Once you’ve had your PC for some time you may well start to notice that it no longer runs as quickly as it once did and that the occasional system bug will have crept in.

This is where Fix-It Utilities 7 comes as is the latest upgrade to the maintenance suite. What you get a range of diagnostic and maintenance tools that can pinpoint any bottlenecks in your system and then help to resolve them. To be fair, these are a wide collection of tools, brought together under one interface. You may not use them all but as this version is cheaper than previous editions, it offers good value for money

Fix-It runs from a central control menu that highlights the current status of your system from within the System Monitor. This page highlights how your resources are being handled, as well as how much impact programs are having on your processor. To be fair, most of these options are for the merely interested as the casual user won’t really be able to interpret them too much.

In order to make your system run quicker, you need to refer the PC Diagnostics section, which runs a rather lengthy series of tests that troubleshoot any problems you may have. It also throws up solutions, so you don’t need to worry too much that it’ll all be beyond you.

Perhaps the most care needed on any machine is with the hard drive. Therefore, the most obvious tool is the Optimise application, which is a wizard driven program that is designed to test and improve the integrity of your hard drive, after all this is where you store all your files, so making sure it runs smoothly is vital. SMARTDiskcheck checks the health of the drive, registering any bad sectors or potential problems. While it won’t prevent a total system failure it does mean you’ll be able to see problems arising before they actually occur.

Anyone who has ever used Windows own Disk Defragmenter will know how laborious is can be. Well, JETDefrag works a lot quicker and with far better results, helping to put partitions into order so programs run faster.

Maintenance tools are increasingly moving into the online protection game and Fix-It is no exception as you’ll now find a virus scanner and anti-spyware tools also included. Trend Micro, who specialises in online protection and has just announced its own updates for 2008, supplies these.

Sadly, these aren’t the latest tools but a license of the current ones available but they work well. It’s likely you already have such protection in place, so it may be a little superfluous but it adds to the overall value of the package.

Verdict

We first looked at Fix-It Utilities with version 6 and to be fair, while this isn’t a great refresh of the older version, it does make it easier to check your system and keep it in decent working order.

If you already own the older version, you won’t really need to invest in this new version too quickly but anyone who is a little lax with PC maintenance should seriously consider investing in a copy.