System Mechanic 7 Professional has five major components to it. These are System Mechanic 7, Search and Recover 4, DriverScrubber 3, Virus Protection, and a Personal Firewall.
System Mechanic 7 is the main component of the PC maintenance utilities. When you first launch the program you’re presented with a screen that tells you System Analysis is Required. When you click the Analyze Now button you have the option of selecting to perform a Quick Analysis or a Deep Analysis. The first choice takes only a few minutes and checks your system for the most common problems. The deep analysis takes much longer and looks for all types of problems.
Upon completing you’ll see a screen that tells you all of the problems System Mechanic found. The program looks at an impressive number of areas to keep you informed about your PC’s health including, firewall and Antivirus status, registry issues, system clutter, security vulnerabilities, and unnecessary startup items. You can choose to let System Mechanic repair all the problems for you or run a wizard to let you inspect the problems that were detected and chose which ones you’d like to fix.
Search and Recover 4 is a handy utility for helping you find and recover lost files that are on your hard drive. You can even search CD/DVD drivers, USB drives, floppy disks, digital camera memory sticks and MP3 players and recover email. The email recovery tool works with Microsoft Outlook or Outlook Express, Thunderbird, Netscape Mail and Eudora.
DriveScrubber 3 is a utility for securely erasing all files from your hard drive. As you may know, when a file is deleted it’s not actually gone from your PC until another file overwrites the space that it occupied. This means that confidential, or person files, can be recovered using the right software. DriveScrubber overwrites all sectors where a file existed making it impossible to recover. In addition, you can completely wipe all contents of your hard drive. This is a must have feature if you ever plan to get rid of a hard drive or your computer. Before disposing on a hard drive you should always be sure that it is wiped clean of all your information for security reasons, ensuring your privacy and preventing identity theft from someone who may find the drive. DriveScrubber will do this for you.
System Mechanic 7 Professional also includes an Antivirus program and a Personal Firewall. If you don’t already have these on your computer then the added benefit of these two programs will help keep your PC free from viruses and other forms of PC attacks as well as preventing hackers from accessing your PC and destroying or stealing your files.
The email recovery tool in Search and Recover 4 doesn’t appear to work with Windows Mail, despite the fact that the program is supposed to be Windows Vista compatible. It also will not work for online accounts (web-based email).
There are also additional features that are unavailable under Windows Vista, such as increasing performance using the defragmentation tool. The online documentation states that this is because “Vista includes security restrictions that block access to functionality utilized by these tools." The support article claims that this is because Microsoft prevents third party companies from creating tools that can work around these restrictions and that resolution is expected to come from Microsoft updates to Windows Vista rather than changes to the software itself. Having used a number of system utilities that work just fine with Windows Vista, I’m concerned that iolo Systems appears to be leaving the problem with Microsoft rather than finding it’s own solution. I also don’t like purchasing a product that claims to be Vista compatible only to find out that it isn’t the case.