CCleaner Is A Superb Free Utility

I use CCleaner all the time. Windows, IE and Firefox are hungry disk space critters and take up a heap of hard drive space if not kept in check.

Being a power user I rack up a lot of junk very quickly in the form of cookies, temporary files and other obscure stuff that Windows thins we have to keep.

It is not uncommon for CCleaner to find 1000Mb+ of junk on my system and can delete it within seconds giving me back a more responsive machine. The registry cleaner is great, and makes backups in case something goes wrong, and I used to use it all the time until I purchased a Pro registry cleaner.

The following is taken directly from the CCleaner website as I can’t add anything to the instructions and CCleaner does deserve having a mention, a thank you and a back link for a great little utility program.

CCleaner is a freeware system optimization, privacy and cleaning tool. It removes unused files from your system – allowing Windows to run faster and freeing up valuable hard disk space. It also cleans traces of your online activities such as your Internet history. Additionally it contains a fully featured registry cleaner. But the best part is that it’s fast (normally taking less than a second to run) and contains NO Spyware or
Adware! 🙂

Once you have installed CCleaner you can open the application by:

Double-clicking the desktop icon
Clicking on Start -> Programs -> CCleaner
Right-clicking on the Recycle Bin and selecting “Open CCleaner…”

There is also a “Run CCleaner” option on the Recycle Bin menu, which will clean your system without any prompts.

But we recommend you don’t do this until you have familiarized yourself with the program and its options.

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CCleaner has four main sections which can be selected using the 4 icons in the left-hand navigation panel.

(The Cleaner section is selected by default.)

Cleaner
This is the main feature of the program, which will allow you to optimize your system, by removing unused and temporary files. It also protects your personal privacy by removing traces of the websites you have visited and the files you have opened.

(It’s important to point out that it does this without removing any files you’ll still need!)

Registry

This is a more advanced feature which analyses your computers registry (where windows system settings are stored) and fixes any problems and inconsistencies that exist.

Tools
This section allows you to manage installed programs and applications that run when you turn on your computer.

Options
The Options section handles a wide array of preferences for how CCleaner runs.

Cleaner Settings

The Cleaner Settings are the list of checkboxes next to the navigation buttons and are present when you are in the Cleaner mode.

By checking and unchecking options you can choose to include or exclude items from the cleaning process.

For example, if you uncheck the Cookies option then no Internet Explorer cookies will be removed. (You also have the choice to keep specific cookies in the Options section.)

You will notice a second tab at the top labelled Applications.

This displays a list of additional cleaning options for third-party applications you have installed.

This list will change automatically to include new programs.

Running the Cleaner

To actually run the cleaner and remove the files, it’s a simple case of just clicking the Run Cleaner button.

If you’d like to see what is going to be removed first (before deleting the files) then click on the Analyze button.

The output window above the buttons will display a log of the analysis or cleaning process.

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Issues

The Issues section will help you find errors and old entries in the system registry.

Whilst this will make sense to an advanced user, to the beginner a lot of the options will mean nothing.

That is why CCleaner includes a complete backup option, so in the rare event you remove something that you later need – you will have a backup to restore from.

To use, simply press the “Scan for Issues” button and once completed press the “Fix Selected Issues” button.

You will be prompted to backup and helped throughout the process.

Tools

The Tools section contains two features for advanced users:

Uninstall

Whilst windows includes a Control Panel program to remove installed programs.

There’s no feature to edit or remove these entries.

Startup
Most computers have many programs that run when Windows starts.

It’s often very difficult to remove these and prevent that from happening.

This tool list the programs and allows you to remove them.

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Options

The Options section will allow you to customize the way CCleaner runs.

For example there’s an option to run the cleaner at computer startup, so you can automatically keep your computer clean without having to worry about it.

So thank you to the folks over at CCleaner for making their program freely available. Download CCleaner

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