We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
Utilities software Reviews
15,670 Reviews

Symantec Norton Utilities 15 review

£30.71 inc VAT

Manufacturer: Symantec

Our Rating: We rate this 3 out of 5

These days, the real question with paid-for optimisation software such as Symantec Norton Utilities 15 is not whether it works or how well, but whether you actually need it.

These days, the real question with paid optimisation software such as Symantec Norton Utilities 15 (£39 as of January 5, 2011) is not whether it works or how well, but whether you actually need it. With the speed of today's PCs, and with advances in both Windows and its file systems, problems such as disk fragmentation simply aren't the concern they once were.

Moreover, you can use competent freebies such as Piriform's CCleaner for Registry and file housekeeping, and the free version of UltimateDefrag for disk defragmentation, not to mention Windows' own built-in tools. So where does a program such as Norton Utilities 15.0 fit in?

Questions of necessity aside, Norton Utilities 15 brings all the Windows and PC housekeeping tools you could possibly desire under one extremely friendly and easy-to-use roof. Disk defragmentation, Registry cleaning and defragmentation, selection of which Windows services should be running - all are present and accounted for, and simple enough to use. Norton Utilities 15 also provides quick access to information on performance and running processes, as well as a Registry-backup function and an undelete utility to recover accidentally deleted files - again, nothing revolutionary, but all tried and true. All worked perfectly in our hands-on tests.

This new version of Norton Utilities adds what Symantec calls Speed Disk, an updated way of defragmenting and optimising your hard drive; Disk Doctor, for scanning a hard drive for potential issues and fixing those problems; and UnErase Wizard, for restoring files more easily.

Symantec makes some fine products, and you might find a number of useful components within Norton Utilities 15; but like Iolo Technologies' System Mechanic, Norton Utilities may have outlived its usefulness. If your system isn't running as fast as you think it should, uninstalling unnecessary software and pruning background applications using Windows' own tools or downloadable freebies are a more cost-effective first defence.

Next page: Our expert verdict >>

See also:

12 amazing productivity boosters

CCleaner 2.17 review

Iolo System Mechanic 9.5 review

Symantec Norton Utilities 15 Expert Verdict »

300MHz processor
Windows XP/Vista/7
200MB hard-disk space
internet connection (to activate the product)
must meet the minimum operating system requirements of Vista and Window 7
  • Overall: We give this item 6 of 10 overall

Although Norton Utilities 15 is stylish and works well, you're spending money for tools already provided with Windows or available for free elsewhere.

  • Symantec Norton Utilities 14 review

    Symantec Norton Utilities 14

    Symantec bills Norton Utilities as a way to keep Windows PCs running longer by sprucing up their performance.

  • Iolo System Mechanic 8.5 review

    Iolo System Mechanic 8.5

    System Mechanic 8.5 is more than just a disk and registry cleanup tool. It aims to tune your entire system for peak performance. It will let you optimise just about everything else on your system.

  • Iolo System Mechanic 10 review

    Iolo System Mechanic 10

    Iolo System Mechanic 10 is the latest update to the popular Windows tune-up tool that promises to uncover why your PC is running so slowly. And then fix it.

  • VCom Fix-It Utilities 6.0

    VCom Fix-It Utilities 6.0

    One day your PC will crash, pick up a virus or get its Registry tied in a knot. This is where VCom Fix-It comes in.

  • Iolo System Mechanic 7.5 review

    Iolo System Mechanic 7.5

    Iolo System Mechanic backs up, repairs, and compacts the Windows Registry; protects against spyware; optimises startup files and system memory; and tweaks internet connection settings.

IDG UK Sites

Samsung Galaxy S6 review: Hands-on with the new Samsung Galaxy. Samsung's flagship is more iPhone-lr......

IDG UK Sites

5 things we hate about MWC: What it's like to be a journalist at a technology trade show

IDG UK Sites

Ractive powers The Guardian's interactive infographics – and lets novice coders build complex...

IDG UK Sites

What does that mean? A jargon-buster dictionary of tech terms for Apple fans