Sick PC? Call the PC Doctor | Download Product Review - CNET Download.com

Sick PC? Call the PC Doctor

Clean, optimize, and protect your system with this bundle of fee utilities.

Kingsoft PC Doctor is a free bundle of system protection and maintenance utilities. It includes tools to clean, protect, and optimize your browser, operating system, registry, and data. It's by Kingsoft, a Chinese software company, and some of the documentation seems to have been translated by machine. For instance, the software offered to scan our system to "find out what damage your PC health." We're always leery when we see glaring errors in translation since they're so easy to avoid and suggest a lack of attention to detail that can show up in more critical areas. However, PC Doctor seemed to be an effective solution to PC maintenance needs.

Our first scan turned up three "Abnormal" items: We hadn't yet scanned for Trojans; shared system resources; and "Danger Detected." While starting a Trojan scan took care of the first issue and clicking Ignore handled the second one, we couldn't find any information about the so-called danger. The scan log went by too quickly to be sure, but we did see something about "excessive trash," when we rescanned several times. Clicking Repair initiated the program's Windows optimization scan. It informed us that "IE searches are exceptional," though not in a good way but more of a search engine hijack sort of way. The Vul Fix tab scanned our system for vulnerabilities, finding none; neither did the Trojan scan. The Plugin Cleaner tool analyzed our browser for excessive plugins, which can make for slow browsing. Use the Optimizer feature with care: It can make changes to the way your desktop looks and acts, such as disabling taskbar animations. The Startup Booster accesses system configuration data--always useful. The system cleaner worked fast and seemed typical of the type, though it has a few extras, such as the OS Thinner tab that identifies things you can safely delete in Windows, such as sample videos and system wallpaper. Little things like that can add up when you're trying to slim down your boot drive. A compact desktop process monitor expanded when we moused over it.

Kingsoft PC Doctor packs a lot in a free tool. We'd like a little more information about what it's doing, presented a little more clearly, to recommend it unreservedly.

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