[Windows] KCleaner cleans junk files that CCleaner misses, has automatic scheduling support

KCleaner Main UiIn my personal opinion, CCleaner is one of the best system cleaning tools available. Of course, there are tons of alternatives and I’m sure a lot of you dotTechies have an app that you prefer. The point here is that whenever I try a new cleaning tool I compare it to CCleaner, because it’s my favorite. KCleaner is similar to CCleaner, in that it analyzes and removes unnecessary files from your computer, but it actually finds junk that CCleaner tends to miss.

What is it and what does it do

Main Functionality

KCleaner gets rid of junk files that CCleaner does not. Because of that, it’s actually a good idea to use the two applications together to keep your system running like new. There’s an extensive list of items that KCleaner will flush from your system, but most of them are residual files left to rot by various programs and applications.

Pros

  • KCleaner SettingsQuick and effective junk cleaner (targets various residual, cache, and temp files — see screenshot to the right for more details)
  • Automatic scheduling mode, can customize clean interval in hours (up to a max of 24 hours)
  • Clearly displays how many files were found, and how much space will be cleaned
  • Support for a wide range of languages
  • Advanced options available like start with windows, minimize to system tray and more
  • You can designate a much more secure deletion process (one pass random or 3 pass DoD)
  • All cleaning logs are optionally stored in a text file (can be cleared at any time)
  • Portable and lightweight (only uses about 3,500KB RAM while running in the background)

Cons

  • No difference between “expert mode” and “show files” mode, at least not from what I can tell
  • UI is not very attractive (but that’s a minor detail)
  • Must be run with admin access or the application cannot function properly
  • Is more of a junk file cleaner than a privacy cleaner… so don’t use it as a privacy cleaner
  • 2013-04-27_130036Comes bundled with a lot of bloatware, including Relevant Knowledge, during installation (if you use installer version) — be sure to uncheck boxes/decline/cancel during installation to avoid it (you may be prompted with license agreements for all this crapware — be very careful and pay attention during installation)
    • Note: You can download the portable version or the ‘Lite’ installer version to avoid all this crapware

Discussion

KCleaner is quick, responsive and very easy to use. The interface is nothing fancy, but you won’t get lost while using the program either. For the purpose of this review, I’ll be covering the portable version of KCleaner.

KCleaner Automatic modeThe first thing I’d like to mention is that if you decide to use KCleaner, you should always run it with administrative access. If you try to run the application without allowing it admin rights, you’ll run into some problems, namely the app won’t be able to edit files on your computer thus ruining its usefulness. If you don’t already know, you can run the program with elevated access by right clicking on the main icon and selecting “run as administrator” from the context menu. The Windows UAC prompt will appear, and you just have to agree to give the application access (click yes in the dialogue window).

KCleaner Expert ModeThere are three buttons right when the program starts up, analyze, clean and start. We’ll get to the start button in a little bit. The analyze and clean buttons work just as you’d expect- one analyzes your system and identifies files to remove while the other cleans discovered files. It’s all pretty straightforward.

The start button will run through the entire process automatically, meaning you can click once and the program will analyze your system and remove the junk all in one go. In the application settings you can designate a specific interval, and the program will automatically run after the specified time has passed. For example, if you set the interval to 4 hours in the settings menu, then KCleaner will analyze and clean your system every four hours.

There are two modes for the application, standard and expert. Expert is nothing different, except that it basically displays a list of all the junk files discovered on your computer. I found no difference between the expert mode and the “show files” option, they both show the same files and there are no new menus added in expert mode.

In the application settings you’ll find most of the usual stuff. You can change the display language for the application, tell it to load the software with Windows, minimize to the system tray, and more. You can also edit the list of files that the system looks for and cleans by default.

On my first scan, even right after running CCleaner, KCleaner still identified and removed over 400MB of junk from my system. Granted, I run vanilla CCleaner with no extensions, such as how you can add support to CCleaner for hundreds of programs with CCEnhancer, so you may or may not experience the same results as me if you extend your CCleaner. However, finding 400MB of junk that CCleaner missed is pretty impressive, especially since I had no clue that much garbage was cluttering up my system in the first place.

