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One of a few things I do on my spare time is review software. The last piece of software I reviewed is called PCTuner, marketed by a company called QuickHeal. Marketed as a simple solution to the classic problem of a computer getting slower with time, it is said to “…cleans and optimizes your PC safely and automatically. It also protects your privacy by cleaning various common application traces.”
Installing it is now hassle, a simple “next”, “next”, “accept” and “install” routine is implemented as with most other software installs. Similarly, it is simple to use, with at most three clicks to perform any task. Here is what the main window looks like:
Here are the features, as presented by QuickHeal:
- Auto Cleanup
- Cleans the Windows junk items automatically. Auto Cleanup finds invalid, unwanted files and registry entries and automatically takes backup and removes them from the system. It is an easy way to optimize and maintain your PC in a single click.
- Traces Cleanup
- Cleans all history logs and activity trails. Traces Cleanup removes history and recently opened files list of various applications.
- Disk Cleanup
- Cleans all the unwanted junk files and temporary files. Disk Cleanup finds invalid and unwanted files from the system. The user selected files on cleaning, are backed-up and removed.
- Registry Cleanup
- Cleans invalid registry items. Registry Cleanup finds invalid registry entries from the system. The selected entries on cleaning, are backed-up and removed.
- Restores previously cleaned items. Restore can undo the changes done earlier by restoring the backup.
In spite of all the features QuickHeal claim to have packed into the software, PCTuner is a really disappointing piece of software. The only features that does what it claims to do is the Restore and Registry Cleanup features. When it comes to the Registry Cleanup, well frankly, there are better alternatives out there, many of them free.
The biggest disappointment in all of this is the Traces Cleanup feature. Now, while it does clean up the history of some programs, such as Internet Explorer, Microsoft Paint and Adobe Reader. Disappointingly, there seem to be many more programs that it is unable of cleaning than there are programs that it does clean. To mention a few programs that it does not handle; Mozilla Firefox, Paint .Net, Opera, Notepad++, FileZilla or even OpenOffice.org.
QuickHeal boasts many awards for their antivirus and security solutions. While they may indeed have received many prizes and awards for that part of their business, this piece of software feels like left hand work. Not only does it not do what it claims to do well, it also lacks functions that should be obvious parts of this kind of a program, such as malware/spyware/greyware scans.
On top of it all, they charge $25 for this program. My recommendation is clear and simple: stay away!