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by John R. McKnight

A pal of mine that I've known for 40 years since our travail in the 50's at dear old Carter-Lawrence Elementary in Nashville, Tennessee gave me a copy of Nuts & Bolts. He didn't like it. (He always did have suspect judgement that's why I always won when we played marbles.) Nuts & Bolts is great! It's especially great for a novice. And I've used them all (almost) including First Aid, Norton, Guard Dog, and Clean Sweep. I'm a utility junkie you see. 

 Nuts & Bolts, the Swiss Army knife (with kitchen sink) of all utilities, by Helix Software does it all. The program sells for $49.95 suggested retail at leading San Antonio software retailers and, of course, less if they give an Alamo PC discount. 

 Did you delete a file by mistake? The deleted file recovery feature will retrieve it for you. Do you need to test that hard disk? Repair it? Defragment it? How about cleaning up your files? Find duplicate files, orphaned files, and unnecessary files in the Win 95 Registry. A Bomb Shelter module intercepts most common crashes. No more Windows lock-ups. You can also create a compact rescue-disk tool to help you recover from more advanced operating system failures. 

 And there are yet more tools that let you fine tune your Win 95 desktop system settings. Wait there's more. How about secure file encryption and deletion capabilities? How about a simple ZIP archive manager? How about a virus checker from Cheyenne Software. 

 The menus that tie all this together are gorgeous. Are you a novice? Don't fret, you'll love Nuts & Bolts. Are you an expert? Nuts & Bolts has your number too. Does Nuts & Bolts have any warts. Well, yes. For me, I didn't like the Win Gauge and Launch Pad boxes that stay on top of every image and take up so much room on the desktop. However, they can be turned off. 

 If you can't find a pal to give you a free copy of Nut's & Bolts like I did you can still get a 30-day evaluation copy direct from Helix's web address ( While you're on their website check out the comparison charts depicting similar utilities and all the awards and accolades Nuts & Bolts has received from the Industry. 

 What about First Aid and Norton? In fact, I've removed them from my system. I don't need them with Nuts & Bolts. Download the trial copy and then you can see for yourself if what I am saying isn't true. And if it ain't so then in the immortal words of Blues great Little Willie John: "Grits ain't groceries, eggs ain't poultry and Mona Lisa was a man." 

 On second thought, my pal does have good judgment. Very good judgment in fact. He sponsored me into Alamo PC during the Member-Get-A-Member program. However, he still can't play marbles and he doesn't know a good utility when he sees it. Nuts & Bolts walks the dog and it's the cat's meow. 

 Randy, is a former Air Force Communications Specialist on retainer after 21 years of active duty who now drives for Hertz. He will get you to the church on time and to the plane too. He commandeered his daughter's new computer last year and now he is a real gone computer cat and web surfer and recent Alamo PC member.