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How to Easily Optimize & Manage Multiple Computers with Soluto

soluto header

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.

Getting Started

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.

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This web page is your control panel, where you can manage all the computers you’ve installed Soluto on.

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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.

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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.

Startup Programs

After installing Soluto, you’ll want to restart your computer so you can start managing startup programs.

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When your computer starts, Soluto watches the programs that start and analyzes their impact on your boot time.

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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.sshot-12

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.sshot-13

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.

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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.

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The Soluto website has a slightly different interface with the same information.

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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.

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You can also change the default browser, homepage, and search engine.

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Crashes

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.

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Soluto will show you crashes that have occurred recently and also suggest fixes for them.

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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

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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.

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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.

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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

Comments (24)

  1. Noel

    This application looked promising so I used it for a while but essentially it has no solution for any of my application crashes, so it became just a bloatware. I removed it. Good concept but need more work.

  2. Javier

    I’m with you Noel, and it got featured a lot of times in HTG almost looks like an ad

  3. IrishIT

    I have test driven Soluto before this update came out and i was very impressed with what it provided! the only downside I saw was that there was no server support *crosses fingers for future* and, stop me if I am wrong, but I do not remember seeing x64 support either.

  4. RobAlex

    From the write-up above, Soluto sounds really great. If Noel is correct, the write-up does sound like an ad and HTG should do a lot more testing before they endorse a product. It’s especially frustrating in the field of utilities of this type; most of them don’t do a tenth of what they promise and are indeed a waste of time and space. To be fair, I have not tried this one but I’ve been misled so often I am reluctant. But maybe I should give it a chance and then post my results. So here goes. I’ll let you all know my experience with the program.

  5. Torben

    Another +1 to Noel’s comment. This is a poorly veiled advertisement. I tried Soluto for some months on several computers but it didn’t actually help me.

    Soluto can’t really do anything I could not do anyway, and the “benefit” is outweighed by the drawbacks.

    Also, the idea of removing programs from boot and have them start some minutes later … doesn’t make any sense in practice. I *want* Skype to start along with Windows, but Soluto’s “delay” often prevented the start until I actually needed it. If that’s what I wanted, I could just remove Skype from boot and start it myself.

    Finally, the very weird, non-standard user interface is a very dumb design decision.

  6. Jon

    +1 Noel. While the software shows you what slows down the start up of a computer, Soluto itself takes up lots of time to load. In any case, Start>Run>msconfig>start up suffice the need for that kind of software.

    Crashing?

    THIS

    IS

    WINDOOOOOWS

    …offcourse :D (just make sure you don’t install stuff you don’t need > ninite[dot]com has the essentials, anything else is a bloatware)

  7. James O'Brien

    I was considering trying this app out, but after reading the user comments, I’m going to pass on it. But I do appreciate the user responses. Thanks all!

    James O’Brien
    http://www.obrienpc.net

  8. dave

    Soluto in the past as been just bloatware.I do not see the need for such an application,it just slows the boot more than it solves any issues.its sad that we have to listen to such claims so often.

  9. Brian

    I really like the concept, but I’ve never found the execution of the program that great. I tried it for a while but it never seemed to help with the other test computer I had it installed on. If they improve on this, I would definitely try it again. It would help me tremendously with the frustration levels of the folks using the computers here at the office (plus I wouldn’t have to constantly go to their computers to check the updates). If anyone knows of a similar program that works now, please let me know.

  10. The Geek

    Guys,

    Soluto is a FREE product that will always be free.

    When we write about Linux, do you accuse us of advertising for open source?
    When we write about Google, Firefox, TrueCrypt, Facebook, Twitter, Windows 8, VLC, Chrome, Gmail, Ubuntu, etc, do you accuse us of advertising for them?

    Enough.

  11. Brian

    I can understand that maybe HTG needs to do more testing, (to be fair, I haven’t tested this program myself) but I don’t see anything I can’t do myself with logmein for my clients. However, it is free; so I don’t see this as an ad.

    That being said, I would like to see a program where I could decide to install updates on all the computers in my list all at once, do regular maintenance to all the computers in my list at once, etc. and I can see this program growing into something like that. Currently, I have a package for my clients where they pay me a monthly fee, and I decide what program/OS updates are installed based on extensive evaluation, and I also do regular maintenance all remotely using logmein. It’s extremely time consuming to do this every one of my clients who opts into this service, so a program like I described would be very nice. :)

  12. Neil

    +1 to Jon
    Ninite is the best thing to come out since sliced bread. Absolutely flawless!
    I even emailed the ninite guy to say thanks and he responded with his personal email with gratitude.
    Great company

  13. keltari

    Soluto is garbage.

