In 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
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.
- Quick 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)
- 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
- 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
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.
The 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).
There 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.
Version reviewed: 188.8.131.52
Supported OS: Windows (XP, Vista, Seven)
Download size: 676KB (portable), 1.82MB (installer)
Is it portable? Yes
KCleaner homepage