Registry Optimization From Lavasoft

very good
key review info
application features
  • Faster system speed
  • (5 more, see all...)

The way I see it, the first rule of maintaining your computer is registry optimization, as registry is the heart and soul of your Windows and if that's not healthy there is really no use to clean the computer of junk files or make whatever other optimizations. A clean registry ensures a good run of the system, fewer to none errors as well as better performance. Getting rid of all the clutter left behind by incomplete software un-install is the first thing you should do when starting a system cleaning session.

And the tools to do it with are everywhere on the Internet, almost all of them bragging with extraordinary accuracy of their detection engines and 100% elimination of invalid links found. But we know things are not exactly like this and every once in a while a false positive may be picked up and mess with your system. Thus, this is one occasion to become a very picky user and not to settle with second rate products.

Lavasoft, worldwide known company first of all for its anti-spyware solutions, enriches its portfolio with a new product, Registry Tuner, thus reaching to a total of three products designed for protecting your information (with Ad-Aware and Privacy Toolbox) and keeping the system's performance at high rates for a longer time.

Registry Tuner comes as a complete solution for cleaning your registry and optimizing it for fast access and better performance. The interface may seem familiar to those of you who have already tried the similar solution from Sammsoft, Advanced Registry Optimizer, but that's because it is exactly the same software with minor differences in the looks. Lavasoft partnered with Sammsoft on this one.

A nice shiny Vista ready interface awaits for your commands and the responsible detection engine is ready to assist in cleaning your registry from invalid entries. The entire application is user friendly and you need no documentation for running this gem, as all the information you need in this sense is compacted in the various screens of the software.

Registry Tuner's main window provides various information on the system and the action taken for optimizing it. Thus you will know from the moment the interface loads the date and time of the last registry scan, backup and optimization. The three actions the application can carry out include One Click Tuning (an automatic scan and clean of the registry combined with optimization), automatically scanning and fixing the registry, or just optimizing it.

All these are automatic activities that require the least involvement from the user. If you want to implicate more in the processes Registry Tuner allows viewing of detected registry entries and you can choose which ones are eliminated and which stay.

During our testing, scanning operation did not take too long to complete and the default locations it checks include ActiveX, application paths, file types associations, fonts area, help files, history lists, Start menu, invalid shortcuts, the Startup section etc. If you want only some of these locations to be checked, there is no problem as the application allows selection from Settings panel.

Registry Tuner comes a responsible cleaner taking the necessary actions for protecting your system against eventual mishaps. In this sense, before each registry cleanse, it will make a partial backup permitting restoration of the elements that have been deleted. It will preserve multiple backups (these are time and date-stamped) in case you want to revert the state of the registry to an earlier state.

The application offers the possibility of making full registry backups so that you can restore an entire registry configuration, should something not work properly after the cleaning process. This option is entirely left to the user as there is no automatic procedure for the task.

As with installing and un-installing software registry data is scattered all over the registry, optimization process of the registry consists in removing the gaps left behind by this kind of activities. All the gaps in the registry may contribute to system slowdowns or even cause a crash as even if data is deleted from a registry block it still maintains a reference to the next one and if blank cells are corrupt they may transmit invalid info to the program calling them.

With optimizing the registry (compacting/defragging it) all the blanks are eliminated, the result being a registry with no room for obsolete data. During the process the registry will become smaller in size as all blank space is eliminated and your registry becomes fresh and ready for action.

However, all modifications will be made the moment your computer restarts and Registry Tuner will take care of this automatically. Immediately after defragmentation is over your system will reboot without user intervention. This comes as a downside if you are in the middle of something and it would be best to let the user initiate the restart but then again the beforehand warning informs you of the automatic restart and advises to save all your work before launching registry optimization.

A piece of advice: I generally recommend letting the application do its work unhindered by other computer activity and you should initiate both optimization and cleaning of the registry before getting busy with the computer.

The list of settings included permit choosing registry locations to be scanned for invalid entries (by default all of them are checked), setting up an exclusion list, and creating a schedule for automatic scanning. Automatic scanning of the registry at a certain date and time is run in the background and you will simply be prompted to check on the detected errors and initiate cleaning process.

During our testing the application performed beautifully, although it could not eliminate all the errors from the first clean and we had to run it a few times more. At the first scan it detected 205 invalid entries and removed 156, leaving 49 of them behind. At the next scan and fix it eliminated 48 of them leaving only one behind.

As any other registry cleaner on the market, it will not get you rid of every possible registry error as they have different methods of detection and sometimes some non-critical areas are left alone. So I suggest using several registry cleaners for best results, and a combination of Lavasoft Registry Tuner and EasyCleaner or other trustworthy applications would ensure a much better cleaning of your registry.

The application is subscription based and Lavasoft asks $29.95/1 year, $39.95/2 years or $49.95 for 3 years in return of your using it. If you asked me I would say that it's pretty high, but I've seen good software at much higher rates. I will not say anything about Sammsoft's offer for the application, but there are registry cleaners at lower prices as well as good freeware up to the job. However, Lavasoft Registry Tuner features registry optimization options which are pretty rare on the market.

The Good

Registry Tuner comes with a very user friendly interface and the necessary tools for maintaining your system running at high performance. Scan times are pretty short and the accuracy of the engine recommends it for such sensitive tasks as registry cleaning.

It comes with registry optimization solution, a feature rarely included in registry cleaners but which completes a job well done.

One Click Tuning feature takes care of deep scanning the registry, fixing the errors and optimizing your registry, which represents a comfortable alternative once you get to trust the application.

You benefit from a partial backup each time a bad entry is eliminated and you also get to make full backups of the registry in case something goes wrong.

The Bad

The price may be an issue as subscription based software has never been to the likes of the users.

It may leave an error or two behind and you may need to run it several times in order to drastically reduce the amount of registry invalid entries to a minimum.

I wish One Click Tuning would support a configuration of some sort, like letting the user decide which areas should be checked for invalid entries.

The Truth

Registry Tuner puts few options on the table but all of them are useful and contribute to improving the overall performance of your computer. It is extremely easy to use and supports scheduled scans.

One Click Tuning represents the fast way of using what the application offers: registry cleaning and optimization, within a single click of the mouse.

However, it will not get you rid of all invalid entries in the registry (no registry can do this) and I recommend using it in tandem with similar applications. Considering that there are freeware solutions for almost all that Registry Tuner does, making it available on subscription is not really too brilliant. But hey, the product works fine and your system will show improvement.

Here are some snapshots of the application in action:

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user interface 5
features 4
ease of use 5
pricing / value 4

final rating 4
Editor's review
very good