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4.6

Starting at $34.95
/ per year
CleanMyMac is designed to find unnecessary clutter in your devices and remove it quickly. Created by MacPaw, the software is designed to replace multiple optimization tools dedicated to Mac devices and combines them on a single platform. From monitoring system performance, removing malware, and trac…  Learn more
One of the preferred Mac cleaner projects in the market today notable for being easy to use, Nektony App cleaner lets users track applications they don’t need on their devices and safely remove them. Standard features include duplicate file locating and cleanup, disk space analysis, application mana…  Learn more

4.5

Starting at $0
/
CCleaner is a solution that allows users to clean, speed up and free up space on business endpoints. Scheduled cleaning means PCs run at optimum performance without disrupting internal processes and maintaining efficiency within teams. It is known as one of the more reliable options today as it help…  Learn more

Learn More About Disk Cleanup Software

Disk Cleanup Software Buyer’s Guide

What Is Disk Cleanup Software?

Disk cleanup software is a maintenance solution originally developed by Microsoft for the Windows operating system. 
The tool improves computer performance by removing damaged, fragmented, or unnecessary files from the system, which may slow down processing times. Typically, disk cleanup software targets “temporary files,” such as those located in the Recycle Bin. 
However, the software can also compress untouched files, remove cached webpages, and eliminate rejected items that aren’t necessary for computer function. The utility will usually display all of the detected files which can be removed from the system, so users can decide what should be removed. 
Removing extra files reduces the amount of data cluttering up your operating system, and frees up available storage space for new technology. The solution is popular among business users in the IT space, as well as everyday consumers. To qualify as disk cleanup software, a solution must:

  • Clear cached files from temporary computer memory
  • Compress older files to allow for additional storage space
  • Remove files and damaged data stored in temporary folders

Why Use Disk Cleanup Software: Key Benefits to Consider

Computers can only operate according to the available space they have on the hard drive. When computers run slowly, and there’s limited space for new programs and files, this could be because your system is filled with unnecessary “junk” files. 
Various programs automatically generate temporary files in response to file creation, used as backups in case the program shuts down unexpectedly. Browsers also create temporary files for storing browsing history information and cookies. These temporary files aren’t always deleted when programs and browsers are closed, which influences processing power. 
The key benefits of disk cleanup software include:

  • Decrease Hard Drive Bloat: The most prominent benefit of disk cleanup software is the ability to recover hard drive space. Disc cleanup can recover hundreds of megabytes of storage space, and provide users with more RAM to operate. 
  • Create Necessary Backups: Removing and examining the junk files and temporary files on a computer with disk cleanup allow users to determine which components they want to preserve. This allows for more refined backups to protect system operation.
  • Remove File Duplicates: Junk files on a system can come in the form of unintended duplicate files from programs that may not be working properly. These duplicate files take up unnecessary space and may slow down the performance of the computer.
  • Scan For Viruses and Malware: Many disk cleanup software solutions can also help to track down particularly harmful files. They also allow for the removal of files that may disrupt the performance of your virus scanning software, so you can protect your computer. 
  • Improve Overall Computer Performance: Temporary, duplicate, and unused files force a computer to work harder than necessary when performing basic processes. Removing these files gives the computer system more capacity to operate at the correct pace. 

Who Uses Disk Cleanup Software

Disk cleanup software can be beneficial to anyone using a computer system. Every computer is subject to potentially unnecessary file storage from temporary and unused data. Compressing and removing unnecessary files improves the performance of the computer, saves time, and recovers hard-drive space. It can also help to ensure other programs on a computer operate smoothly. 
While disk cleanup software was initially created for Windows operating systems, software now exists for all major operating systems. Server admins can also leverage significant benefits from disk cleanup tools, as they allow for the maintenance of enhanced server performance for business requirements.  
Different Types of Disk Cleanup Software
There are various forms of disk cleanup software, intended for different purposes. Usually, the main forms of software available are defined by their usage. The options include:

  • Personal Computer Oriented: Disk cleanup software designed for personal computers is intended for everyday users. They handle the searching and management functionalities of a basic computer hard drive. These tools are available for most major operating systems. 
  • Server Oriented: A server-oriented disk cleanup software is intended specifically for server administrators and business users. These solutions focus on examining the files and data on server drives, and are typically focused on Linux and Windows servers.