    It causes more problems than it fixes. Ive had so many people complain that application and windows stop working correctly and then I see Soluto on their machines. First thing I do is uninstall Soluto and… Viola! Everything works fine again.

    It speeds things up by taking out programs and services that it believes people dont use. However, they actually do use them. Id rather have the machine boot slower than run programs slower. I dont reboot very often.

    And I have yet to see Soluto analyze a crash in any useful manner, or at all…

  14. David

    I Can do alot better this program like alot of you who comment, but there is alot people who cant or doesnt know, so not good for someone who knows what there doing, but good for people who know little about computers…

  15. David

    BTW just to add more, if you do install it to see how long it take programs to load, i would uninstall it after you made changes,

  16. Ryan

    Looking through the posts there are a few that say this isn’t anything i can’t already do. Very true and i would agree team viewer is my weapon of choice against the hordes of family looking for free support. However i’ve just installed this on a family members laptop and the biggest thing that struck me was “i can update/check whatever i need without having to contact them” I’m sure all of you love every one of your family members as do i, but the option of not having to talk to them every time they need an update or have an issue appeals to me. So i’ll give this a try for a while and see how it goes.

    Thanks HTG another great article.

    Ryan

  17. Chris Hoffman

    @Everyone

    I’ve been using Soluto for a few weeks myself. I was really impressed with it. If this seems like an ad, it’s because I found the program really cool. I’ve been using it for weeks on several different computers.

    Seriously — I didn’t get paid anything by Soluto. I found the program myself and came up with the idea for the post on my own.

    Soluto may not help much with crashes — I’m not sure, I don’t get many crashes. But the other features seem solid. I haven’t noticed it slowing much down.

    And yeah, as I said in the post, you could totally do all this with a remote desktop solution. But this seems faster, to me. It also works if the other computer is offline or just powered off.

  18. pbug56

    I removed it from my PC’s; it crashed even more then IE and Chrome and Firefox do, it hogged lots of ram, it slowed down the boot up considerably; it seemed to me more like a semi benign virus then a utility. Just one more way to mess up a PC.

  19. Bryan

    I used it back in beta and I hated it. Really slowed down my computer so I uninstalled it.

  20. Rick

    +1 Geek, I got your back. Thanks for introducing us to products so that we can test and read reviews (and comments) and make up our own mind as to whether or not it’s beneficial to us. There’s hundreds of ways to do every task on the computer, what way we decide to use is a personal preference.

    HTG doesn’t “thinly veil” advertising, they’re very up front. Have you downloaded that free audio book or bought turbo tax yet? ;)

    PS. I don’t like Soluto either.

  21. Daniel

    I have yet to try Soluto but it seems very promising. HTG has always done a great job of presenting programs (open-source, beta, licensed) from a wide perspective. If some of you do not like a particular program or the way it was presented in a post, you probably need to lighten up. Plus I don’t ever recall Mr. Hoffman being a sellout and pandering to any sort of developer, then blatantly posting it for us to take shots…..

  22. Chris Hoffman

    @Daniel

    Thanks a lot. I’ve been playing with Soluto and liked it — I respect that maybe How-To Geek’s crowd doesn’t like it, or sees more problems with it. No skin off my back either way — I’m not associated with Soluto and I don’t really care if people use Soluto or not.

  23. coolkid3245

    actually my Windows crashed after installing Soluto D:

  24. roee

    Hi all,

    It’s clear from the comments here that many of you are very unhappy with Soluto and this really bums me out. It sounds like many of you are referring to our old client application, in which case I recommend you try out our new web service which allows you to do much more.

    You’re all tech savvy – it’s obvious you know your stuff. But I’m sure you know other people who are not as “good with computers” as you, some of them may even call you from time to time for “family tech support” – you can use Soluto to help them out (as Ryan mentioned).

    We’re a bunch of software engineers trying to build stuff that’ll bring value to techies, for free. I know we aren’t perfect, but we try…

    To answer some of the specific comments:

    IrishIT: We don’t support Windows Server at this stage, but we certainly do support 64-bit machines and OSs.

    Javier, RobAlex & Torben: Soluto has never paid for advertising on How-To Geek, as The Geek himself mentioned in his comment.

    And to all those who commented in favor of our stuff: thanks :)

    I’m here for questions, feedback and ideas on how we can improve – feel free to contact me directly: roee@soluto.com.

    Roee
    Soluto

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