WARNING: JUNK AHEAD?
Junk offender: Auslogics Registry Cleaner
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 Run it and it’ll undoubtedly find numerous ‘outdated’ drivers in your system.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.