Conclusion and download link

KCleaner is not an alternative to cleaning software like CCleaner, but is instead more of a companion. Don’t take that to mean they are two parts of the same program, because they aren’t — they are two separate programs. I mean that in terms of junk stored on your computer, what one application misses, the other will catch (with some overlap between the two). KCleaner mainly handles any residual files and cache content leftover from various software packages, while CCleaner mainly handles registry items, temporary files, and other privacy related items like history and cache of browsers. If you’re looking to clear a little extra space on your hard drive by removing junk files you didn’t know you had, then KCleaner does the job splendidly. Check it out.

Price: Free

Version reviewed: 1.2.3.42

Supported OS: Windows (XP, Vista, Seven)

Download size: 676KB (portable), 1.82MB (installer)

VirusTotal malware scan results: 0/46 (portable), 1/46 (installer), 1/45 (Lite installer)

Is it portable? Yes

KCleaner homepage

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36 comments

  1. Alex

    The users here are supposed to be computer savvy? On the kcleaner webpage they clearly state which download versions contain sponsor software and which do not. Yet all these people still chose to download the versions with sponsor software?

    I’m trying to find a review on the software, NOT the sponsor software that you people are choosing to download and install. Really unbelievable.

  2. Claes Lundqvist

    [@Ed]

    I totally agree! This is just junk and virus, malware. Maybe it cleans up a bit but it puts more shit than ever on yoyr hard drive. It is sad that this trojan shit is recommended here. Just unbelievable …

  3. Ashraf
    Mr. Boss

    [@Irv Spalten] You are right. Originally we have a blurb warning of crapware that comes bundled, which is a bit less than what we have now. We didn’t anticipate so many people would have issues with them and updated the article after you’ll provided feedback. Sorry about that.

    [@Ed] >>The fact of the matter is that your artcle says absolutely nothing whatsoever about the software dropping trojans and/or malware on ones system.

    Wrong. From the getgo we clearly stated the installer version comes bundled with crapware. Sure we didn’t have as much detail as we have know (our mistake) but that doesn’t mean we didn’t warn you.

    That said, to everyone their own. I’m sad to see you go but I can’t control how you feel. We made a mistake, we fixed it. It happens. If that causes you to leave, then so be it — nothing I can do.

  4. Ed

    It’s not about adjusting your article, it’s not about “bolding” words out, it’s about CLARITY, it’s about COMPLETE honesty, it’s about COMPLETE testting of ALL versions of the software..

    The fact of the matter is that your artcle says absolutely nothing whatsoever about the software dropping trojans and/or malware on ones system.
    I really do not care if your artcle was geared more towards the portable version, if your going to write an article it really should be about ALL availible versions, and when you run a Virus total it needs to be ran on ALL availible versions of the software.
    Some like to use portable versions of software and some don’t and the ones that don’t like to use portable versions kinda got screwed if their antivirus caught it and the ones where there antivirus did not catch it ARE screwed.
    I totally lost respect for Dottech and it’s staff because of the fact that you would actually put your readers at risk and offer sh!tware like this, I will no longer trust your judgement.
    It’s not like I did not read the article in full, I did, it says absolutely NOTHING about malware or trojans on install or uninstall.I really don’t care how you think you worded it, If there is any risk WHATSOEVER to the user, it needs to be made CLEAR as to EXACTLY what is going to happen should you download this software and you didn’t.
    I can deal with missing a check mark and having a toolbar installed or something like that but out and out infecting ones system without warning is totally uncalled for.
    The fact that you would even consider doing a review on this piece of crap makes me sick, there is no telling how many users downloaded the .exe with sh!t antivirus programs that are now running their systems with malware and trojans loaded on them, I hope that makes you happy.

