There is no secret that working on the computer, no matter its outstanding initial performance, will eventually bring it to a slower functioning. Also, web browsing and installing applications will generate tons of files needed for some process, but never wiped after they are no longer needed. They'll hang in there until you decide to take some action against them the moment you find yourself in need of free space or simply settle to clean the system of data that serves no useful purpose.
The need of more space, especially on the system drive, often requires going into the temporary files (Windows and web browser) manually and eliminating files you no longer need. An automatic approach to this task has already been created and there are plenty of apps perfectly fit for the job.
KC Software's KCleaner is not a snazzy-looking piece of software and, as its name hints, it is designed to sweep temporary files off your computer, leaving it a little lighter of unwanted data. The software is absolutely free of charge, so there are no limitations to hinder its activity.
Once launched, no flashy interface awaits, as the software was built having functionality in mind rather than visual appeal. The purpose of the application is stipulated in the main window so that the user knows from the beginning the effect it is going to have on the system.
The main screen of the software provides you with two cleaning options: manual and automatic. Both of them have the same end, but the difference consists in how they reach the goal. Manual approach implies cleaning the system of temporary, unwanted files every time you want, and involves analyzing and then proceeding to the actual elimination of the data. If you choose automatic mode, the application will accomplish the cleaning without your input, with a user-specified frequency (it comes with a basic form of scheduler).
Regardless of the method chosen to erase the temporary data, the program brings two interface modes, one that shows the data detected or which couldn't be eliminated, and one that keeps everything hidden from view. Until your confidence in KCleaner grows, I recommend you look at all the files it deletes before letting it do its thing.
As the interface is that simple, setting KCleaner couldn't be too difficult a task. The set of options includes schedule the software to load at startup, clean the system once and then close, make it minimize to system tray, log all deletions. More powerful options permit you to set the cleaning frequency for automatic mode (it can be set to start as often as every hour) or securely delete the files by scrambling the names before erasure. Moreover, these can be trimmed before being sent into oblivion.
An additional function of the software is the possibility to securely erase the temporary data. The three possibilities at your disposal are Standard (which is the regular delete method), 1 pass random (performs a single overwrite with random data) and 3 pass DoD 5220.22-M (performs three overwrites and is the secure deletion standard of the US Department of Defense).
The most important aspect of the application is the selection of the files to be erased. The list provided includes data created by various popular applications not required for their proper functioning at all times. Cache folders, logs, temporary files resulting from installing a software, cookies, and even the contents of the Recycle Bin can be swiftly eliminated during KCleaner's cleaning session.
All the file types eliminated are viewable in the Settings panel of the software and include installer cache from Apple, Java, ATI drivers, Skype, web browsers (Firefox, Opera and Google Chrome), other applications (Adobe Reader, QuickTime, Google Earth, Songbird, MSN Messenger). Log files for Dr. Watson (Windows XP), Windows OS, or DynDNS are also eliminated.
The complete list is available in the Settings windows of the software and you can choose which data to be erased. For easy management, there is a “Check All” button for selecting all the options; on the downside, its antonym is not present.
KCleaner can be used in 21 languages. The translation takes effect as soon as you select the language, so no restart is needed.
Though it comes with its set of mischiefs, the application does a great job eliminating the data it’s supposed to. Also, the scheduler is a useful function as it allows you to program the cleaning of the selected areas at specific periods of time, thus diminishing the effort from your part. More flexibility would be delivered to the user if there was the possibility to add custom locations to be cleared of data. However, the app is designed to rid the system of routine files that remain on your computer after their purpose has been fulfilled and nothing more.The Good
The application provides no challenge when it comes to working with it. It brings a scheduler ready to spare you of the effort of clicking a few buttons and waiting for the analysis and cleaning to finish, taking all this to the background.
You can choose whether a file should be deleted or not and the secure erase options loses it for good, without the possibility of recovery.The Bad
There is no “Check None” button to de-select all the boxes in the Settings panel. Also, more flexibility would be injected by allowing the user to add his/her own location to be purged of data.
The look, although not primordial in such an application, requires improvement. It would be nice if the data that could not be deleted because it is in use would be marked in some way, or the user warned of this fact (for the temporary files).The Truth
Easy to use, KCleaner has been planned to offer you an automatic way to eliminate temporary files, cache and other data with expired purpose on your system. And this is exactly what it does. It is not the best looking application on the market, but the plain look hides a responsible engine that makes no mistakes when it comes to erasing data.
Even though KCleaner can be much better, at the current version, it does a pretty good job. Hopefully, it will receive all the needed attention from the developer in the future builds.Here are some snapshots of the application in action: