Soluto is a quick, simple way to optimize and manage one or more computers – it really shines for managing multiple ones. If you’re already tech support for family or friends, Soluto can save you a lot of time.
We’ve written about Soluto in the past, when it was in a closed beta. Anyone can now sign up for a free Soluto account and manage up to five computers from the same account.
To get started with Soluto, you’ll have to create an account on the Soluto website. After you create the account, download the Soluto client to your current computer from the web interface.
This web page is your control panel, where you can manage all the computers you’ve installed Soluto on.
You can also add other people’s computers and manage them from here. This makes Soluto ideal for troubleshooting computers belonging to your friends and family – especially if you’re already their tech support.
You can use Soluto to manage computers even if they’re offline or disconnected from the Internet. Your actions will be queued up and Soluto will perform them the next time the computers powers on and connects to the Internet.
After installing Soluto, you’ll want to restart your computer so you can start managing startup programs.
When your computer starts, Soluto watches the programs that start and analyzes their impact on your boot time.
You can launch the Soluto application from the system tray or access the Soluto website in your web browser. The desktop application currently has fewer options than the web interface.
Click the “Chop Boot” option to start managing the programs that start with your computer. Soluto informs you of the impact each program has on your startup and shows the programs you can safely remove.
Select an application and Soluto will tell you what the program does and give you a more specific recommendation. For less experienced users, it’s easier than using a traditional autostart-managing tool that provides no additional information. For more experienced users, it provides boot time benchmarks and saves you from Googling process names you may be unfamiliar with.
Soluto can “pause” programs, preventing them from starting at boot (if you need to launch your paused programs, you can do this from the Soluto system tray icon). It can also “delay” programs instead of disabling them entirely – delayed programs will start when the computer is idle, so they won’t slow down boot time. This is ideal for programs that you may want to run in the background, but don’t need to run immediately, including updater applications.
Soluto will show you the impact of your choices on your boot time.
The Soluto website has a slightly different interface with the same information.
Web Browser Management
A computer’s web browser is one of its most frequently used applications, but it can become burdened by toolbars and add-ons. With Soluto, you can quickly disable web browser add-ons. This is particularly useful for managing other people’s computers.
You can also change the default browser, homepage, and search engine.
Soluto watches for crashes and unresponsive applications and attempts to measure a user’s frustration level. From the Soluto website, you can see what a user is being frustrated by and address issues before you get a tech support call about them.
Soluto will show you crashes that have occurred recently and also suggest fixes for them.
Applications, Security & Hardware
Soluto can quickly install and update commonly used applications. When you install or update an app, it happens in the background without disturbing the user of the computer
You can also check the computer’s security settings. With Soluto, you can verify that firewall, antivirus, and software updates are working properly. If no antivirus is present, you can quickly install an antivirus, such as Microsoft Security Essentials.
Soluto also displays the hardware in the system and informs you of any problems. For example, Soluto tells you how worn a laptop’s battery is, so you’ll know when it’s time to replace the battery.
Soluto is more than just a slick interface – it actually makes common tech support tasks easier and faster. It’s possible to do all of this remotely already, but that involves remote desktop solutions, which just take longer.
Chris Hoffman is a technology writer and all-around computer geek. He's as at home using the Linux terminal as he is digging into the Windows registry. Connect with him on Google+.
- Published 03/21/12