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October 19, 2010

Optimize Your PC with Slim Computer

Keeping your own PC and the PCs at your company optimized can be a full-time job. Windows computers have an unfortunate tendency to run slower as you download, install, and uninstall more and more software. One program that tries to optimize and speed up your PCs is Slim Computer, a free tool from SlimWare Utilities. I recently learned of the utility through an article in USA Today and thought it might be useful for IT pros.

Moving from beta status to its first official release, Slim Computer analyzes your startup programs, toolbars, shortcuts and applications to see which ones may be bogging down your computer and which could possibly be eliminated. But rather than playing a guessing game, the utility taps into the cloud to dispense its advice. Slim Computer evalutes programs based on ratings from different users and then uses all that cloud-sourced information to optimize your PC.

The software is simple to use. You select which components you want to optimize -- applications, toolbars, startup items and shortcuts. After triggering the scan, Slim Computer shows you a list of items for each category, giving you the option to disable and remove any you no longer need. You can grab more information on most common programs by accessing SlimWare’s database of applications. You can also rate and write a comment about any item, which SlimWare then adds to its online database.

Slim Computer keeps track of any application or other item that you disable so that you can easily restore it. You can also tap into your Windows uninstaller and a host of other Windows features and tools directly through Slim Computer. The utility can be especially helpful in optimizing a new computer filled with loads of crapware. But it can also be valuable in beefing up an older PC slowed down by too many applications that have been installed and uninstalled.

Slim Computer runs under Windows XP 32-bit, Windows Vista 32 and 64-bit, and Windows 7 32 and 64-bit. To help its users, SlimWare Utilities provides support through both e-mail and an online forum. If your PCs or any of the PCs at your company seem to be running slower, I think it’s worth running Slim Computer to see if you can optimize their performance.

Lance Whitney is a journalist, IT consultant, and Web Developer with almost 20 years of experience in the IT world. To read more of Lance's articles, please visit his columnist page

Edited by Tammy Wolf

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