Fiery Tech Tips

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Top 5 Important PC Tools


By Joseph Albanese

We are all looking for ways to maintain or improve our computer performance. These few programs are available to clean, defrag, scan, or in other ways increase your technological efficiency. Many people know of most of these programs, but hopefully you consider using them effectively and discover that they can really help out.

CCleaner:

CCleaner cleaning PC files

One of the top computer cleaning tools, CCleaner deletes temporary files, browser caches, system files, and certain application data in an easy-to-use manner. Available for download for Macs. Professional and Business versions cost money while standard version is free. Contains tools such as an uninstaller, startup program manager, system restore, and drive wipe. There are better programs out there, but these options are useful. When using the registry tool, be sure to make a backup as incorrect changes or deletions to the registry could cause problems. Only use if you know what you are doing regarding registry, though CCleaner does a good job of not messing anything up. I mostly delete browser temporary files and every so often some windows files.

Winpatrol:

Winpatrol startup manager program

Winpatrol allows disabling of programs that aren’t needed right away when a computer starts up.

Winpatrol is a program startup manager tool that makes it easier to manage programs that will autorun when you turn your computer on. Disabling programs like Skype or others that you normally don’t need right away that you could click on to open yourself without the program slowing your computer down is easy. You can re-enable it any time, or even set up a delayed startup. It even acts as a task manger, allowing you to end tasks quickly. It is a live guard as well, meaning if something is installed and requests starting when your computer starts, it notifies you and asks for approval. Sometimes, you don’t know what a program -or more likely, an extension or add-on- is that has been installed and you ish to look it up quickly. The PLUS version is offered that has a decent, one-time fee for unlimited copies. This version allows you to look up additional information about what Winpatrol is asking you regarding a program or extension and allows you to see if it is harmful or not. There are other features such adding or removing file types or services or cookies, but I use it mainly for managing startup programs and active tasks.

Avast!:

Avast! Antivirus software is not only one of the leading virus fighters, but it is also free and packed full of features. There are also keys found upon searching that will unlock full features without premium.

Avast! Antivirus software

Avast! boasts many features for battling various security threats.

It is intricate and customizable, yet simple to operate and covers a wide range of protection from various security threats. Unlike most antivirus programs, a subscription is not needed and Avast! is not a resource hog. If your computer comes with another program like Mcafee or Norton, keep using that unless you would like to switch to an equal protector like Avast!

Auslogics Disk Defragmenter: 

I have only recently discovered Auslogics programs and enjoy what I see. This is freeware that addresses many different utility problems such as disk cleanup. One that stood out is Auslogics Disk Defrag. This program, like all defragmenters including the built-in Windows one, moves files in a way that speeds up hard disk reading and writing which is important for performance. The simple and graphical interface and speed at which the program defrags is impressive and also allows the option of defragging certain files or folders.

Auslogics Disk Defragmenter

The interface clearly displays the fragmented areas and the percentage defragmented.

Slimdrivers:

Drivers are important pieces of software on a computer that allows different hardware to operate properly. Unfortunately, drivers and therefore the hardware require updates to be efficient. These updates are released by the manufacturer or distributer of the hardware, but often a computer won’t check for updates for all of the drivers except, perhaps, the graphics card. This is where Slimdrivers comes in. It analyzes your system and then checks the internet for new releases of updates for your drivers. It features options for downloading, installing, backing up, restoring, or deleting your drivers and has a simple interface.

Slimdrivers updates drivers and hardware.

Slimdrivers is a free program that keeps your drivers and hardware up-to-date.

There are many free and reliable programs that are needed to maintain a computer’s efficiency. Cnet offers many downloads with some being highly rated and used by many people. Check back for more must-have programs!

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This entry was posted on June 13, 2013 by in Top 5 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , .

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