System Mechanic 10.5 Review

Monday, September 12, 2011

System Mechanic from iolo is a huge compilation of tools designed to clean up and improve the performance of your computer. You know how it goes... clean install, you're feeling fresh as a daisy and life is good. Then a couple of weeks later you start feeling not so clean. Windows is taking longer to start up, programs take longer to load and the BSDs start kicking in. Eventually you start thinking about doing a clean install of Windows. That's where I was sitting a couple of weeks ago, but instead I decided to try System Mechanic. System Mechanic claims to do the following:

  • Fixes errors, crashes and freezes
  • Boosts internet speeds
  • Speeds up Windows start time
  • Restores system stability
  • Cleans out clutter and junk files
  • Prevents slowdowns and bottlenecks
  • Plugs security holes
  • Clears out private data
  • Improves gaming experience

Can system Mechanic make old Betsy run quicker and smoother, or is it time to format? Since iolo uses a "Whole Home Licensing model", System Mechanic can be used on all PCs in the home; so both my work laptop and desktop PC were put to the test.

The first thing I did was gather up some "before" information, such as average boot time, average time to move a folder, average net speed (from, upload and download FTP speeds, and FPS from a couple of games. Then I loaded up System Mechanic and put it to work. First up, analyze system performance. Not surprisingly, both of my systems tested "poor" with a ton of problems found on both machines.

Note: Speed tests were each done multiple times to determine an average; and net tests were done in rapid succession to ensure that time of day and day to day fluctuations would not affect the test.

System Boot

Before System Mechanic: 52.8 seconds
After performing System Mechanic's recommended fixes (registry and clutter): 47.9 seconds
After using PC TotalCare PowerTools: 45.9 seconds

Total Time Recovered: 6.9 seconds

Moving 700MB Files

Before System Mechanic: 26.8 seconds
After performing System Mechanic's recommended fixes (registry and clutter): 26.0 seconds
After using PC TotalCare PowerTools: 25.7 seconds

Total Time Recovered: 1.1 seconds

Game Frames Per Second

Tropico 4 before (laptop): 21 fps
Tropico 4 after (laptop): 30 fps

The Settlers 7 before (laptop): 22 fps
The Settlers 7 after (laptop): 34 fps

Anno 1404 before (laptop): 20 fps
Anno 1404 after (laptop): 32 fps

The NetBooster Challenge

One of the individual tools available in System Mechanic is "NetBooster", designed to increase internet speed and stability by optimizing connection settings. Using to measure my upload and download speeds, I was able to get an average before and after the use of System Mechanic. I got a real kick out of running this test, because it didn't quite work as planned!

Speed Test Results before using NetBooster: 11ms ping / 1.00 Mbps upload / 19.99 Mbps download
Speed Test Results after using NetBooster: 11ms ping / 1.00 Mbps upload / 9.31 Mbps download

System Mechanic Broke The Internet! Download speed was reduced by 10.68 Mbps

As you can see, my download speed was greatly reduced after running the NetBooster tool. Fortunately there is an option to revert to original settings. After rolling it back, my connection returned to full health. After doing the final optimization with PC TotalCare PowerTools, my connection did ultimately gain an unexpected boost.

Speed Test Results after PC TotalCare PowerTools: 8ms ping / 1.01 Mbps upload / 28.38 Mbps download.

Total Speed Boost: 2ms ping / 0.01 Mbps upload / 8.39 Mbps download


In the course of two weeks, System Mechanic has done 290 repairs / optimizations on my laptop. Normally that would make me a little bit nervous and I'd be expecting the machine to blow up at any moment. It wouldn't be the first time that I've had to do a system restore after fiddling with a tool that has promised to increase performance. However, as of the moment, System Mechanic has saved me from doing a clean install of Windows. Both my laptop and desktop PCs gained a significant and noticeable boost from using the program. System Mechanic is really simple to use, and all of the tests run very quickly, except for the hard drive defrag which can take up to an hour or so.

The NetBooster Challenge was kind of funky, but ultimately, my net speeds did improve with the use of System Mechanic's full meal deal, which is the PC TotalCare PowerTools. I was also amused when the program tagged CCleaner for removal as potentially harmful software. After using the all-in-one tools my machines have continued to perform at improved speeds. However, the program will find new issues on a daily basis; typically registry errors and system clutter. I also ended up turning off the Anti-Malware Monitoring option, as it did not recognize my registered version of Malwarebytes. However, SM does come with its own System Guard, intended to help cut back on malicious activity.

System Mechanic comes with a number of diagnostic tools which are fun to muck around with, such as Advanced System Information, NetSpeed Analyzer and System Change Tracker. It also features a number of tools that I consider mandatory, such as Startup Manager and Process Manager. Apparently the program comes with over 50 tools, but I didn't count them!

I already had a small set of tools that I knew and trusted, but what I really wanted was a good all-in-one package. Spending a whole night formatting, reinstalling and downloading updates is not my idea of a good time. I haven't had a single crash or BSD on either machine since I started using System Mechanic. So in my opinion, System Mechanic would be worth every penny. The program is currently on sale for $10 off, bringing the price down to $39.95 for a year of service.

Not sure how long it will be valid for, but I found a promotional iolo page which offers a coupon discount for $20 USD, so that puts the price at $29.95.



Anonymous said...

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deepakw3c said...

Some people do that Glydel and some are too late to realize that it can still be fixed when your trash bag has already been picked up by the garbage truck.
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