One thing Microsoft can be counted on is propping up third-party software companies. After all, every time the company launches a new version of the Windows operating system an entire ecosystem of new apps begins popping up around the web. Windows 8 has already proven to be no different, especially with the plethora of options that have cropped up to give users access to that Start menu that many users seem to think that they just can’t live without.
Aside from the missing Windows 95 relic, Windows 8 has provided coders with the chance to design all new maintenance and utility apps and EnhanceMy8 is one of the latest to come along. The app comes with many of the usual tools included in any Windows maintenance utility, but it is geared towards the brand new OS.
First, you obviously need to download the app. The latest version, as of this writing, is 1.1.0 and it is free from SeriousBit. The download is relatively small — 12.8 MB so it won’t take you long to grab a copy or use up needed space on your hard drive.
When you launch the app you will be greeted with a number of options. There is a traditional menu bar across the top that contains choices for Information, Tools, Most Used Tweaks, System, Optimizations and Customizations. Clicking each of these will result in a menu bar directly below which displays related icons.
This provides you with a snapshot of all of the important data about your computer. You can see the operating system version, processor information, RAM, and a whole lot more.
For instance, there is a processor icon that gets pretty geeky with information and even graphs about the performance of each core in your CPU. There is detailed memory data, display information and hard drive information. This is really a paradise for the hardcore users — you know the type, those who like to build computers, overclock CPU’s and such. In fact, if you are reading this then you are probably one of us.
Now we start getting into what this app can do, as opposed to simply what it can tell you. Clicking the Tools menu item will bring up a brand new set of icons. Here you will find all of the processes and services that are running on your system.
But, like everything else in the menu there is more than just one or two simple options here. You can also view startup items and initiate maintenance processes like registry cleaner and disk cleaner and a disk defragmenter.
Most Used Tweaks
This option contains Performance, Security and Network tweaks, but it’s for those who have purchased the Pro version. Free users can not access these options, but don’t fret because, while it provides some nice added functionality, it isn’t necessary to controlling and optimizing your system.
From here users can create a system restore point. That is extremely important and should always be done before making any changes to your system — even installing an app. Do not ever forget to do this before making important changes to your computer.
You will also be able to access system tools, which includes many apps installed on your PC, such as task manager, device manager, the command prompt and even such things as the calculator and even Microsoft Paint.
This isn’t a section that many users will likely pay attention to. That’s a shame because there are a couple of essential tweaks to be found here. For instance, you can set the time, in milseconds, for which an app can remain hung up before being automatically closed by Windows. You can expand or shrink the cache. You can even tweak visual effects. Sure, it’s all pretty geeky, but it allows for much better system control.
The final option in the top menu is Customizations. Here you will find three options, but two are locked for Pro users only, so we will ignore them because we want to focus on what most users will encounter.
For that there is Taskbar and Setup. One of the handiest features found here is the ability to “auto login” to Windows. Depending on your situation this could be a bad idea, but with a desktop PC in a home environment it isn’t much of a security risk. You can enter your user name and password right here and the app will take care of the rest.
You can also enable and disable features, hide options and a whole lot more from this menu. Get the Pro version and you will also have access to icons, folders and the context menu.
If you are looking for a maintenance utility to handle customizing and personalizing Windows 8 then this may be what you are looking for. It will give you very minute control over your system and let you get pretty geeky with many of your system settings.
However, while the app is free, you don’t get every option in the free version. For that you will need to pony up the $29.95 for a Pro license. That may be a bit steep, but for hardcore computer folks it may be worth the money. For the rest of you, probably not so much.
The free version will suffice and still provide pretty good control over any Windows 8 computer. Of course, this app is in a crowded field of new utilities that are out, or coming out, for the new Microsoft operating system.