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Getting Started with Max Utilities

About this section: The Getting Started Guide is designed to help you begin using Max Utilities immediately. It provides an overview of Max Utilities, covers the installation process and describes the most used functions of Max Utilities. It does not cover the full range of the functions of Max Utilities or describe them comprehensively. To learn the full extent of these functions, please click the link to the corresponding section where this topic is covered in its entirety.

  • Installing Max Utilities
    What are the minimum system requirements for installing Max Utilities?
    Where do I download the latest version of Max Utilities?
    How do I install and register Max Utilities (Online)?
    How do I install the trial version of Max Utilities (Online)?
  • Getting Started with Max Utilities
    How do I maintain good system health using Max Utilities?
  • Clean Your Registry
    Why should I clean the Windows Registry?
    What Registry sections are scanned?
    How do I clean the Windows Registry?
    How do I repair problems?
  • Compact Your Registry
    How do I compact my Registry?
  • Optimize Windows
    How do I optimize Windows?
  • Boost Your Windows Startup
    My system takes too long to start up. What should I do?
  • Clear Your Windows History
    How do I clear Windows History?
  • Clear Your Browser History
    How do I clear my browser's History?
  • Clear Your Third Party Traces
    How do I clean and manage third party software?
  • Bleach Disks
    How do I bleach disks?
  • Shred Files
    How do I shred files?
    What is the difference between Disk Bleaching and Permanently shredding Files?
  • Restore Registry Backups
    How do I restore Registry backups?
  • Uninstall unused or unwanted programs
    How do I uninstall unused or unwanted programs?
  • What are the minimum system requirements for installing Max Utilities?

    Microsoft® Windows® XP SP3 (32bit only)

    * CPU: Pentium® 4 or equivalent 233 Mhz (minimum) | Core™2Duo or equivalent 300 Mhz (recommended)
    * Memory: 64 MB (minimum) | 128 MB (recommended)

    Microsoft Windows Vista® (32bit and 64bit)

    * CPU: 1 Ghz
    * Memory: 1 GB

    Microsoft Windows 8/7

    * CPU: 1 Ghz
    * 1 GB for 32 bit or 2 GB for 64 bit

    Hardware Requirements

    * HDD: 500 MB free
    * Video: SVGA (1024x768)
    * CD-ROM drive (if not installing via electronic software download)

    Support for Browser Protection Features

    * Google Chrome® 10.0 or later
    * Microsoft Internet Explorer® 6.0 or later (32-bit only)
    * Mozilla Firefox® 3.0 or later

    Where do I download the latest version of Max Utilities?
    Thank you for choosing Max Utilities. You can download the latest version here: http://www.maxutilities.com/en-us/download.html. More download instructions are available on this page.

    How do I install and register Max Utilities (Online)?
    Once you have downloaded the setup file from our website, double-click the file to launch the setup process. The Installation wizard will guide you through the easy setup steps.

    Note: You will need an Internet connection to download Max Utilities.

    Installing the full version of Max Utilities

    Step 1. Accept the End User License Agreement (EULA) by clicking on the Agree button.

    Step 2. Licence Code: You will be presented with a screen which prompts you for your license details. If you have already purchased Max Utilities, then enter your license details exactly as sent to you in your confirmation email. You may copy the license from your email and paste it into the license code field by placing your cursor within the field and then clicking the Paste License button. Click Register to register your software license.

    Step 3. Select one of these installation options: Easy Install or Custom Install.

    * Easy Install– This is the default installation process with pre-configured parameters to install the product on your PC easily.
    * Custom Install– This is the customized installation process by which you can define the installation location for the product on your PC.

    Step 4. Follow the prompts in the setup process to install Max Utilities. The Did You Know Screens during setup present you with useful information about how Max Utilities can help boost your system's performance.

    Step 5. After successful installation, Max Utilities will prompt you to begin a scan of your computer immediately. Click Yes to begin a Complete Registry Scan. Click No and Finish to exit setup.

