The “registry cleaner” market was massive in 2010/2011, with many people looking for simple ways to resolve core computing problems (particularly with the newly released Windows 7).
With the introduction of Windows 10, and the ensuing updates to both the core and wider system level settings, the market dissipated for the registry repair tools – replaced *either* with demand for a more deeper “system optimization” tool, or consolidating to the most effective tool (which turned out to be CCleaner).
We've been in the PC market long enough to know that the majority of promoted “registry cleaner” tools are nothing more than vaporware. However, their premise (an automated cleaning solution for Windows) is still valid – and is why it's important to consider your various options if you're in the business of keeping your computer system running as smoothly as possible.
What *Are* Registry Cleaners?
The crux of “registry cleaner” tools has been to “clean” the “registry” database of Windows. This database basically exists to store all the “settings” that your system may have inside – with everything from your background wallpaper to your login information stored inside.
Whilst the registry works well, it can often become bloated, damaged or infected with viruses – leading to a varying number of problems with Windows systems. The idea behind “registry cleaners” was that you'd be able to repair these various problems by using an automated tool to “fix” errors inside the registry.
The problem with this was that many of the tools were either unable to “fix” the errors that people had on their systems, or were downright dangerous (deleting incorrect settings etc). This is why many people became weary of the various registry cleaner tools – they ended up becoming extremely ineffectual, bordering on “scams”. Popularity for a number of products – including the likes of “RegCure” imploded.
Do They Work & Which Tools Are Best?
Ultimately, like many automated tools, “registry cleaners” do have the capacity to work to some degree.
The key is understanding that these tools should form part of a wider strategy for keeping digital systems running as smoothly as possible. To do this, you need to appreciate the following:
- Remove file-based system errors
- Fix filepath reference issues
- Clean up temporary files (both for the OS and other software)
- Fix relative issues within Windows (user settings etc)
The best “registry cleaner” tools are not only those which perform the above as effectively as possible, but also ensure that whenever you're scanning through your system, you're able to keep track of all the resource usage that your system may have.
This not only ensures that you'll be able to get the most out of the tool, but that you'll also to effectively gauge the quality of service it provides.
Registry Cleaners 2018
To summarize the “registry cleaner” market for 2018, the following are the only real players in the market right now:
ioBit Advanced System Care
A popular tool, backed by 24/7 support – it's one of the longest standing “registry cleaner” applications to have been released. It's able to fix a large number of “scanning items”, through which it's able to remove any of the potential problems that Windows computers may have. Unfortunately, has a long standing issue with being considered “bloatware”. Often over-inflates purported results, leading to potential conflicts with the underlying OS (Windows).
This is by far the most popular “registry cleaner” tool – the “cloud” edition simply adds the ability to track & manage various systems through a central “web” interface. Despite the added functionality, the core issue with CCleaner still remains; which is that it basically doesn't have a very powerful core engine. In other words, it doesn't find many errors.
Based on the “Frontline Registry Cleaner 2.0” system (both of which having been published as “open source”), this is new type of system labelled a “stack manager”. The point of FLCleaner 3.0 is to basically take what CCleaner Cloud did very well (tracking of systems), and tie it to the software that a computer might be using. Specifically, rather than determining system based errors, this tool can identify and resolve platform centric ones. The benefit of this is that it works across all modern devices (Windows/Linux/Mac/Android/iOS etc) to provide overview of the entire digital infrastructure you may be running. Also backed by 24/7 support.
Uniblue Registry Cleaner Kit
Uniblue have been a big player in the PC software business for many years. Their popular products – DriverBooster and RegistryMechanic – were extremely popular. Unfortunately, the market has lead to somewhat of an exodus of buyers from this company – leading to their consolidation of a number of products. One of the main ones is the “Registry Cleaner Kit” – into which they put their “registry” engineering prowess. This tool is somewhat effective at cleaning up typical Windows errors.
Iolo System Mechanic
Finally, this is an “all in one” tool for optimizing Windows based systems. It works by providing you with access to 100's of “settings” / options which can be managed from within the application itself. A highly effective tool by any standard.
The way to ensure you are using the most effective tool is to consider whether you're using for home or business. If you're going to be using for business, you need to ensure that you have a system which is both effective and secure.