Tech Chic: CCleaner

Today’s amazing free download for windows is CCleaner by Piriform.

Continuing on with the “make your computer run happier” theme CCleaner is a three in one fixer-upper.

It is available for download at This program has three great attributes, it cleans out old files, similar to the Disk Cleaner already on your windows machine, it uninstalls programs much faster and easier than the Windows uninstaller and it clears out your registry. Head over to To download this free program, then follow the install wizard through the installation.

The first part of CCleaner is the cleaner portion. This part of the program will show up on your screen when you open the program. You will see a listing of browsers and other headings like “System” under the first “Windows” tab. This part of the program deletes the cashes from all your browsers and most of the temporary files from your other programs. I like to keep my browser history so I uncheck that box.

If you are looking at some nasty stuff or share a computer with someone else and don’t want them to run into your search for “how to kill a baby seal” then I would advise running this cleaner often. The second tab up near the top reads “Applications” under it you can remove temporary files from all the major applications on your computer. Once you have all the appropriate boxes checked just hit run cleaner. It will do its thing and then tell you the amount of space that it has opened up by deleting those files.

The uninstaller is the second functionality of this program. You can access it by clicking on the large tab on the left that reads “tools”. It is a good rule to delete the random programs that may be hanging on, a game that you only played once, a reader that you used to open one thing but it now has an icon camping out in your quick launch bar. Even if you have a lot of empty space on your drive, it is still a good idea to get rid of some of these programs. Be careful not to get rid of any of your drivers or software necessary to run your system. If you do not know what something is listed by the uninstaller then Google it or leave it alone.

In the tools tab and right under the button that says “Uninstall” is one that says “Startup”. This part of the program allows you to stop programs from waking up right when you turn on your computer. This allows your computer to load faster and lets you get down to business easier. If you see a program in this list that you do not want to load right away like Yahoo messenger or some update manager that keeps bothering you, then click on it and at the bottom click disable.

Advanced: The third button “System Restore” is only for use if you want to create a back up of your computer’s current state. This is useful in case a virus gets on your computer, if you are still able to boot up, in theory you could open this program and load that earlier snapshot of your computer and the virus would be gone. Along with all the files you may have worked on in between the time you made the restore and when you actually restored it.

The last function of this program is the registry cleaner. This can be accessed by clicking the large tab on the left that says “Registry”. This helps clean out some of the clutter behind the subconscious workings of your computer. Registry Cleaners are software utilities that attempt to remove configuration data from the Windows Registry that is no longer in use or that is unwanted on the system. Such data may include information left by software that has not been uninstalled completely from the computer, information that is no longer of use, or settings required for the operation of malware. A registry cleaner scans the registry, and attempts to pick out the unnecessary values in order to delete or repair them. It looks for things like invalid entries, missing file references or broken links within the registry and resolving them. There is some controversy over how helpful cleaning out the registry really is but it cannot hurt.

Click “Scan for Issues” a list will populate on your screen. Then click “Fix Selected Issues” this will open up a prompt (that you can disable in the “Options” tab over to the left click “Options”>”Advanced” then uncheck “Show prompt to back up registry issues”), just click “no”. Then it will go on to showing you each of the errors, if you have never done a registry clean this can be quite a list. Go ahead and click “Fix all Selected Issues” click “yes” and there you go, now you have ha shiny clean registry and a much happier computer.

Another neat thing this program does is at the very top where it says under that title it lists some of your computer’s specks. So if you ever needed to tell someone at tech services what you have or just wanted to know, there it is. This program should be run about every month. Note: running this program does not get rid of viruses or malware, it merely cleans up some of your computer.

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