WARN­ING: JUNK AHEAD?

Junk of­fender: Aus­log­ics Reg­istry Cleaner

Computer Active (UK) - - News -

It’s safe to say that very few of us re­ally un­der­stand the reg­istry – that mys­te­ri­ous data­base at the heart of Win­dows that stores sys­tem in­for­ma­tion, pro­gram set­tings and, frankly, who knows what else.

The good news is you may not need to un­der­stand it. Aus­log­ics Reg­istry Cleaner is a slick-look­ing tool that prom­ises to au­to­mat­i­cally find and fix reg­istry prob­lems that could oth­er­wise slow down your PC or make it un­sta­ble. Best of all, it’s com­pletely free to down­load and use.

The bad news is: yes, you guessed it, there’s a catch. If you don’t keep a hawk­ish eye on the in­staller, and care­fully untick the right boxes as you click through the setup process, it drops two ad­di­tional, un­re­quested pro­grams on to your PC.

The first is Aus­log­ics Boost­speed, a tune-up tool that can clear out junk files and de­frag­ment your hard drive. That might sound use­ful, but try it and you’ll dis­cover you have to pay an ex­tor­tion­ate £40 to ac­ti­vate it. That’s out­ra­geous when there are per­fectly good clean-up and de­frag­men­ta­tion tools built into Win­dows.

It’s a sim­i­lar story with the sec­ond tool, Aus­log­ics Driver Up­dater (see screen­shot). Run it and it’ll un­doubt­edly find nu­mer­ous ‘out­dated’ driv­ers in your sys­tem. If you want it to up­date them, how­ever, you’ll have to spend £30. What a rip-off! You can down­load new driv­ers for free, and if a crit­i­cal driver up­date is re­ally re­quired, you’ll get it au­to­mat­i­cally via Win­dows Up­date.

I won’t mince words: the whole thing feels deeply dis­hon­est. You think you’re down­load­ing a sim­ple, free util­ity, but you end up with un­wanted soft­ware try­ing to trick you into pay­ing ex­or­bi­tant fees for ser­vices you don’t need.

Even if you avoid this costly junk, Aus­log­ics Reg­istry Cleaner it­self is un­likely to do you any real favours, be­cause it mostly just cleans out left­over en­tries that have no no­tice­able ef­fect on sta­bil­ity or per­for­mance.

Steer well clear, is my ad­vice.

Aus­log­ics Reg­istry Cleaner tries to smug­gle in this costly driver up­dater when you in­stall it

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