The original PC Tools package was first developed as a suite of utilities for DOS, released for retail in 1986 for $39
With the introduction of version 4.0, the name was changed to PC Tools Deluxe, and the primary interface became a colorful graphical DOS shell (previously the DOS shell resembled PC BOSS and was monochrome.) By version 7.0 of the package in 1991 several Windows programs had been added to it.
Though the 7.0 version sold well, it was criticised in computer trade publications for being overly complicated and riddled with bugs. It was widely considered to have been rushed to publication, despite the objections of many of Central Point Software's employees. PC Tools Version 9.x for DOS was the last stable release.
In June 1994 Central Point was acquired by their top competitor Symantec who ultimately discontinued the product line. PC Tools was the main competitor to Norton Utilities, which Symantec had acquired in 1990.
Symantec now uses the PC Tools brand nameÃ¢â‚¬â€acquired from an Australian security vendor in 2008Ã¢â‚¬â€for low-cost antivirus and antispyware software.