    How do I install the trial version of Max Utilities (Online)?
    Step 1. Download the setup file from our website:(http://www.maxutilities.com/en-us/download.html)

    Step 2. Double-click the file to launch the setup process. The Installation wizard will guide you through the easy setup steps.

    Note: You will need an Internet connection to download Max Utilities.

    Step 3. Accept the End User License Agreement (EULA) by clicking on the Agree button.

    Step 4. Licence Code: You will be presented with a screen which prompts you for your license details. Ignore this section and proceed to install.

    Note: the trial version of Max Utilities has limited features.

    Step 5. Select one of these installation options: Easy Install or Custom Install.

    * Easy Install– This is the default installation process with pre-configured parameters to install the product on your PC easily.
    * Custom Install– This is the customized installation process by which you can define the installation location for the product on your PC.

    Step 6. Follow the prompts to install Max Utilities. The Did You Know Screens during setup present you with useful information about how Max Utilities can help boost your system's performance.

    Step 7. After successful installation, Max Utilities will prompt you to begin a scan of your computer immediately. Click Yes to begin a Complete Registry Scan. Click No and Finish to exit setup.

    How do I maintain good system health using Max Utilities?
    Maintaining good health on your system is integral to your system functioning optimally. We recommend that you perform the following tasks consistently to maintain good system health:

    Clean your Registry

    Cleaning your registry and removing invalid entries will improve your system's performance stability.

    Step 1. Click the Clean Your Registry button under the Performance tab.
    Step 2. Select Complete Registry Scan which will search for registry errors in all areas of your system.
    Step 3. Click Start Scan to begin scanning. If Max Utilities finds any problems, it will list them at the end of the scan.
    Step 4. Select and click Repair to fix all problems.

    Compact Your Registry

    Registry compacting removes gaps, wasted space and corrupt keys from the registry, and performs physical defragmentation of the Windows registry files.

    Step 1. Click the Compact Your Registry button under the Performance tab.
    Step 2. Click Start to begin analyzing your registry. Once analysis is complete, you will be presented with the results.
    Step 3. Click Apply to apply the compacting changes.

    Clear your Windows History (checking Document History)

    Step 1. Click the Clear Your Windows History button under the Privacy tab.
    Step 2. Ensure that Document History is checked. Note that this option is not selected by default.
    Step 3. Click Save Choices to confirm your selection.
    Step 4. Click Clean Windows to begin cleaning your Windows History.

    Bleaching your Disks

    Max Utilities's bleaching feature ensures that your previously deleted files are unrecoverable from your computer. Please note that bleaching does not destroy or remove existing data; it is only performed on the existing free space available on your hard drive.

    To completely eliminate the history trail of your deleted files, the bleacher will scramble your Master File Tables records during the next system startup.

    Step 1. Select the Privacy tab and click the Bleach Disks button.
    Step 2. Use the toggle button to enable/disable disk bleaching. A list of drives is presented on the screen.
    Step 3. Select the drive/s on which you wish to perform bleaching.
    Step 4. Clean Master File Table Records: Selecting this option will clean the Master File Table Records. The Master File table is the place where information about every file and directory on an NTFS volume is stored. It a relational database table, containing various attributes about different files. It acts as the "starting point" and central management feature of an NTFS volume.
    Step 5. Click Clean Disks to bleach space on the selected drives.

    Why should I clean the Windows Registry?
    The Windows registry is a database used to store important settings and configuration information for Windows operating systems and Windows cannot operate without it.

    The registry contains information and settings for all the hardware, software, users, and preferences of your computer and operating system.

    Whenever a user makes changes to the Control Panel settings, file associations, system policies or installed software, the changes are reflected and stored in the registry. Running an application on your computer can make several changes to your registry.

    Over time, invalid entries or orphaned references can accumulate in the Windows registry. These problems may accumulate for several reasons as following:

    * Uninstalling or incorrectly removing software, resulting in invalid file or folder references as well as orphaned startup programs
    * Having missing or corrupt hardware or software drivers installed.
    * Deleting files referenced by shortcuts.
    * An accumulation of invalid entries can slow down your system, cause it to generate error messages, prevent programs from functioning properly or result in your system becoming unstable and crashing.