  5. Irv Spalten

    [@jipy]

    I think you are responding late here. Original text did NOT have this:

    =======
    Comes bundled with a lot of bloatware, including Relevant Knowledge, during installation (if you use installer version) — be sure to uncheck boxes/decline/cancel during installation to avoid it (you may be prompted with license agreements for all this crapware — be very careful and pay attention during installation)

    Note: You can download the portable version or the ‘Lite’ installer version to avoid all this crapware
    ======

    nor the picture of where to get the portable version.

    I started this when I did NOT see checkboxes for items NOT to install and got hit by somethings as the CANCEL button on those that I was unaware were installing before I got to the actual install implied the INSTALL which I took to be the app would be cancelled.

    I’ve removed the app, it has caused me problems as it cleaned out some settings for Thunderbird which it didn’t declare as for it.

    I wouldn’t trust anything that puts that much crapware on my computer and some that appear dangerous.

    Bottom line, when a TRUSTED site like this gives me a D/L link, I use it, all the original text did was warn to be careful of what gets installed, not HOW or how to get the Portable TESTED version.

  6. jipy

    [@PixelWizard] and everyone who has problems:
    English is NOT my usual language but, reading this article, I understood that:
    - The installer version has crapwares, bloatwares, malwares and/or others bad things.
    - There ‘s a “lite” version WITHOUT all naughty things.
    - There’s a portable version which is clean, like every portable version of any program to my knowledge.

    Like said Ashraf, if you didn’t want to take any risk you would have downloaded portable version!!!
    That’s what I did.

    At last, the author Briley Kenney is NOT accountable of you lack of knowledge, if you don’t know the difference between “installer” and “portable” version…

    ===> “installer” …installs DLLs and others into this #@&#ù£[€} of Windows registry which permits to install, too, ... crapwares and others. These can do their bad works because the program is ONLY working on THIS computer.

    On the opposite side, with the"portable" version, the program is installed into a folder WITH ALL the dlls, because, by definition, it needs to be able to work on USB sticks, external drives or others computers and then, MUST have his own composents INSIDE the folder and not into the registry . So, no installer can ... intalls malwares witch will make you cry.
    With portable version softs you are safe.

    [@Briley Kenney]

    ” don’t worry, be happy”! “ed” is a bad boy!

    [@Ed]

    Who are you for talking like that about the author?

    With your lack of knowledge, you should better … shut up!

  7. Ashraf
    Mr. Boss

    [@Tom] He did… the article clearly states it. I’ve bolded that section now so, you know, people actually read it instead of skipping down the download link.

    [@ChipMcK3] Odd, I’m not sure why we marked it as supported Mac and Linux too. Sorry, fixed.

  8. Briley Kenney
    Author/

    [@Ed] https://www.virustotal.com/en/file/8d6fdbbe3a03c342f4fb5621015c041764e6b56dfc701997924905fc722c4659/analysis/

    ^That’s the compressed portable version.

    https://www.virustotal.com/en/file/ba6da93df955546beff2914fb88bb93cd18c177b5f001eb8e01736bebb7cadbf/analysis/

    ^That’s the .exe file by itself.

    https://www.virustotal.com/en/file/97bdc1f880b5fb5726c3379c93e23034d9e4caf9fdc98a88ae082f0c48f0f629/analysis/

    ^And that last one is KCleaner.lite.exe which is not the portable version.

    I already apologized folks, but again I’m sorry. Let the record show that I did not intend to deceive anyone, especially since I originally stated that I used the portable version.

    Also, no one will be smacking my “pee pee.”

  9. Ed

    Virus total results:
    SHA256:

    077afa3f3077c14095ea5f90df8d57f50d990e03c850e2758041636b9d5dee98

    File name:
    kcleaner.exe
    Detection ratio: 1 / 46

    Analysis date:
    2013-04-27 23:18:47 UTC ( 0 minutes ago )

  10. Ed

    I have lost a lot of respect for this siteafter this, If I wasn’t paying attention this CRAPWARE could have done some damage to my system.

