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Summary:

PC performance optimization apps normally make me nervous, because they can mess with the registry and end up removing something I actually need. But my Windows desktop computer has been driving me insane recently, especially with its sluggish startup, so I decided to give TuneUp Utilities […]

TuneUp LogoPC performance optimization apps normally make me nervous, because they can mess with the registry and end up removing something I actually need. But my Windows desktop computer has been driving me insane recently, especially with its sluggish startup, so I decided to give TuneUp Utilities 2010 a shot.

The interface is well-organized and keeps things simple so the user can fix one set of problems at a time. Its five key functions are maintenance, performance, problem fixing, customization and something called “turbo mode.”

TuneUp Utilities Start Center

Maintain system: Maintenance addresses registry problems, removes orphaned shortcuts and unneeded files and moves data on the hard disk for optimal performance and defragmenting. Maintenance functions can run automatically or manually.

TuneUp Utilities maintenance
Increase performance: Analyzes system performance, Internet settings and visual effect settings for unused programs, identifies functions slowing down performance, and optimizes hardware and other settings.

Fix problems: Repairs frequent Windows problems and display errors, restores needed deleted files, reviews the hard drive for errors and improves running programs.

Customize Windows: Windows customizations can contribute to slow performance. This function helps customize Windows to your liking, while ensuring optimal performance.

Turbo mode: This new feature in the latest release lets you configure the software so that when you need the computer to perform fast, you can quickly switch to Turbo mode, based on your customized options.

I knew I had some applications being loaded on startup that didn’t need to be there. But to go through them one-by-one would have been very time consuming. TuneUp Utilities simplifies this by listing all the startup programs by the program names — something you don’t get in Window’s System Configuration Utility’s startup list — and whether they’re necessary, optional or unnecessary.

TuneUp Utilities Startup Programs

Those identified as unnecessary are redundant startup applications, like iTunesHelper and Adobe Acrobat Quick Launch. Every startup program contains a description to help you judge whether to keep it or remove it from startup. I made the changes and it sped up my computer’s startup without any errors.

My newish computer had issues shortly after I received it, and TuneUp Utilities can only do so much in repairing performance. It performs best with computers that have had software installed and removed many times, something I haven’t done much of with my computer yet. In spite of this, I ran a performance benchmarking application before and after running TuneUp Utilities and it showed improvement.

I give TuneUp Utilities 2010 kudos for its simplicity and providing enough information so users can make informed decisions whether to make changes. It only recommended a couple of changes that I didn’t accept while I let it fix the rest. My computer has had no new problems after running the application for several weeks. We always must use caution when running performance applications like this, but TuneUp Utilities gives you what you need to make sound decisions. A full version of the app retails for $49.95, while an upgrade from earlier versions for $29.95, and a 30-day trial download is available.

Have you tried TuneUp Utilities? Did it speed up your computer?

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  1. Good article. But optimizing a PC is an oxymoron. Ultimately, I gave up and moved to OS X. No regrets.

  2. I’ve been using this since ’06 and can say it is a very solid product. Would recommend it to anyone.

  3. Seriously, this kind of review is just not a good idea.

    There are so many products of this kind out there and the ramifications of using one can be so dire that unless you dig DEEP technically a review saying anything other than “STAY AWAY” could really hurt your readers.

    Jus’ my two cents . . .

    Jeff Yablon
    President & CEO
    The Computer Answer Guy

  4. Will:

    I’m with you on the migration to the Mac OS. I made the move reluctantly but man am I glad that I did. Good bye to the hot fixes, buggy browser issues, etc.

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