Advanced System Optimizer 3 gives people a comprehensive suite of utilities fronted by an interface that showcases an excellent use of color-coded icons, making banal system tasks easy to complete--if not exciting. However, its restrictive trial could prevent some people from fully exploring the program.
The program attempts to be all things to all people, and includes tools that can be split into three categories: maintenance, security, and backup. Advanced System Optimizer focuses on the maintenance side of things, and includes a Registry optimizer and cleaner, a disk defragmenter, a disk repair utility that claims to fix errors before drive failure, an explorer for managing disk usage by file type and size, a memory optimizer for freeing RAM, a game mode, and a driver updater. Security is not the focus here, but it does include malware protection, secure deletion, and a file encryption utility. Backup and recovery features include rescuing deleted files, a backup manager that streamlines restoration, and a separate system file backup and restore feature. The Smart PC Care feature is new, and allows users to run multiple maintenance tasks with one click.
The new main window is well-crafted and takes a page from security suites by providing status updates in one place, letting you know what the problems are in general terms. At the end of a scan, a small Details link will appear to the right of the scan type. Click it to drill down to see specifically which files, Registry entries, or cookies will be deleted. The harsh trial compares favorably with its competitors, but, like them, it's so tight that most users will find it challenging to fairly evaluate the program's efficacy.
Editors' note, November 6, 2009: The review has been updated to fix an inaccuracy, but the overall score has not changed.
Advanced System Optimizer v. 3, a multi-functional system performance and optimization suite for Windows. This collection of tools lets you supercharge your PC's performance, enhance its security, tweak and optimize its settings, and customize and personalize your screens. Registry Cleaner makes your system more stable by cleaning out the bad Registry entries that build up each time you install and uninstall software. The program's Registry Optimizer defragments and rebuilds your Registry, making your entire system run more smoothly and quickly. The program includes powerful tools to clean and optimize your hard drives. The System Cleaner removes clutter and unnecessary files from your PC, allowing it to run more quickly. The Disk Optimizer defragments your hard drive, keeping it running efficiently. The Disk Explorer tells you which files and folders are taking up too much space, and makes it easy to manage disk usage. Advanced System Optimizer's Windows Optimizers keep Windows running faster. The Driver Updater ensures that all of your hardware devices have up-to-date drivers. The Memory Optimizer ensures that memory is released properly when you stop running each program on your system. There is even a Game Optimizer that creates a special environment so that games run faster.
The software has Security and Privacy tools to protect you from malware and identify theft. System Protector provides realtime protection against spyware, trojans, and other malware. The Privacy Protector erases your Internet history and other private files that could be used to track your online activities. The Secure Delete function permanently deletes files and folders so that this data can never be recovered. The Secure Encryptor lets you add password protection to sensitive files. Backup and recovery tools ensure that your information is safe, even if your hard drive crashes. The program can back up all of the important files that you create, as well as the system files that Windows needs to start and run your computer. The Undelete function lets you restore files that you accidentally deleted. You can even save files from deleted partitions. By making it simple to do routine management on your system, Advanced System Optimizer keeps your computer running smoothly. You can manage the Windows Startup process, ensure that programs are uninstalled properly, and automatically schedule your detection and maintenance scans.
What's new in this version:
Version 3.1 now includes the One Click Care feature, allowing six important tasks to be carried out. Among new features are also Spyware Protector, Disk Defrag, Backup Manager, and Driver Manager.