History of Development of Norton Utilities
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Reviewed by ; Barry Brenesal Reviewed January 13, This year, Norton SystemWorks Professional has added a few new components, including a full edition of Norton Ghost , a new benchmark and diagnostic tool, and a process viewer similar to the Windows Task Manager. Because it also includes Norton Utilities, new users won’t go wrong with SystemWorks Professional as their basic utility package. And more-advanced users should instead buy Iolo Technologies’ System Mechanic 4. Setup and interface Installing or reinstalling Norton SystemWorks Professional isn’t easy and could be time-consuming.
Reviewed by ; Barry Brenesal Reviewed January 13, This year, Norton SystemWorks Professional has added a few new components, including a full edition of Norton Ghost , a new benchmark and diagnostic tool, and a process viewer similar to the Windows Task Manager. Because it also includes Norton Utilities, new users won’t go wrong with SystemWorks Professional as their basic utility package. And more-advanced users should instead buy Iolo Technologies’ System Mechanic 4.
Setup and interface Installing or reinstalling Norton SystemWorks Professional isn’t easy and could be time-consuming. We first tried to upgrade from SystemWorks and lost all of our previous settings in the process. Next, we removed SystemWorks completely and chose the full installation. The SystemWorks uninstall worked without a problem; however, when we tried to create a profile name in the new Norton Password Manager utility, the program insisted the name–the same used during our partial installation–was a duplicate.
After consulting Symantec, we edited the system registry to remove the prior installation information not removed during the standard SystemWorks uninstall process. The main SystemWorks menu, which lets you choose among disk cleanup and repair utilities, is easy to navigate. A separate Options menu lets you control which utilities run in the background upon start-up and how each of these utilities behaves. Unfortunately, even after turning off all memory-resident utilities Password Manager, Virus Auto-Protect, Smart Sweep, and so on , we found that SystemWorks continued to load several memory-hogging executables at start-up.
To turn these off, we had to access the Startup file under Windows’ System Configuration. It serves no other purpose and can’t be turned off unless you use a third-party memory manager.
Finally, SystemWorks Professional loads perceptibly slower than its predecessors. On several different computers and operating systems we tested informally, our loading times without any of the package’s utilities running in the background were two to three times longer than SystemWorks ‘s.
Features SystemWorks continues to provide antivirus, disk-defragmentation, registry-repair, backup, and file-cleanup tools in its latest version. In addition, NAV now treats spyware and adware as it does viruses, allowing these programs to be quarantined or deleted. We’re glad Norton has chosen to include this feature, but we find its implementation lacking. Some shareware applications come with a small spyware element, and utilities such as Lavasoft’s Ad-aware let you quarantine individual elements while running the main program.
NAV doesn’t, meaning your shareware simply won’t run. The utility automatically detects field types while browsing online and offers the personal information you’ve filled out in advance. For example, NPM stores and retrieves username and password fields used in applications and on Web sites and supplies them the next time you access the application or Web site. But, unlike other password managers, NPM caches usernames and passwords only as you enter them; these fields cannot be edited..
NPM stores its information under a series of user-defined, password-protected profiles. SystemWorks Professional includes Norton Ghost , a backup app that allows users to recover damaged files quickly and easily. There’s also a new performance test that allows power users to benchmark the performance of their PC, and a Process Viewer, which diagnoses system conflicts or performance issues.
Performance Service and support Phone support for SystemWorks remains excessively expensive: As there’s no weekend phone technical support, you’ll have to plan all of your technical problems to occur between 5 a. PT, Monday through Friday. The online support is a little better: Symantec’s support Web site supplies a host of free information about current viruses. Still, we think Symantec could afford to provide better support for its products.
Norton Utilities 3. It detects, prevents and repairs hardware and software problems; protects against system crashes; optimizes performance; and carries out preventative maintenance.
Version 3. User Level Beginners, intermediate, and advanced PC users. Norton’s clean and easy to use interface make it appropriate for beginners; yet it is also thorough enough for more advanced users.
New and Enhanced Features Versions 3. Below is a brief outline of new and enhanced features. New Crash Guard 3.
