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TuneUp Utilities

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TuneUp Utilities

TuneUp Utilities
Original author(s) TuneUp Software GmbH
Developer(s) AVG Technologies
Initial release 1997;  (1997)[1]
Operating system Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8
Platform IA-32 and x64
Size 32.9 MB
Available in English, German, French, Spanish, Dutch, Italian, Portuguese, Polish, Japanese and Russian[1]
Type Utility software
License Trialware

TuneUp Utilities is a utility software suite for Microsoft Windows designed to help manage, maintain, optimize, configure and troubleshoot a computer system. It was produced and developed by TuneUp Software GmbH, headquartered in Darmstadt, Germany and co-founded by Tibor Schiemann and Christoph Laumann in 1997.[2][3] In 2011, AVG Technologies acquires TuneUp Software.[1]

As of 2011, nine versions of TuneUp Utilities have been released and the number of included components have been increased from sixteen to thirty-two. TuneUp Utilities have attained generally positive reviews, although multiple reviewers did not approve of its price for value.


TuneUp Utilities 2014, the latest version of the product, consists of 30 different components, all of which can be accessed from within a central hub, called TuneUp Start Center. Most of these components can also be invoked from the Start menu. TuneUp Start Center itself can show the components either in a category view (default) or in a list view.

Status and recommendations

The Status and recommendations category houses four sub-sections: 1-Click Maintenance, Performance Optimizer, Fix Problems and Live Optimization. The 1-Click Maintenance section runs multiple routine maintenance tools at once. The Performance Optimizer and Fix Problems utilities are intended to provide tips to identify and fix potential problems and increase performance, such as disabling unnecessary visual effects and disabling or removing unused Windows services and programs. Live Optimization, according to the application's author, is intended to improve the responsiveness of Windows applications by tweaking their execution priorities.

System Optimizations

The Optimize system section includes TuneUp Program Deactivator, which unloads programs from memory and prevents their further automatic execution, an alternative to uninstalling them. While disabled programs continue to consume disk space, they no longer affect the startup time, the shutdown time and the system performance.[4] Other components include a defragmentation tool, a registry cleaner, and a startup manager to replace MSConfig.

Disk cleanup

The Gain disk space section itself is a disk cleanup component which replaces Windows Disk Cleanup. It also gives access to TuneUp Disk Space Explorer (a disk space analyzer) and TuneUp Shredder (a data erasure tool).

Troubleshooting tools

The Fix problems section provides access to TuneUp Repair Wizard which allows users to selectively repair problems that TuneUp Utilities cannot automatically detect; e.g. icons getting corrupted or items like My Computer and Recycle Bin permanently vanished from Windows Desktop.

Also in this category, there is TuneUp Disk Doctor. It can check the integrity of files stored on hard disk drives and salvage damaged files. It can also scan for physical defects known as bad sectors and isolate them. TuneUp Disk Doctor is a graphical replacement for Windows CHKDSK.

Other items include a task manager, a system information tool and an undeletion tool.

Windows customization

The last section provides access to TuneUp Styler and TuneUp System Control. TuneUp System Control is a program that allows access to some of the obscure or harder-to-access settings of Microsoft Windows, similar to Tweak UI. TuneUp Styler allows for customization of the Windows user interface by changing the desktop appearance, icons, and the logon and startup screens.

Turbo Mode

The Turbo Mode, accessible from the bottom of Start Center, gives system a performance boost by temporarily disabling some of Windows services and features of user's choice, such as Windows Aero themes and visual effects.[4][5]

Economy Mode

The Economy Mode accessible from the bottom of Start Center, gives system a more battery power to save by reducing background programmes and CPU power to saves battery.

Duplicate Finder

The Duplicate Finder comes with version 14, it is accessible from "CLEAN UP" tab located in Start Center which finds and removes cloned photos, music and files which could be wasting the hard drive space.[6]

Flight Mode

The Flight Mode comes with version 14, improves battery life on laptops, netbooks, and tablet PCs. It just the enhanced feature of Economy Mode which is also accessible from the bottom of Start Center. Once enabled, it reduces processors’ performance to optimize the power consumption for maximum battery life, switches off unnecessary background processes that slow PC performance down, disables Wi-Fi and Bluetooth devices instantly.[7]


Supported operating systems
Operating system Earliest
Windows 95 97 2003 [8]
Windows 98 97 2007 [9]
Windows Me 2003 2007 [9]
Windows 2000 2003 2008 [10]
Windows XP with Service Pack 1 or earlierA 2003 2008 [10]
Windows XP with Service Pack 2 or laterA 2009 2013 [11][12]
Windows XP Professional x64 Edition 2006 2013 [11][12]
Windows Vista 2007 2013 [11][12]
Windows 7 2010 2013 [11][12]
Windows 8 2013 2013 [12]

The first version of the software, TuneUp 97, was released in 1997.[1] Since then, eight versions have been released over the years.[13]

