Our Weekly Utilities Update report is a list of all the updates for many Mac utilities that have been released in the past week. While utilities can be any tool that helps you perform a routine task (including image manipulation and synchronization), our focus in this column is to bring you those tools that help in troubleshooting Mac hardware and software problems. This week there were updates for file management and maintenance utilities, as well as search alternatives to Spotlight and some hardware management utilities.
This week the file management utilities HDCleanup and WhatSize have been updated. HDCleanup is a small program that allows you to scan for and remove duplicate files, unused settings files, caches, logs, and other miscellaneous files that have been scattered around your drive. Similarly, WhatSize can help you find and catalogue files, but does so by focusing on the size of files on the drive. It's main use is to see what files and folders are using the most space on disk, and has been updated to fix problems with the "Find Duplicates" feature.
In maintenance utilities, Yasu has been updated to support the cleaning of Google Chrome's temporary files, and fixes a problem with failure of home permissions resetting. MacKeeper is an all-in-one maintenance and configuration utility for OS X, that has been updated to include more anti-theft options for portable computers, and update the features that remove unused languages, and binary code from universal applications. Lastly, the popular application "Cocktail" (Snow Leopard edition) has been updated to add new convenience settings and options such as showing full folder paths in the window title.
While most utilities are software-based for cleaning and maintaining the operating system, a few help with local hardware such as network interface management, hard drives, and graphics. This week, AirRadar is a wifi hot-spot locator utility that has been updated to fix a small bug where hot spots could be shown as being out of range. The utility "Graphiccelerator" is an interface through which you can control the clock settings for ATI and Nvidia GPUs included in many Macs. While this utility may be useful for some folks, keep in mind that tampering with the hardware clock rates of GPUs and video components may break them, or wear them out fast and lead to odd behavior such as crashes and visual artifacts.
The full list of updated utilities this week are the following:
- HDCleanUp 1.8.2 ($10.00) - Clean up the clutter on your hard disk.
- Compressor Repair 1.3 (Free!) - Finds problems that prevent Apple Compressor from working.
- WhatSize 4.9.3 ($14.95) - Measure sizes of your files and folders.
- Yasu 2.6.7 ($3.50) - Run system shell scripts to perform maintenance routines and clear cache files.
- MacKeeper 0.8.7 ($39.95) - Set of clean-up utilities, standalone tools, online services.
- Cocktail 4.7.2 ($14.95) - (Snow Leopard Edition) General purpose system modify/repair utility.
- Graphiccelerator 1.3.4 (Free!) - overclock user-installable ATI & nVidia graphics cards
- FoxTrot Personal Search 2.6 ($29.00) - Advanced find-by-content for your personal data.
- AirRadar 1.2.8 ($19.95) - Advanced wireless network scanner/stumbler.