Every so often, a client asks me if a particular utility software is worth purchasing. Usually the software claims it will speed up their computer or fix hidden problems or provide some other benefit. Given that the history of personal computing is full of tips and tricks that helped users tweak their computers to work better, the vast number of utility software out there is no surprise. However, what most people don’t realize is that in today’s day and age, much of this software provides virtually no benefit, or at worst, is an outright scam.
The first thing to realize is that modern computers are simultaneously both more reliable and more complex. The evolution of cars and computers makes a good analogy. Many people used to maintain their own cars and similarly many people became accustomed to maintaining their own computers. As cars have become more reliable and complex, now most people simply bring their cars in to be periodically maintained. The same can be true of computers today.
Modern computers do not need the level of maintenance that older computers did. Yes, there are some routine things that should be done to keep a computer running well. But many of the questionable utility softwares perform actions that are of dubious value. Combined with the fact that the complexity of modern computers makes tinkering with the system software a risky venture, most users take their computing lives into their own hands when they choose to use a utility software.
I recently became aware of a software named MacKeeper that was causing some of my clients problems. I had seen the advertisements for MacKeeper all over the Internet this year and my immediate thought was “why does anyone need this software?” Mac computers are the most reliable computers out there. Only a minimal amount of maintenance is needed. Why would anyone want to muck up their computer with software that does a bunch of relatively useless things? I didn’t pay it much heed until I learned that some of my clients had purchased this software and it ended up causing them problems. For a program that is supposed to make your computer work better, that is a catastrophic failure in my opinion!
Bottom line, rather than trusting some software that attempts to automate potentially risky operations, it is best to ask for help from a qualified computer professional. My Computer Tune-Up service can take care of all your periodic maintenance needs and you get the peace of mind that a professional with a lifetime of experience is taking care of your computer and data. Feel free to contact me anytime if you feel your computer needs some service.