    Registry cleaning will detect and remove these errors.

    What Registry sections are scanned?

    The following sections are scanned securely to ensure registry integrity and optimization:

    * Software Locations- this section contains the locations of software applications installed on the system. These locations are registered in the registry during application installation.

    * Registry Integrity- this section contains critical Windows shell folder entries, which include folders such as My Documents, Favorites, Profiles, etc.

    * Windows Fonts- this section contains the list of fonts that are registered in the fonts folder of the Windows operating system.

    * Help and Resources- The Windows standard states that applications should register their help files in this section of the registry.

    * Shared DLLs- this section contains the list of information associated with shared control files that are registered on the system.

    * Startup Programs- Windows registers items that are set to run at Windows startup in this section of the registry. These registry entries contain references to the locations of these items on the hard drive. To view the items that are set to run when Windows 98 / Me / XP starts up, click on Start -> Run -> type "msconfig" -> OK. When the System Configuration Utility displays, select the Startup tab to display the list of Startup Items.

    * Add/Remove Programs- software can be cleanly uninstalled using the standard Windows 'Add or Remove Programs' applet, which can be accessed from the Windows Control Panel.

    * If software removal was not conducted via the 'Add or Remove Programs' facility (for example, if a program was removed from the system by deleting the actual program installation folder through Windows Explorer), the link to the uninstall file will remain in the 'Add or Remove Programs' list.

    * Virtual Devices- this section contains the list of information associated with virtual drivers that are registered on the system.

    * File Extensions- this section contains the list of file extensions that are usually registered in the registry during application installation. These problems can occur when the uninstaller of the application removes the program files from the hard drive, but does not remove the associated file extensions from the registry.

    * Temp Files / Shortcuts- when a registry scan is conducted, Max Utilities scans all selected locations in the Options -> Shortcut Settings screen and removes orphaned shortcuts, temporary (.tmp) files and Scandisk or Checkdisk fragment (.chk) files from the hard drive.

    * Custom Controls- when applications are installed, they register their custom control file locations as new entries in this section of the registry.

    * Deep Scan- the Deep Scan section covers areas of the registry not covered by the above-mentioned sections.

    How do I clean the Windows Registry?
    Step 1. Select the Performance Tab and click the button Clean Your Registry.

    Step 2. Select the type of scan to run. There are two available scan options:

    * Complete Registry Scan: A deep and comprehensive scan of the Windows registry. A Complete Registry Scan searches your Windows registry for invalid entries in all sections of the registry.
    * Custom Registry Scan: A Custom Scan allows you to select the sections of the registry to include in the scan. If choosing a Custom Scan, select areas of the registry to be cleaned from the list displayed.

    Step 3. (OPTIONAL) Configure Ignore Lists: The “Ignore List” screen lists the values or subkeys that have been added to the users Ignore Lists from the scan results screen. Any values you have added can be viewed and accessed by clicking the "Values" tab. Likewise, any subkeys added can be accessed by clicking on the "Keys" tab.

    The “Ignore List” manager screen has three buttons below the lists used for modifying items within your Value or Keys Ignore Lists. These functions only affect items within the selected list.

    * Add - allows you to create a new value or subkey from scratch and add it to your list.
    * Remove - allows you to remove specific items from your Ignore Lists. To remove items from this list, select their check boxes and click the Remove button. You can remove single items by highlighting them and clicking this button.

    Note: Max Utilities also contains an Internal Ignore List, which is different from this Ignore List. Updates to this list are released periodically and can be obtained via Smart Update.

    Step 4. Click Start Scan to begin scanning your system for registry errors. During a scan, Max Utilities will search your Windows registry for invalid entries. As scanning proceeds, the progress bar indicates the progress of the scan and the problems found under each scan category. You can stop the scan at any point by clicking the red Stop icon.

    Step 5. At the end of the scan, the scan results are displayed. From this screen, you can safely repair the invalid entries to improve your system's performance stability. Max Utilities will automatically create registry backups each time you repair problems, so it is easy to restore backups if you need to do so at a later point in time.