    Don’t know who Briley Kenney is, but he needs to have his pee pee smacked for posting this sh!t.

    Virustotal 0/46 my ass!

  11. Ed

    Not for me, from now on you guys need to do more research on software before advising it here.
    This software lit my antivirusup like a Chrstmas tree all through the installation.
    I didn’t even use the software, just uninstalled after installing it and it tried to drop a trojan during the unistall.

  12. Ashraf
    Mr. Boss

    [@PixelWizard] How did he not warn you? The article clearly says the installer version comes with bloatware. He can’t hold your hand during installation… if you don’t want to deal with bloatware, download the portable version or don’t download the program at all.

  13. Seamus McSeamus

    [@Tommy]

    You have to be careful downloading from KC Softwares. If you click the download button, you get the exe with all the crapware included, but if you look to the right there are three other oftions. The NoRK version excludes Relevant Knowledge (but still includes any other opt-outs), the zip version, obviously, is portable, and the Lite version is the program only, with no crapware of any kind included. Personally, I have only ever used their portable option, so can’t personally attest to any of the above, but that is their claim.

  14. PixelWizard

    [@Briley Kenney]

    What portable version?

    The one link to KCleaner you have given us (bottom of your article) opens a page with a download button. That in turn leads to a page with multiple products; the KCleaner download button there yields an installer – not a portable version. And no portable version is offered in this sequence of pages.

    So here you are touting the portable version, still giving us no link to it. Sorry – not good reportage.

  15. Tommy

    A comment from a user at CNET.com:

    “Cons

    Installs threats!, Relevent Knowledge etc.!, AVG and Zoon Alarm detected multiple threats!, I can’t understand why KC Softwares has a good rateing!, Sumo by KC Softwares does the same thing!, Scaned KC softwares site and Kcleaner no threats found!, if you have know knowlege of blocking and removing threats don’t install this software!

    Summary

    Be carefull if you install this software!”

    I think I may not install this guys…

  16. Seamus McSeamus

    I’ve not tried KCleaner, but I have encountered some tricky opt-out boxes over the past several months. It’s even more necessary now than it has been in the past to read those things carefully… the wording and placement of opt-out boxes are getting more confusing.

  17. Irv Spalten

    [@Briley Kenney]

    Searching the web found more info…

    I don’t think there was anything ‘wrong’ in what you posted, but some pictures would have helped me at least. Found this one, http://www.addictivetips.com/windows-tips/kcleaner-is-a-ccleaner-alternative-with-scheduling-options/, and I’m SURE I’ve seen that dialog box. Canceling however brought up another dialog box that just said do you want to cancel the install, which I *assumed* was KCleaner and I then accepted it, 2 more followed and then I finally cancelled it. So I was partially at fault. Only then after this was done did I see the other screen to not allow 2 other things.

    Another link, http://malwaretips.com/Thread-KCleaner-Free-Best-Cleaner, was interesting. On the second page is a French link and translation about some adware. Also mentions that a ‘lite’ version exists (maybe the portable?) and no adware is on that? I guess the prime problem was Relevant Knowledge?

  18. Irv Spalten

    [@Briley Kenney]

    Briley, I don’t know about Norton, yeah, it does have a lot of false positives, usually for not enough people using it? However this one was by the IP Address from Amazon (http://whois.domaintools.com/205.251.242.147) in my FIrefox browser? The install opened up 3 tabs from various companies, and I’m pretty sure one of those did this.

    I didn’t get those checkboxes as they were hidden by ‘license agreements’ for things I didn’t even know how they were to be coming in? I assumed they were from the app install and let the first two in and on the 3rd I closed it, and only then did the box with 2 checked to be installed show which I then unchecked. However I used StartUpCop5 and it warned me about an entry for something I didn’t recall allowing in was going to be added to the registry. I cancelled that and then looked at my Uninstaller I use and found 3 things installed today, the app KCleaner and 3 others. I uninstalled the 3 others.

