A PC-Customizable Swiss Army Knife
Update: A recent change to iolo’s checkout process means that when you purchase a product you’ll automatically become a member of the $19.99 (about £15 / AU$25) per month support package. This is a huge additional fee, so be sure to double check before entering your payment details.
A worthwhile solution for slow PCs is to use a system utilities program like Iolo System Mechanic. A good utility will clean junk from your OS, boost system speed, and perform other important tasks in the background.
System Mechanic made it to our list best system utilities, and in this review we will take a more in-depth look at the program.
Plans & Pricing
System Mechanic’s trial version offers full features for one month, and there’s also a free version that allows you to access a limited set of unlimited features – basic system repair, cleaning, and speed boost. Occasionally, Iolo’s website also has low price deals, but these seem to vary.
The Basic System Mechanic plan is $39.96 per year. This includes system optimization, repair and prevention of system errors, cleaning up junk, fixing dangerous settings to prevent hacking attacks, and maintaining your PC’s speed and performance.
The System Mechanic Pro plan is $55.96 per year, which includes additional features such as System Shield for antivirus/malware protection, Search and Recover to recover accidentally deleted data, and Drive Scrubber to securely erase data.
System Mechanic’s Ultimate Defense plan is $63.96 per year. Additional benefits include Privacy Guardian to protect online privacy and Bypass to securely manage passwords, as well as a malware killer.
System Mechanic is aimed at personal and business users who want their PC to run smoothly. With this in mind, the features within the toolbox are divided into easily understandable categories—Clean, Speed Up, Protect, Recover, and Manage. We’ll look at Protect as a separate security category later.
This tool cleans your system from over 50 types of unnecessary junk. There are also other cleaning options and an advanced uninstaller.
As per the scans we did, System Mechanic found 261 junk files and 28 registry problems. The scan itself was very quick, and fixing problems was a simple matter of pressing the clean selected button.
This module contains a range of tools designed to speed up your PC and your Internet.
Memory Mechanic got me about 2GB of extra memory in less than 20 seconds.
Recovery is where you’ll find tools to fix and troubleshoot problems with your PC, including the System Restore option.
Here you can customize advanced Windows settings, but unless you know exactly what you’re doing, it might be best to avoid changing anything.
The Protect module has a variety of useful tools. System Mechanic will detect and remove deceptive and unwanted programs, fix Windows security items, and provide a desktop “file incinerator” to erase all traces of your files.
interface and use
The user interface is clear, well-organized and easy to navigate using the icons. However, it’s a bit annoying that System Mechanic is one of the constant recommendations for upgrading to Ultimate Defense – it shows up even on the paid version of the software.
Downloading the trial version from Iolo’s website was fast, and installation only took a few minutes. An unexpected feature of the installation was a popup asking if I wanted to download and use Opera as my default Internet browser as an alternative offer from Iolo.
If you click on the question mark in the menu bar, you are taken to Iolo’s program support page. There you’ll find everything you need to know about systems mechanics (in different languages).
The support page provides phone and email support. You have the option of free basic support for one PC, or premium support, which costs $199.95 per year, or 12 monthly installments of $14.95. For this you get unlimited 24×7 troubleshooting (including remote support) for multiple PCs. This option is probably a better value for those with multiple PCs.
Live chat is also available, when we tried it, its response time was less than 20 seconds.
If you’re interested in alternative utilities, CleanMyPC offers malware protection that System Mechanic lacks, and SlimCleaner is pretty cheap, especially for users of multiple PCs.
CleanMyPC is effective at cleaning and optimizing PC, but lacks a backup and restore tool that System Mechanic has. However, it does provide malware protection. Price-wise, CleanMyPC works out cheaper for a single PC with a one-time lifetime payout of $39.95.
Meanwhile, SlimCleaner offers a small set of basic cleaning and optimization tools, but they get the job done. However, there is no backup and restore tool. There’s a one-year plan for one computer that costs $19.97, and you can buy a lifetime plan for five computers for $59.97, which is good for those on a budget.
System Mechanic is a great, easy-to-use system utility. The interface is slick and uncluttered, and scans are fast. The lack of virus/malware protection over the basic System Mechanic version, the single annual payment option available for each plan, and the cost of premium support.
However, the app will be suitable for all those who want their PC to run fast and junk-free, and you do not need technical expertise to install and use it.
- We’ve also highlighted the best system utilities and repair software