    How do I repair problems?
    When Max Utilities has finished scanning your system, it will display the scan results listing the problems it found during the scan. All the scanned sections are listed along with the number of problems found in them.

    By default all detected items are checked and ready for repair. You can review the results and select Repair to repair all detected items.

    Note: If you are an experienced user, you may also modify the action properties of each problem here before you implement any repairs and changes into the Windows registry using the Repair function.

    Step 1. Click on a section in the section panel to view the problems under that section.

    Step 2. Double-click on a problem to display the expanded view of the problem with more information about it.

    Step 3. Click All sections to view all problems found in the scan. The details of each problem displayed on the Scan Results screen include:

    * Priority level of the problem and a brief description of the problem.
    * Location in the registry where the problem was found.
    * Name of the problematic value and the data it contains.

    Note: while Max Utilities is running in Trial Mode, some sections of the registry cannot be modified and repaired. These restricted sections and their problems are indicated with padlock symbols on the scan results screen.

    Step 4. Modifying Scan Results - to modify a problem, select a problem and right-click to display the action menu shown below. This menu lists all actions that can be performed on problems before repairing. Select the appropriate action from this menu.

    Note: for some problems, not all actions may be available.

    A - Keep Item: by default, all problems on the scan results screen are automatically selected for deletion.
    B - Delete Item: to delete an item after repairing it, select Delete Item from the Action menu.
    C - Add Value/Subkey to ignore list: to prevent a registry entry's value or key from being repaired when the Repair function is executed and from being detected in future scans, add the value or subkey to your personalized Ignore Lists.
    D - Delete All: in addition to repairing specific problems, all problems within a selected section of the scan results screen can be repaired.
    E - To repair all problems within a section, select the section on the left then select "Delete All" from the Action menu.

    Step 5. When you are satisfied with the actions and modifications to all problems listed on the scan results screen, click the Repair button. Clicking this button applies all actions and modifications on the scan results screen to the relevant entries in the registry, including additions to Ignore Lists.

    How do I compact my Registry?
    Registry compacting removes gaps, wasted space and corrupt keys from the registry, and performs physical defragmentation of the Windows registry files.

    When the compacting process is complete, the registry acquires a linear structure, which reduces application response and registry access times, and improves system performance.

    Compacting the registry

    Recommended : check the “Create System Restore Point” option before compacting your registry.

    Step 1. Select the Performance tab and click on the Compact Your Registry button.

    Step 2. Select Continue to start cleaning the registry.

    There are three stages in registry compacting:

    * Analyze - during this stage, Max Utilities analyzes your registry for gaps, free space and corrupt key and backs up before registry cleaning.
    * Preview Results - Once the cleaning starts, the system checks for obsolete registry entries and automatically removes them from the registry. After cleaning has completed, a screen presents you with the spaced wasted on your computer and the % of space saved.
    * Registry Compact - Once the cleaning is complete after backup, you will view a Registry Compact Screen on your computer.

    Step 3. Click Apply to apply the changes made during the first step (i.e. Analyze). You are required to restart your computer to reflect the changes in your registry.

    How do I optimize Windows?
    The Windows Optimization feature presents you with different profile options with pre-configured settings . You can choose the profile that best suits your needs by moving the slider to the profile of your choice.

    Step 1. Click on the Performance tab > Optimize Windows to access this screen. By default, the Performance Profiles feature is disabled and this screen will appear grayed out. To enable it, click the On icon. Once this icon is green, this feature is enabled.

    Step 2. Select a profile by using the slider. The performance slider bar displays three settings:

    F - Best Appearance – slide the bar to this profile if you wish to optimize Windows for Best Appearance.
    G - Balanced – the default profile setting, the Balanced profile has pre-configured settings which provide you with the optimal balance between appearance and performance.
    H - Best Performance – slide the bar to this profile if you wish to optimize Windows for Best Performance.

    Note: the Best Performance setting will alter your Windows visual settings.

    Once you have selected a profile, the list of pre-configured settings for this profile is displayed below as enabled automatically.

