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Roundup of 21 of the week’s best software releases

16 December 2011, Software Publisher

Christmas is most definitely in the air, and to get the party underway we teamed up with IObit to bring you the full version of IObit Advanced SystemCare PRO 4 full promo worth $19.95, completely free of charge.

This comprehensive system maintenance tool includes a variety of components designed to help improve the performance of your computer, eliminate problems and free up disk space. If you’re a fan of taking the hands-on approach to system care you can work through each of the tools individually, but there are also a number of automated options available if you’d like to have things taken care of for you.

This is an exciting giveaway, but there have been a number of other important software releases in the past seven days. Sticking with the system maintenance theme, iolo System Mechanic Free 10.8.1 is a free utility for giving your system a performance boost using the wizard based interface. You can choose to concentrate on speeding up start times, improving stability, and while it is a cut down version of its paid-for big brother, this is an impressive tool.  If managing your hard drive is a concern, Eusing Cleaner 2.1 could help you out, making it easy to remove unnecessary files and registry entries. It is possible that you are already using CCleaner to keep on top of your drive maintenance, and if this is the case, CCEnhancer 2.5 will be of interest. This add-ons brings support for an additional 270 applications so you can clear program histories and other logs with ease.

Move up to an SSD using this migration tool

On the subject of hard drives, one of the easiest ways to boost the performance of your computer – and the battery life of your laptop – is to install an SSD drive. To make it easier to make the transition from your standard hard drive to an SSD replacement, look no further than O&O SSD Migration Kit 6.0.368 (32-bit) or O&O SSD Migration Kit 6.0.368 (64-bit) if you have a 64-bit version of Windows. Sticking with the performance enhancement side of software, System Ninja 2.2.0 is a combination of a task manager and malware blaster. If you’re the type of computer user who likes to know exactly what is going on with your system File Extension Monitor makes it possible to monitor how and when files are created on your computer.

It’s not all about serious utilities this month, there are also a number of multimedia tools worth taking a look at. Helium Audio Converter 1.3.0 makes it easy to convert audio files from one format to another, while Helium Audio Splitter 1.2.0 is a great tool for splitting lengthy audio recordings into a number of individual tracks – great for converting vinyl to MP3. If you need to perform any form of audio editing, look no further than Audacity 1.3.14 which enables you to do just that without needing to learn how to use complicated software. This week also saw the release of Apple iTunes 10.5.2 (32-bit) and Apple iTunes 10.5.2 (64-bit) which includes improvements to the iTunes Match service as well as range of bug fixes.

Relive the original Red Alert using this powerful open source alternative

For something a bit less serious, but still useful, DS Clock 2.6.2 (32-bit) and DS Clock 2.6.2 (64-bit) are highly customisable clock for your Windows desktop complete with alarms and chimes on the quarter hour. For serious digital photographer, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 3.6 is an incredibly valuable tool that will enable you to keep on top of your photo collection. For a little light relief, look no further than OpenRA v20111013 which is a superbly impressive open source version of the strategy game Red Alert.

This week saw a number of important browser releases starting with Opera 11.60 which boasts a more Firefox like look and improvement to performance and stability. For fans of portable software, Opera Portable 11.60 is also available. But the big browser release of the week has to be Chrome 16 FINAL which now features multi-user support, complete with individual Google account synchronization. If you’d like to test out the next version of the web browser, take a look at Google Chrome 17.0.963.12 Dev.

That’s it for another week – join us again in a week’s time for the final roundup before Christmas.

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