The data on your hard disk becomes fragmented over time, slowing access and wasting disk space. The defragmentation tool built into Windows does a fine job, but no one should be surprised that we think there's room for improvement. IObit's Smart Defrag is a freeware disk defragmentation utility that offers various improvements over the Windows tool, including what is described as "the world's fastest defragmentation engine." That's probably enough for many readers; with hard disks in terabyte territory, fast isn't just good, it's critical. We've used Smart Defrag many times, and … Read more
BlueSprig, one of the newer PC utility developers on the block, is today pushing out full versions of its JetBoost and JetClean apps, both of which launched in beta earlier this year.
Tipping the scales at around 3MB each, JetBoost and JetClean are meant to be lightweight, easy-to-use utilities that can speed up and clean out your computer with minimal input.
At a click, JetBoost scans your PC and selectively halts active processes and services in order to boost your performance. You can choose to optimize your computer's performance for work or gaming, or you can manually halt processes … Read more
The folks at IObit have just released version 5 of their highly rated Advanced SystemCare program, and it still packs a punch.
Now compatible with both 32- and 64-bit systems, and dressed in a slightly improved user interface, Advanced SystemCare 5 is a great all-in-one PC utility that can scan, repair, and optimize many aspects of your system. Choose between Quick Care and Deep Care modes, depending on how invasive you want to get (and how much time you have). Also, optimize performance with the improved Turbo Boost mode.
New to version 5 is the Active Boost function, which monitors … Read more
Over time, the Windows Registry becomes fragmented. It can slow down your PC if it becomes bad enough. Defragmenting the Registry makes it more compact, much like your hard drives. Of course, it's not as easy as that when you're dealing with the Registry, since errors can damage your system. You need a tool specifically designed for the job. Ainvo Registry Defrag is a free utility that automatically defragments your Registry on startup, either once or every time, depending on how you set it up.
Ainvo Registry Defrag opened with a simple dialog page explaining the next step, … Read more
Regular defragmentation keeps your disks tidy and avoids the big, disruptive defrag jobs later on. The defragmentation utility in Windows does a pretty good job, so why would you need an aftermarket defrag tool like Puran Defrag Free Edition? Well, Puran is easier to program to run automatically, even in the background. Puran also defragments your PC's boot sectors for faster start-up, and its Intelligent Optimizer boosts your system's speed, according to the developers. It can also defragment selected files or folders only and make exclusions by file and folder or wild card. There's even a command … Read more
Diskeeper 2011 automatically takes care of hard-disk fragmentation as it occurs, making the manual defragmenters we're all accustomed to a thing of the past. For any Windows users experiencing a lag in hard-disk performance, this hassle-free tool is a fantastic option.
Shortly after installation, Diskeeper analyzes all the volumes on your computer. The data it collects is used as a baseline for the Performance Reports it generates from that point on. These reports let you know how many fragments the program has eliminated as well as how, exactly, it has improved your PC's performance. While most users won'… Read more
Windows 7 automatically defragments your primary hard drive in a process that runs quietly in the background. However, if you'd like to have all new drives you plug in be defragmented as well, it's going to require a little input from you.
Step 1: Open the Disk Defragmenter from the Start menu by typing "disk defrag" in the Run box (shown below). You can always navigate to the actual program from Start by selecting All Programs > Accessories > System Tools > Disk Defragmenter.
Step 2: Click the "Configure Schedule" button to open up … Read more
WinZip System Utilities Suite offers a one-stop shop for optimizing, defragging, and generally cleaning out your system--and it does a pretty great job, adding extras that will come in handy whenever you need to perform routine maintenance. The interface smartly mimics many of the utilities in this genre--with various tools on the left, and the main window showing the options for each tool--making it easy to clean each area of your system quickly.
Like many modern system utilities, WinZip offers the option to be as involved with the process as you want to be. From the Home screen, you can … Read more
There are plenty of downloadable defrag utilities to choose from, but it's hard to beat the ease of use and helpful extras in IOBit's Smart Defrag.
With this utility you can quickly analyze your hard drive to check the level of defragmentation before committing to a scan. The interface shows you different colored blocks representing fragmented files, frequently used files, and more, with a helpful key to show what each colored block represents.
When you're ready to pull the trigger, you can choose from a straight defragmentation (fastest), or have Smart Defrag perform either a fast or &… Read more
Drive Genius is a hard-working hard-drive utility from longtime Mac developers Prosoft Engineering, with the honorable distinction of being employed at the Apple Store Genius Bar as part of their ProCare Yearly Tune Up service.
The interface of Drive Genius shares some similarities with that of its data-recovery sister program Data Rescue: you navigate through a 3D "tool arena," a sort of virtual lazy Susan of hard-drive tasks that's fast and fluid enough to not be annoying (and it's actually kind of fun). You choose from six primary tasks, Information (with detailed readouts on S.M.… Read more