TuneUp Utilities 2003
The first version to have become available in English[8] and French,[14] as well as the original German language. It consists of 16 individual tools accessible through the Start Center, as well as the Windows start menu. It includes features to clean the hard disks, clean and defragment the Windows Registry, optimize Windows and Internet connection settings and change the look and feel of Windows. It also provides features targeted at users with an intermediate or advanced level of computer knowledge that enables them to edit the registry, manage running processes, uninstall programs, shred and undelete files, and display system information.[15] In addition to the previously-supported Windows 95 and Windows 98, TuneUp Utilities 2003 also supports Windows 2000, Me and Windows XP.[8]
TuneUp Utilities 2004
Introduces TuneUp 1-Click Maintenance and TuneUp WinStyler (the predecessor TuneUp Styler.[16]).[2] Also includes registry defragmentation support for Windows 2000 and XP.[10]
TuneUp Utilities 2006
In TuneUp Utilities 2006, optimization, customization and disk cleaning tools support Mozilla Firefox. Its TuneUp StartUp Manager displays editorial rating and explanations about well-known programs that start during computer startup. TuneUp Styler in this version is able to change the boot logo of Windows XP.[17][18]
TuneUp Utilities 2007
Features two new components: TuneUp Disk Doctor[19] and TuneUp Disk Space Explorer.[19] TuneUp Utilities 2007 also supports Windows Vista.[9]
TuneUp Utilities 2008
Incorporates two more components: TuneUp Drive Defrag (the defragmentation tool) and TuneUp Repair Wizard (the troubleshooting tool). TuneUp Utilities 2008 no longer has a separate disk cleanup component; the disk cleanup function has become part of the Start Center, under a new Gain disk space section.
TuneUp Utilities 2009
Start Center in this version includes a new section that analyzes the system and then displays the current status as well as available recommendations (if any) in the three areas: System maintenance, Speed and System status.[20] New tools in this version are TuneUp Speed Optimizer (renamed StartUp Optimizer in subsequent versions) and TuneUp Shortcut Cleaner. A new TuneUp Styler can change the Windows Vista logo animation displayed during startup.[20]
TuneUp Utilities 2010
TuneUp Utilities is compatible with Windows 7.[21] A new Turbo Mode introduced in this version allows to disable multiple background functions of Windows and programs with one click, like Windows Aero, Windows Search, Windows Error Reporting or synchronization with mobile devices.[5] Also includes TuneUp Live Optimization.[21][22]
TuneUp Utilities 2011
Features TuneUp Program Deactivator; it can disable programs that impose significant system load, thereby eliminating the load without uninstalling the programs. If the user tries to start a disabled program again, TuneUp Program Deactivator automatically re-enables the program on the fly.[11] A new program rating functionality in this version shows how other TuneUp Utilities users have rated the usefulness of a given program on a scale of 1 to 5 stars.[11] The Start Center also includes a Tuning Status, which tracks and displays optimization progress and highlights areas with remaining optimization potential.[4]
TuneUp Utilities 2012
Features a new Economy Mode that when enabled, helps save battery power of laptops.
TuneUp Utilities 2013
Mainly improved in the area of disk cleanup and performance optimization via the Program Deactivator and the Live Optimization. It supports Windows 8.[12][23]

Critical reception

TuneUp Utilities received generally-positive reviews, despite the product secretly installing pop-up advertisements without notifying the user. Computer Shopper magazine reviewed TuneUp Utilities 2009 and give it a score of 8 out of 10. It commended TuneUp Registry Cleaner as well as the hard-drive-related components of product but also noted that some tools are superficially implemented and that this suite lacks an antivirus and a personal firewall.[24] TuneUp Utilities 2009 was voted #37 of "The Top 100 Products of 2009" and won the award "Best Utility Suite" of Computer Shopper.[25]

CNET also reviewed TuneUp Utilities 2009 and gave it 5 stars out of 5. “To call TuneUp Utilities 2009 useful would drastically understate the situation”, said Seth Rosenblatt, an associate editor with CNET. He assessed TuneUp Utilities as a powerful and easy-to-use set of tools, with its disk cleanup and registry cleaner the “bread-and-butter” of the entire set.[26]

PC World's Preston Gralla reviewed the 2010 version and commented that TuneUp Utilities is a comprehensive suite that “includes everything from a startup optimizer to a driver [sic] defragmenter, from an overall speed optimizer to a Windows Registry cleaner, and more.” However, he said that the high price of the entire suite ($50) might make the purchase decision more difficult.[5] Preston had also previously reviewed TuneUp Utilities 2009 for PC Advisor and gave it 4.5 stars out of 5 stars.[27]

PC Magazine reviewed TuneUp Utilities 2011 and gave it a score of 4 out of 5. “Overall, the software does a fine job of revitalizing a worn PC," commented Jeffrey L. Wilson, PC Magazine software analyst. He appreciated the product's one-click repair feature and the subsequent reduction in his test PC's boot-time. However, Wilson criticized the software license that only permits installation on three PCs, contrasting it with Iolo System Mechanic 10, a competing product that allows an unlimited number of installations in the same household.[4]

TuneUp Utilities also received a Softpedia Pick award from Softpedia.[28] Although Alex Muradin, Softpedia editor, expressed concern over the lack of proper technical support for TuneUp Utilities 2006, he gave this product a final score of 5 out of 5. However, it is notable that he gave this product a subscore of 3 out of 5 for pricing/value.[29]

Christian Immler characterizes TuneUp Utilities as a classic amongst tuning tools.[30]


  1. ^ ^ Only Windows XP Home Edition, Professional Edition and Media Center Edition are supported.


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