Over time, any Windows PC or laptop can begin to feel sluggish. The hard drive begins to get cluttered, apps, and files are added, and performance begins to wane. This doesn’t mean that you need a new PC but rather that your existing PC needs a tune up. In this guide, we will recommend the top 5 PC Optimiser tools to get your Windows computer performing at its best again.
All technology slows down and works less effectively over time. This is why we take our car in for a service every year; it needs a tune-up and a clean under the hood to make sure everything is working as it should be.
Your Windows PC or laptop is no different. As you use it, you begin to accumulate files in different places, components get bogged down with data, and everything begins to slow down.
Microsoft is well aware that this happens and does offer some tools for you to spruce things up. But, these are basic individual programs that are not exactly user-friendly and can take a lot of time and effort to use.
Fortunately, there are several third-party developers who have spotted this problem and created PC Optimizer tools to help. There are plenty of these products around, some of which cost a considerable amount of money.
But optimizing your PC or laptop is a mundane thing that most people don’t want to spend a ton of money on. The good news is that you don’t have to.
While there is a lot of expensive, premium PC optimization software on the market, there are also a lot of free optimizer tools available online too. Many of these do just as good a job as the paid-for ones.
In this guide, we will highlight the top 5 free PC Optimizer tools that are available online right now. We will tell you the pros and cons of each and profile their main features to help you decide which is the best one for you.
Microsoft’s optimization options
Microsoft Windows does come with a number of in-built optimization tools that you can use to tune up your PC and Laptop.
These tools have been around for a long time and while Windows has evolved significantly over time, these have remained largely the same. They include things like:
- Check Disk – Which seeks out and resolves hard drive errors
- Disk Defragmenter – which shunts around files on your hard drive to optimize space
- Disk Clean-up – Which seeks out and deletes unnecessary files
Then there are other tips that Microsoft recommends to improve the performance of your Windows PC and laptop. There are hundreds of advice guides around full of tips about these. They will typically include things like deleted unwanted apps, stopping programs running automatically at start-ups, adjusting the brightness, power plans, and so on.
All of this can be done through Windows, but they all have to be done manually and this can be both frustrating and time consuming; not least because these are things you need to do at least every couple of months.
Far better then, to seek out a single optimizer tool that can do the same work of all of these in-built Microsoft features and far more besides. And better still to find one for free.
The Best Free PC Optimizer 2020
In this guide, we will introduce you to the top 5 free PC optimizer tools we’ve tested which are available on the market right now.
1. Iolo System Mechanic
- Offers clear and concise analysis
- Single-click clean-up feature
- Have to upgrade to premium package for some features
Iolo System Mechanic is a PC optimizer that really delivers on its promises. Not only can it do all the work of the inbuilt Microsoft tools, but more often than not you will see a genuine improvement on the performance of your PC after running it, particularly with things like start-up speeds.
This neat and tidy free tool comes with a user-friendly interface that is well designed and clear to follow. It is able to remove junk files, delete unwanted apps, blocks and remove unwanted auto-run settings, clear out your RAM, and wipe logs, browser histories, and caches.
If you are a privacy-conscious type a nice extra feature is that Iolo System Mechanic can also delete your browsing history in its entirety as well. And if you like to keep things simple, the single-click clean-up feature will definitely appeal.
All of this can be done for free, but there are two paid-for versions of this software that pack in even more features. If you want to stick to the freebie, you will have to make do without these, but it can get frustrating to see them being plugged so frequently.
But the truth is that the free version does everything most people will need and it is as effective as anything else we have tested.
2. IObit Advanced SystemCare Free
- Smart, user-friendly interface
- Single-click clean up option
- Extra software included with the installer
- Not able to take out individual files
The first thing to say about IObit Advanced SystemCare Free is that it looks great. This is the free version of a premium product and the high-quality interface has been passed down. It is incredibly user-friendly and there is no excess clutter or icons to confuse you.
IObit Advanced SystemCare Free allows you to optimize things with a single click. It will clean up files and folders you don’t need, sort out your Windows registry, fix any errors on your hard drive, and more. Be a bit careful though, because this is an all-or-nothing tool and doesn’t give you the choice of selecting which files to keep and which to purge.
One small frustration we had with it was that there are a number of different software packages bundled in the installer. This is always a security risk and far from the philosophy of keeping your PC or laptop clear of junk that you would expect this sort of software to promote.
You will also get some encouragement to sign up for their premium Pro version of this tool too. It does offer quite a bit extra including speed-boosting, real-time optimization, privacy protection, deep registry cleaning, and round-the-clock technical support.
It will set you back around $20 a year, with a license for three devices given out for that. It’s a pretty fair price but if you prefer to stick to the free one, you are still getting a top-notch optimization tool
- Very user-friendly
- Good at freeing up space
- Available for desktop and mobile devices
- Lacks some advanced features
CCleaner is one of the best-known PC optimization tools and it has been around for a long time. This longevity is rooted in the fact that it is a very good product and has a proven track record at delivering on its promises.
CCleaner can do such jobs as removing temporary files, cleaning up browser caches, deleting unwanted cookies, and digging up all those hard to find and unwanted files. If you want something that can do the same as Microsoft’s in-built tools without all the hassle, then CCleaner is a great bet.
There is a Pro version that costs around $15 a year and offers a range of additional features including a PC Health Check and real-time monitoring. You can give this a free trial if you want to see if the extras are worth the money, but for most people, the free version is more than enough.
4. Ashampoo WinOptimizer 2019
- Deep and speedy scans
- Impressive interface
- Great flexibility
- Leaves store links on your desktop
As the name suggests Ashampoo WinOptimizer will give your Windows PC or laptop a thorough clean. It offers a basic scan and clean function which is quick and simple and can scan for junk files, browser cookies, and broken registry entries and erase them all with a single click.
If you want to go further, Ashampoo can help too. Just click on the Details button and it will tell you what each issue it has identified is and why you should fix it. You can then choose to accept or refuse these recommendations as you see fit.
There is also a suite of modules for running routine tasks such as defragmentation and start-up optimization, which can all be managed from the single, user-friendly Ashampoo interface.
We didn’t like the fact that a program that is supposed to clean up your Windows PC or laptop dropped a store link on your desktop to try and get you to buy the premium version. But, that aside, this is an excellent optimization tool.
5. Razer Cortex
- Designed to free up RAM for gamers
- Regular updates
- A few extras we couldn’t see the point of
Razer Cortex is a clever little tool that has been built with gamers in mind. The sole purpose of this is to free up space on your Windows laptop or PC for games with high-intensity graphics to run more visually smoothly. As such, it won’t have the same overall improvement as you will see from some other tools on this list, but if you want smoother visuals it is perfect.
It offers such improvements as defragmentation, clearing out and cleaning up your memory, and suspending any unnecessary system processes. It can also automate the process of switching off unnecessary software and services when you are ready to play.
There are other features to this tool that we didn’t see the point of and the overall results of Razer Cortex were modest. But there was a definite visual improvement and for gamers, that is sometimes all you need.
Everyone wants their Windows PC or laptop performing at its best, but Microsoft makes it difficult to do this with its suite of outdated tools that are spread all over the operating system.
The fastest and most effective way to optimize your Windows device is to deploy a third-party optimization tool to take all the hard work out of it.
You can pay for such a tool, but there is no shortage of free ones available too. In this guide, we have highlighted our pick of the top free PC optimization tools on the market right now and flagged up the things we liked best about them.
If you have any other thoughts or tips about optimizing a Windows PC or any of the software we have recommended in this guide, please do share your thoughts with us using the comment box below.
Do share any questions you may have too. We always try to respond promptly to all of them.