Quirky application needs forgiving user

Lock up and hide this seemingly useful, but ultimately flawed application.

On the surface, Advanced File Lock seems to fulfill its purpose well enough, but we found enough quirks--and one feature that just didn't work--to make us want to bypass the application altogether.

The interface appears clean and simple, but we would have preferred direct Windows Explorer integration. Especially with the proprietary file-selection mechanism, which breaks standard Windows file selection conventions and makes the interface feel clunky. Most of the functionality worked without issue, and the capability to easily hide and show files was nice. Unfortunately, you can't lock AND hide files, so which was a usability annoyance. The last notable feature was "Clean Free Space," which should prevent the recovery of any previously deleted files in your drive's free space. But that wasn't enough to save this app from its fatal flaw, the broken "Self Extractable File" functionality, which deletes your source file even when it doesn't successfully create the output file.

Excepting the broken feature and the interface's quirkiness, there were no stability issues during our testing. The features of this 30-day trial don't appear to be limited, and it is mostly nag-free. Installation was simple, but icons were placed on the desktop and in the start menu without asking. Uninstallation required a trip to Add/Remove programs, or to the install directory. With the quirky interface and the broken feature resulting in data-loss, this application is currently NOT recommended. There are other applications with similar, if not identical, features and the tighter Explorer integration Advanced File Lock is missing.

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