WinDoctor—checks for anything that might cause Windows to experience problems. LiveUpdate Pro—updates third-party applications and drivers. Optimization Wizard—optimizes the size and placement of the Windows swap file. Speed Start—optimizes the speed of applications as they load.
Rescue Disk—now supports Iomega Zip drives. AntiVirus Starter Edition—scans hard disks and boot records for viruses and repairs infected files.
Utilities Integrator—provides quick and easy access to all of the Norton Utilities programs. Registry Optimization—compacts and fine-tunes your registry. Enhanced System Doctor—scans your system for problems during idle time and provides solutions.
Uses less memory. Speed Disk—improved to optimize a disk faster. Review New to Version 3. Norton uses medical metaphors for some of its functions, as if you had a doctor in the house. Actually, with all that Norton Utilities does, I felt that I had a hospital staff. Utilities Integrator does an excellent job of providing easy access to all the utilities. Its design is a panel which is divided into two partitions, the left side of the screen showing four ways Norton aids your system: The right partition shows the programs used in each category.
Along the bottom are buttons for LiveUpdate, Options, and Help. The integration of graphics and clearly labeled explanations for items makes it very intuitive. Below is a brief description of features and my comments as to efficiency. Find and Fix Problems has five features. WinDoctor—checks your Windows 95 system for problems. You can check your entire system or an individual part. WinDoctor shows you a list of problems, level of severity, a detailed description of each problem, and an offer to fix those problems.
CrashGuard—this is a memory-resident utility that runs in the background to intercept programs that crash. It did help in partially unfreezing it sometimes so that I could save the program, but still the program would not perform all its functions until I rebooted. I did not find it any more or less successful than other programs as none of them seem to be perfect.
DiskDoctor—diagnoses and repairs problems with your disk. The Surface test took the longest. Another fast and effective tool.
I had a few problems that DiskDoctor found and fixed automatically. Very thorough. UnErase Wizard—recovers your erased files. Gives you much more protection than the Recycle Bin. It gives you a list of all deleted files. You can use specific file names or different words in a file if you cannot remember a name to search for a file. I deleted some files and then retrieved them. Another very welcome feature. File Compare—compares different versions of your files.
I used this function to view files when I had two versions on my system. It puts files side by side for comparison and tells you which is the newest.
Worked very well. Improve Performance has three features. Speed Disk—optimizes your PC’s disk to improve performance. It reorders the files and folders so files open faster and defragments the Windows swap file. Again, very fast and efficient. Optimization Wizard—fine tunes your PC to make applications load faster. It optimizes the swap file, the Registry, and how applications load into memory. Some users had trouble with this feature when Norton Utilities was first released.
Since then there has been a patch, and personally, I had no problems with this feature. It worked very well. My system did run better after. Space Wizard—creates more disk space by finding unneeded files. It gives you a list of files you can delete, compress, or move.
I am very careful with a function such as this. I thoroughly check the files before I delete them. You can do an Express search which only selects files from the Recycle Bin and Temporary files and folders, or you can do a comprehensive search which looks also at large files, duplicates, and commonly discardable files.
The User Guide has a caution statement that Space Wizard identifies files that may be candidates, emphasis on may.
I thought this was helpful because in some programs they don’t really stress this fact.
Optimize your system by using this comprehensive set of tools
The application will help you easily fix various issues and crashes, allowing you to increase the PC stability and speed. By using this utility, you will be able to better organize your hard drives and recover free storage space by removing unnecessary files. Norton Utilities is able to quickly find and remove any duplicates from your hard drives, allowing you to manage your files in a simple and efficient manner. Moreover, the program will help you recover your damaged or accidentally deleted files with just a few mouse clicks.
VIDEO: History of Norton Utilities
The TechSoup donation program for nonprofits – Norton Utilities is a collection This donation provides a license for the latest version of this product to be used. Norton is a Symantec brand known more for its security and antivirus software than its PC system utility software. While Norton Utilities. Norton Utilities free download. Get new version of Norton Utilities. Cleans up hard drives, improves speed ✓ Free ✓ Updated ✓ Download now.