SpeedUpMyPC v3 Review

Reviewed by: Mark Goldstein, February 2008
Published by: Uniblue Systems Ltd.
Requires: Windows 2000, XP or Vista; Intel Pentium 4 1GHz or equivalent processor, 512MB RAM, 200MB available hard disk space, Internet Explorer 6 or later
MSRP: US$29.95

SpeedUpMyPC is a utility designed to optimize system start-up, RAM and CPU usage, clean up junk files, optimize your Internet access and check whatever privacy protection happens to be enabled on your Windows computer. SpeedUpMyPC seems to be aimed at novice and beginner home PC users, and provides a friendly user interface (UI) in which adjustments can be made with a minimum of fuss and bother. SpeedUpMyPC is not a service technician's tool, but rather a basic utility designed to be part of a home PC user's regular maintenance tool kit.

I installed and ran SpeedUpMyPC on a Windows XP Pro PC, a Windows Vista Business PC and a Windows Vista Ultimate PC. When we last reviewed SpeedUpMyPC, the UI needed a bit of work. The current UI is much improved and provides a somewhat more detailed (but not real-time) view of CPU and memory usage, and hard disk read/write loads in selectable 1 minute or 1 hour elapsed graphs. The memory monitor itself sits in the background in an attempt to detect states which have the potential to cause a crash. In theory, it's a good idea—in practice it works to some extent but crash halt notifications can take too long to clear from your screen.


Internet access optimization seems to work primarily by cleaning out useless cached items and temporary files which your browser may track but not use, and by making MRU-related changes to the Registry settings. The only problem is that you still have to choose your Internet connection type and speed which some people, especially novices and beginners, may not know. We'd be more impressed if the SpeedUpMyPC installation or start up routine tested and detected the Internet connection type and speed, and then simply waited for you to click the Optimize button.

The Startup tool looks at everything in the Registry boot settings set to start whenever you boot or reboot your PC. The Startup tool works well and is easier than the Windows MSConfig utility for novice and beginner users to understand. Unfortunately, there aren't any warnings about not turning off important start up programs which means that inexperienced users could accidentally turn of their antivirus monitoring. Still, it really is easier to use than MSConfig.

The CPU optimization tool doesn't actually attempt to physically mess around with your processor, but provides a list of installed programs adjacent to a booster scale which can be used to control how much processing priority Windows allows for each program. However, the existence of all of these controls and adjustments doesn't mean you're obligated to tweak every single thing. My sense of this type of control is that it's best left to the operating system to decide how programs should be prioritized for CPU access. Unless a background utility program, for example, is sucking up CPU resources needed for productivity software while multi-tasking, there's no need to drop the utility's CPU priority into the cellar. On the other hand, it's nice to have an easy-to-use tool like SpeedUpMyPC for those times when some background utility does happen to be slowing things down. After looking at the default CPU priority settings on two of our SpeedUpMyPC installations, it appeared as though Windows and the various program installations were already doing a sensible job of CPU priority settings.

SpeedUpMyPC can run in the background when you start your PC, or it can be run periodically as part of a regular maintenance routine. Our vote is for periodic, mainly because most PCs already run far too much stuff in the background.

Cons: During optimization on the Windows Vista Ultimate machine the SpeedUpMyPC interface periodically went completely blank except for the tabs at the top of its window. Very disconcerting. The SpeedUpMyPC UI contains a constant recommendation/sell at the bottom of the left panel for the Uniblue PowerSuite software. You'll also find a system status indicator at the bottom of the main screen which lists PowerSuite as "not installed" as if the constant mention in the left panel isn't enough. Up-sells and cross-sells in computer utilities are a fact of life these days, but we're still not used to it and it feels a like a nag. There's no warning from the installation routine but you'd better reboot the computer after installing SpeedUpMyPC or initial optimization and cleanup will take forever. SpeedUpMyPC would not work consistently on the Windows Vista Ultimate PC I tried, and after repeated attempts to stop the software using its "Stop" button, it simply froze and had to be killed via Windows Task Manager (Ctrl+Shift+Esc). The online help system is somewhat incomplete, with a cryptic "sump3" showing in the title bar of the help system window.

Pros: SpeedUpMyPC works properly in Windows 2000, XP, Vista Basic and Vista Business. It's not a replacement for more RAM, a faster CPU, faster hard drives or a faster graphics card, but it works to help improve the performance of your primary system hardware and operating system installations. SpeedUpMyPC can be added to your general PC maintenance toolkit or set of utilities. SpeedUpMyPC is also a good choice for people who are less than technically savvy, because it provides a number of clearly described, one-click choices for most of its optimization controls. Try the demo to see if it fits your needs.

KSN Product Rating:



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