Review: Send stubborn malware, toolbars, and junk packing with FreeFixer

Remove practically anything on your PC with this powerful freeware.

FreeFixer can fix problems other tools can't touch, but it can "fix" your system good and proper, if you don't know what you're doing. This powerful tool removes stuff. It can, and will, remove things your PC needs if you tell it to, so knowledge is key. Unless you're sure something needs to go, don't delete it. Instead, use the link to get more information online. FreeFixer automatically whitelists many safe items on its servers, but it can't tell a good program from a bad one, if it's not in the online database: That's your job. FreeFixer is freeware suitable for Windows 2000 to 8, both 32-bit and 64-bit versions. We ran it in 64-bit Windows 7 Home Premium SP1.

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Installing FreeFixer involves configuring an optional daily background scan. FreeFixer's small, text-heavy user interface actually looks more like a pop-up than a program when you first run it. But it's actually a sensible setup, and the scan results page is impressive. What FreeFixer does is scan your system and list every program, process, service, module, toolbar, browser helper object, and just about anything else on your PC that can be identified and listed by category. Check boxes let you select items for FreeFixer to Repair or Delete, or you can click "More Info." FreeFixer's initial scan found (and logged) a lot of stuff on our computer, but no serious threats. But we selected an IE toolbar to toss, just to see FreeFixer in action. We clicked "Fix," and FreeFixer removed the item and rebooted our system. A subsequent scan showed that FreeFixer had showed the toolbar the door. FreeFixer has a few extras, too, such as its File Nuker, which zaps unwanted files at reboot, and Windows System File Checker, which scans protected files and restores any corrupted files with clean versions.

Used with care, FreeFixer is a great addition to your regular malware, spyware, and system maintenance toolkit. Used carelessly, it can ruin your day as you scramble to troubleshoot the problems you caused in deleting the wrong thing.

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