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Super Optimize 1.4 Review

Super Optimize from Power App Tools promises to optimize your Android smartphone with a variety of tools, including memory optimizer, cache cleaner, uninstaller, and battery manager. Some of its tools simply give you a different way of accessing features your phone already has, such as brightness and volume controls. But at least a quarter of all Windows freeware merely simplifies access to system utilities, so what works for Windows also does for Android, right? Not necessarily: Linux-based Android does some things differently, such as working its resources and freeing them up as needed, instead of keeping them in reserve. Super … Read more

Windows 7 Manager 4.2.4 Review

Windows 7 Manager is an all-in-one system cleaner, tweaker, and maintenance tool that, among other capabilities, incorporates a wide range of "fixes," many of them built into Windows, yet tucked away in odd corners that make them difficult for ordinary users to access. That's sometimes because inexperienced users who misuse a fix or a tweak can cause more problems than they started with. Windows 7 Manager is a good example: It probably packs more features than any tool of its type we've seen thus far. Yet with so many things to run, inexperienced users can end … Read more

Process Lasso 6.0.3.4 Review

At Download.com, we've long recommended the excellent Mark Russinovich-created and Microsoft-supplied Process Explorer freeware, which provides scads of info on all of your Windows PC processes and options for managing them. Well, Process Lasso is like the peanut butter for Process Explorer's chocolate. It lets users set default priorities and CPU affinities for specific processes, establish rules for how processes behave, and also create alerts and automatic events for when processes misbehave or use too much memory. The interface is outdated and not beginner friendly, but Process Lasso offers very useful features in a powerful little package.… Read more

TuneUp Utilities 2013 Review

In the sea of PC optimization software, it can be hard to find the right set of tools to keep your computer in tip-top shape. Luckily, TuneUp Utilities is here. A 16-year veteran in the field of Computer Cleanup, TuneUp offers the latest revision of their famous TuneUp Utilities 2013, with some new tools and major fixes that promise to improve the performance of any PC. The best part is that TU gives you full functionality with the 15-day trial.

TuneUp Utilities installation is relatively painless while taking up no more than 80MB of disk space. The program does require … Read more

Fine-tune your Mac and access hidden settings with Cocktail for Mac

Everything on a Mac looks so polished on the outside that it may become unclear how to fine-tune settings under the hood of its graphical interface. Cocktail for Mac allows you to access an impressive number of useful tweaks and enhancements without entering a single line of code.

Cocktail for Mac can manually trigger maintenance scripts, optimize inactive RAM manually or periodically, toggle Spotlight indexing for chosen drives, force special startup modes, and access a lot of the hidden Finder and core app settings, to name just a few options. By "hidden," we mean those settings that are … Read more

Improve PC performance

Aro 2013 promises to speed up your PC by performing an all-around cleanup. It will scour through your machine looking for junk files, broken or missing Registry keys, and security vulnerabilities. The look and feel of the original Aro is there, but be warned that this is a different beast than its predecessor.

To start off with some good changes, installing and removal is a breeze, a huge improvement over the 2012 version that we very much appreciated. The bad news is, Aro 2013 now limits its free trial to fixing only the first 50 errors (previously 100). This is … Read more

SpeedUpMyPC 2013 cleans and tweaks new and old computers.

Regular cleaning helps keep your PC running like new, but it's not enough: you need speed. UniBlue's SpeedUpMyPC 2013 with Registry Booster not only purges junk files and defragments your PC's registry, on demand or on schedule, but its Active Speed Tools can tweak nearly any PC's performance. For example, its CPU Manager keeps runaway processes from using up available system resources, while the Start Menu Software Accelerator launches your apps quicker. Of course, you can also deselect any tool you don't want to run or any item you don't want to clean, as … Read more

Q&A: MacFixIt Answers

MacFixIt Answers is a feature in which I answer Mac-related questions e-mailed in by our readers.

This week, readers wrote in with questions about cleaning up a Mac to keep it optimized, external drive permission errors, increasing the number of recent documents stored in the system, and options for triple-booting OS X with Linux and other operating systems. I welcome views from readers, so if you have any suggestions or alternative approaches to these problems, please post them in the comments!

Question: How to clean up a Mac to keep it optimized MacFixIt reader Angel asks:

How can I get … Read more

Boost your PC's memory with Wise Memory Optimizer

When your PC is misbehaving wouldn't it be easier to press just one button instead of hitting Ctrl-Alt-Del to close programs? Wise Memory Optimizer will optimize your computer's memory on demand, as often as you like. You won't even have to close any programs.

This program's interface is very simple and neat. It graphs your system's memory on a pie chart so you know how much memory you're using and how much free memory you have. There is a large green button you need to click to optimize your memory usage. There are also … Read more

Expect frustration from Faster Downloader

There are so many easy ways to download streaming media these days that we find absolutely no reason to bother with a program that's the least bit complicated. For that reason, we recommend that users who want to download video and music from streaming sites (where that's permitted, of course) look for something other than Faster Downloader to do it with. This unintuitive program left us scratching our head and wondering why the creators had so needlessly complicated what should be a simple process.

Faster Downloader boasts that it's "fully integrated" with Firefox and Internet … Read more