Features of Disk Cleanup Software

The features of disk cleanup software can vary depending on where you access your chosen technology. The most common core features found in most solutions include:

  • Cleanup Target Selection: These utilities provide users with a list of discovered junk, duplicate, and damaged files on their system. The user can then choose which items they want to remove, and which they may need to keep for backup purposes. 
  • File Type Selection: The files you a user wants to remove from their operating system or server may not be located in the same place, but they can belong to a specific designation. File type selection in disk cleanup software allows users to select the files they want to target from a list of common options, for more focused cleaning.
  • Disk Defragmentation: Most disk cleanup software also comes with access to disk defragmentation. This tool can help to optimize where data is stored on a hard drive, optimizing the way your device accesses data. This allows for faster PC performance.
  • Post-Cleanup Reporting: Following a disk cleanup process, these utilities often generate reports outlining how much data was removed. This provides users with insights into which of their programs may be generating higher amounts of junk data. The technology can also provide advice on how often a disk cleanup system should be used.
  • Automated Recurring Cleanup: On high-performance computers, users and administrators can sometimes set disk cleanup tasks to run on an automated basis. This means the utility will operate automatically according to a specific timeline. 

Important Considerations When Choosing Disk Cleanup Software

There are various forms of disk cleanup software available, including those pre-built into popular operating systems. When choosing the right solution, most users will focus on:

  • Ease of Use: A simple and clear user interface ensures individuals accessing disk cleanup software don’t need extensive technical knowledge to improve system performance. Tools should be able to run almost automatically and provide in-depth insights into the data which is available to remove from the computer. Clear reports and insights can also assist users in making intelligent decisions about how to manage computer performance. 
  • Operating System Compatibility: Disk cleanup software is specifically designed to target specific hard drive technology or server technology for each operating system. The right technology should be compatible with your chosen operating system. Most options available cover popular OS selections such as Windows, Linux, and Mac. 
  • Depth of Features: Most disk cleanup tools come with the same core features, such as the ability to compress unused files, present useful post-cleanup reports, and disk defragmentation. However, some options can also include additional features, such as the ability to set automated recurring cleanup dates on an operating system.

Software Related To Disk Cleanup Software

Disk cleanup software is often connected to various other pieces of software, including disk defragmentation tools, virus scanning services, and performance-boosting software. The most common software related to disk cleanup tools include:

  • Operating Systems: The operating system used by an individual or company is an important factor in choosing which disk cleanup solution will work best. Many operating systems, including Windows, come with their own integrated utility for disk cleanup already installed within the system. Others are designed exclusively for specific servers. 
  • Hardware Monitoring Software: Commonly used by businesses, hardware monitoring solutions are a utility that can be used to keep track of the health and performance of hard drives and computer hardware. If the monitor detects issues with hard drive performance or RAM, this can prompt users to run a drive cleanup to enhance system outcomes. 

Disk Cleanup Software FAQs

How to run disk cleanup?

The method you use to run a disk cleanup process will depend on the software available to you. 
For Windows users, it’s easy to conduct a cleanup using the built-in utility within the operating system. In the search box of your taskbar, search for “disk cleanup” and select the relevant result. Select the drive on your computer you want to clean (usually the hard drive), and click “OK”. 
The system will run an automated check of all the files within your chosen drive, searching for “junk” content. You will be given a list of options to choose from when it comes to deleting or removing these files. You may also be able to choose which files to compress. 

What are temporary files in disk cleanup?

Temporary files are the files most commonly targeted by disk cleanup software. These assets are not necessary to the operation of your computer or programs. Temporary files can include duplicate files created as backups, and browser cache files taken from your internet browsing history. 
Temporary files can also include the documents and other data stored in your recycling bin, either when you delete something manually, or a file is rejected by the system. 

What to delete in disk cleanup?

Disk cleanup software often provides users with a list of available files to delete, which they can check or uncheck before hitting the “Ok” button. The files you can delete include:

  • Windows update: Older files from previous installations of your operating system
  • Downloaded program files: Activex controls and Java applets taken from the internet when you view certain pages online.
  • Temporary internet files: Web pages stored on your hard disk for rapid viewing. The personalized settings for your web pages are left intact when you remove these files.
  • Delivery optimization files: Files previously downloaded by your computer which may not be necessary for the current Delivery Optimization service.
  • Temporary files: All files stored temporarily by programs for backups and other purposes. 
  • Recycling bin files: Files from the recycling bin are items you have deleted from your computer. 
  • Thumbnails: Copies of pictures, videos, and documents, which are stored to load quickly when you open a thumbnail. 
  • Others: Other files may include windows upgrade log files, system error memory dump files, system queued windows error reporting files, and device driver packages
    You should not delete any Windows ESD or similar OS files which are necessary for running your PC, as this will reset your computer to its factory settings.
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