    Step 3. Click Apply to apply your changes when you first turn on the profile and for subsequent profile changes.

    Note: turning off the performance profile will disengage all optimizations..

    My system takes too long to start up. What should I do?
    If your system takes a long time to startup, it is possible that you may have too many programs set to boot up automatically with Windows Startup.

    Step 1. Select the Performance tab

    Step 2. Click the button Boost Your Windows Start-up to access this screen. This screen allows you to preview, manage and control your system's startup applications. The Boost Windows Startup screen displays a list of all programs and applications running on your computer during boot up.

    Step 3. Select or deselect applications from the list displayed.

    Step 4. Click Apply to save your changes.

    How do I clear Windows History?
    This function allows the selective cleaning and management of your online activity data retained by your Internet browser in the following sections:

    * Document History
    * Find/Search Folder History
    * Scan Disk temporary files
    * Clipboard content
    * Run History
    * Temporary Files directory
    * Windows Recycle Bin

    Step 1. Select the Privacy tab and click the Clear your Windows History button. The Windows section is automatically highlighted in the left panel.

    Step 2. Use the toggle button to enable/disable the Clear Your Windows History feature. A list of different items is displayed along with a brief description of each item. A default selection is enabled.

    Note: document History is not enabled in the default selection.

    Step 3. Select the items to be cleaned from the list to clear their history. You can do this by selecting or deselecting items from the default selection.

    Step 4. Click Save Choices to confirm your selection. This action is required if you have made any changes to the default selection.

    Step 5. Click Clean Windows to clear history from all the listed items. Please note that clicking Clean All will run a full privacy scan including the Browsers, Plugins and Free Space (if enabled) sections.

    As the privacy cleaning begins, the progress bar indicates the extent and areas of cleaning. Once cleaning is complete, the Privacy Scan Results is displayed listing the Total Number of Sections cleaned, Total Number of Items cleaned and the Disk Space recovered.

    How do I clear my browser's History?
    To clean your online traces, you will need to clear your browsers where information about the sites you visit are recorded periodically in the following sections.

    * Cache, History, and Address bar
    * Index.dat
    * AutoComplete Form Data - data previously filled in any web form including all saved passwords
    * Downloaded Program files

    This function allows the selective cleaning of history information contained in your Browser's History. Browsers supported include Internet Explorer, Firefox, Google Chrome, Opera, Safari, NetScape and Mozilla web browsers.

    Step 1. Select the Privacy tab and click the Clear your Browser History button. The Browsers section is automatically highlighted in the left panel.

    Step 2. Use the toggle button to enable/disable the Clean Internet Browser Settings feature.

    Step 3. A list of different browsers is displayed along with their status (installed or not). Browsers that you do not have installed will be grayed out. A second column lists items to be cleaned.

    Step 4. To prevent specific cookies from being cleaned, you will need to save them as Cookies you wish to retain.

    Note: This is only available for Internet Explorer, Firefox and Chrome. Click Select which cookies you want to retain - In the list of available cookies, select the check boxes next to the cookies that you wish to keep.

    Step 5. Select the Internet browser to erase its browsing history. Select the item/s to clean from the item list column. Items include:

    * Cache, History, and Address bar
    * Index.dat
    * AutoComplete Form Data - data previously filled in any web form including all saved passwords
    * Downloaded Program files

    Step 6. Click Save Choices to confirm your selection. This action is required if you have made any changes to the default selection.

    Step 7. Click Clean Browsers to clear their history. Please note that clicking Clean All will run a full privacy scan including the Browsers, Plugins and Free Space (if enabled) sections.

    How do I clean and manage third party software?
    This section allows you to clean history information contained by any third party software you may have installed on your system.

    Step 1. Select the Privacy tab and click Clean Your Third Party Software Traces button. The Plugins section is automatically highlighted in the left panel.
    Step 2. Use the toggle button to enable/disable Third Party Application Plug-ins feature.
    Step 3. A list of third party software is displayed along with their status (installed or not).
    Step 4. Select the third party software to clean.
    Step 5. Click Save Choices to confirm your selection. This action is required if you have made any changes to the default selection.
    Step 6. Click Clean Plugins to clear their history.