    It is possible on W8 the Z-order processing could be different.

    If you *really* want the full info, I’ll uninstall KCleaner and install again with a Screen Capture I guess?

  19. Briley Kenney
    Author/

    [@PixelWizard] That’s because I did not traditionally install the application on my machine until after I read IrvSP’s comment.

    “For the purpose of this review, I’ll be covering the portable version of KCleaner.” I clearly outlined that in my review. When I encounter bloatware installs I ALWAYS note it in the review as necessary. With the portable version, there was none. It was a simple oversight on my part and honest mistake.

  20. PixelWizard

    Agreeing with IrvSP.

    This was bundled with a HUGE amount of very intrusive crapware, each one rather tricky to avoid, given the deceptive wording in the many, many dialog boxes during an installation.

    It was irresponsible of author Briley Kenney not to warn us. I’m not inclined to ever follow his/her advice again.

  21. Briley Kenney
    Author/

    [@IrvSp] Hm, I’ll be honest I tried the software on Windows 7, although I don’t see why the installation process would be any different. This is good to know though, thank you very much for sharing.

    When I installed the application on my machine, I was given the option to disable, or “uncheck” a box, which prevented the extra bloatware from installing. As for Norton ISS, that may have just been a false positive related to what one of the bloatware apps. I find that Norton and AVG are especially prone to flagging false positives a lot.

    I’m sorry that the software installed those applications against your knowledge. It’s more than just unacceptable, it’s unforgivable- especially these days.

  22. IrvSp

    I’m running W8 and I had a hard time with the ‘junk’ (“Comes bundled with bloatware during installation (if you use installer version) — be sure to uncheck boxes/decline during installation to avoid it”) using the installer version. Before I could even see the screen to uncheck any ‘install’ options, it put on my system 3 programs, one of which Norton ISS stopped.

    Category: Intrusion Prevention
    Date & Time,Risk,Activity,Status,Recommended Action,IPS Alert Name,Default Action,Action Taken,Attacking Computer,Attacker URL,Destination Address,Source Address,Traffic Description
    04/27/13 9:22:09 AM,High,An intrusion attempt by IRV-XPS435 was blocked.,Blocked,No Action Required,System Infected: Adware Crossid Activity,No Action Required,No Action Required,”IRV-XPS435 (192.168.1.130, 51726)”,”stats.myappsdata.com/installer.gif?action=started&browser=ie10&ver=1_26_153&bic=CB0D2C82845D40D491283BA9D1AB26CCIE&app=28430&appver=0&verifier=0699e2c9a4d68be3d0c4b6eb651bd17e&srcid=156585&subid=default&zdata=156585&subid=&pid=1468&ff=0_91&ch=1_23_6&default=ff&os=8&admin=1&type=193&asw=16″,”205.251.242.147, 80″,192.168.1.130 (192.168.1.130),”TCP, Port 51726″
    Network traffic from stats.myappsdata.com/installer.gif?action=started&browser=ie10&ver=1_26_153&bic=CB0D2C82845D40D491283BA9D1AB26CCIE&app=28430&appver=0&verifier=0699e2c9a4d68be3d0c4b6eb651bd17e&srcid=156585&subid=default&zdata=156585&subid=&pid=1468&ff=0_91&ch=1_23_6&default=ff&os=8&admin=1&type=193&asw=16 matches the signature of a known attack. The attack was resulted from \DEVICE\HARDDISKVOLUME1\USERS\IRV\APPDATA\LOCAL\TEMP\NSQ9BA6.TMP\EPKPSVKZU.EXE. To stop being notified for this type of traffic, in the Actions panel, click Stop Notifying Me.

    I opened up my Uninstaller and found 3 other apps installed with it, some clearly related to the above. Deleted those 3 (forgot the names).

    Also it never gets rid of some 1/2 MB of files… MSN Messenger basically, even when run as Administrator.

    Either W8 causes some problems or I didn’t see some check boxes? Got the file from the Author’s web site.