP, Vista, Win 7  (32-bit & 64-bit).

Download a 15 day trial version at: the developer’s site – Auslogics.com

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Filed under 64 Bit Software, Auslogics, Computer Maintenance, Computer Tune Up Utilities, downloads, Integrated Tune Up Solutions, New Computer User Software Tools, Slow Computer, Software, Software Trial Versions, System Tweaks, System Utilities

Windows 7 and Vista Ultimate Windows Tweaker –

Ultimate Windows Tweaker is a freeware utility for tweaking and optimizing Windows Vista, and now Windows 7 –  both 32-bit, and 64-bit versions.

This small (235KB), program has a clean, easy to understand interface that gives you access to over 150 system settings, some of which are hidden, and others that are just hard to find. The interface is organized for easy navigation, and it is complete with detailed descriptions for easy reference.

The major benefit in using this type of tweaking application is the ease with which you can make changes to your system – without the drudgery of having to go through menu after menu, or manually editing the Registry to get the results you want.

However, as with any application that makes changes to your system, use caution and be sure to have a verified backup. Fortunately, Ultimate Windows Tweaker allows you to create a system-restore point before you make any changes.

The following screen captures should give you a good idea of what you can accomplish using Ultimate Windows Tweaker.

Personalization Tweaks. Click on any graphic to expand.

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System Performance Tweaks.

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Network Tweaks.

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Additional Tweaks.

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System Requirements: Windows 7, Vista – 32 and 64 Bit.

Bonus: Ultimate Windows Tweaker can easily be copied to a USB flash drive for portability.

Download at: The Windows Club

While this application is designed for advanced users, I see no reason why careful average users should have any problem tweaking their system using Ultimate Windows Tweaker.

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Filed under 64 Bit Software, downloads, Freeware, Geek Software and Tools, Portable Applications, Software, System Tweaks, System Utilities, USB, Windows 7, Windows Tips and Tools, Windows Vista

Tweak and Optimize Windows Settings with Free Fresh UI

Freshdevices’ Fresh UI is a powerful tool that allows you to configure and optimize your version of Windows – from Windows 95 (hard to believe this OS is still in use), through to Windows XP.

With Fresh UI’s simple interface you have the means to access literally hundreds of system settings – settings that you might otherwise have a hard time getting at.

Navigating through this application is easy since the interface is organized similar to Windows Explorer, complete with detailed descriptions for easy reference.

I have heard from some users that in their view, it was not always clear what outcome they could expect with some of the selections. On the other hand, most users seem to agree that the help file is fairly extensive, and easy to understand for those who have a reasonable knowledge of their operating system.

The major benefit in using this type of tweaking application is the ease with which you can make changes to your system, without the drudgery of having to go through menu after menu, or manually editing the Registry, to get the results you want.

However, as with any application that makes changes to your system, use caution, and be sure to have a verified backup.

FreshUI 2

Quick facts:

Customizing Windows User Interface (UI)

Optimizing system settings

Optimizing hardware settings

Customizing Windows application settings

Control user environment

System requirements: Windows XP/2000/NT/ 98/95/

Note: Free registration is required which will extend usage past 11 days. Fresh Devices will email you once or twice monthly with various offers regarding their other freeware. If you consider such activity as Spam, do not download this application.

Last updated: October 10, 2009

Download at: Download.com

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Filed under Freeware, Software, System Tweaks, System Utilities, Utilities, Windows Tips and Tools