    Note: clicking Clean All will run a full privacy scan including the Browsers, Plugins and Free Space (if enabled) sections.

    How do I bleach disks?
    Max Utilities's bleaching feature ensures that your previously deleted files are unrecoverable from your computer. Please note that bleaching does not destroy or remove existing data; it is only performed on the existing free space available on your hard drive.

    To completely eliminate the history trail of your deleted files, the bleacher will scramble your Master File Tables records during the next system startup.

    Step 1. Select the Privacy tab and click the Bleach Disks button.
    Step 2. Use the toggle button to enable/disable disk bleaching. A list of drives is presented on the screen.
    Step 3. Select the drive/s on which you wish to perform bleaching.
    Step 4. Clean Master File Table Records: Selecting this option will clean the Master File Table Records. The Master File table is the place where information about every file and directory on an NTFS volume is stored. It a relational database table, containing various attributes about different files. It acts as the "starting point" and central management feature of an NTFS volume.
    Step 5. Click Clean Disks to bleach space on the selected drives.

    How do I shred files?
    The shredding function permanently deletes Files, Folders and Recycle Bin content making these files unrecoverable.

    Step1. Select the Privacy tab and click the Shred Files button.
    Step 2. Add files to be shredded. You can do this simply by dragging and dropping files from your Windows explorer or by clicking Add and manually selecting files using the Browse option.
    Step 3. Items selected are displayed in the list under File/Folder Path. You may add or remove files by selecting them and clicking the Add and Remove respectively.
    Step 4. Select the file you want to shred
    Step 5. Click the Open button to add the file to the shredding list.
    Step 6. Click Shred to shred the selected files.

    Note- Favorite Locations: Once the file or folder is listed in the shredder list, you may use the right-click option to add the location to favorites. For subsequent use, you can easily browse to your favorite locations to add files for shredding.

    Once shredding is complete, Shredding Results are displayed listing the Total Number of Items for Shredding, Total Number of Items Shredded, Total Number of Items Not Shredded and Disk Space recovered.

    What is the difference between Disk Bleaching and Permanently shredding Files?
    Disk Bleaching: Disk bleaching bleaches free space in your hard drive to ensure that no data can be recovered from the free space in your hard drive.

    Permanently Shredding Files: Shredding is a process by which files are permanently deleted from a specific location on your computer.

    How do I restore Registry backups?
    Max Utilities automatically creates registry backups each time you repair problems, so it is easy to restore backups if you need to do so at a later point in time.

    Step 1. Select the Recovery tab.
    Step 2. A list of previous registry backups is presented.
    Step 3. Select the latest backup. Only under very specific circumstances would you need to restore any other backup.
    Step 4. Click Restore to restore the backup.

    Advanced User: if you are an experienced user, you may select a backup and click Open to view the subkeys associated with that backup. You may then select the subkeys to restore by checking their boxes and then clicking the Restore button.

    How do I uninstall unused or unwanted programs?
    Unused or unwanted programs installed on your computer can take up a lot of your memory and hard disk space, decreasing the speed and performance of your computer. If you are an average user, you might find it difficult to identify the right programs to uninstall. The Uninstaller feature identifies and allows you to remove these unused or unwanted programs safely.

    The Uninstaller analyzes all installed programs on your computer and recommends the programs to uninstall based on the date they were last used and their size, with both of these parameters configurable under Settings > Uninstaller.

    When you open the Uninstaller screen under the Recovery tab, a list of all programs installed is presented. You are able to sort the applications by the date of their last use or by their size. Applications we recommend that you uninstall are automatically highlighted in this list.

    Uninstalling the applications will remove the selected programs safely, and free up space on your computer. After uninstall is complete, Registry and Privacy scans to clean your Windows registry and privacy data respectively run automatically.

    You may also access the Uninstaller screen by running the 1-Click Optimization feature on the Dashboard, which runs a series of optimization tasks to improve your system's performance including recommending programs for you to uninstall.