<<A good (free) utility for removing junk from your system is CCleaner. It also performs a "clean-up" pass on the registry.>>
I've never found it necessary to install a program...to do what I can do manually within Windows. A few days ago, I did use Temp File Cleaner
as a test and I will probably use it again in the future.
As for running the "registry cleaner" of Ccleaner...the registry does not need "cleaning."
Bleeping Computer DOES NOT
recommend the use of registry cleaners/optimizers for several reasons:[list] Registry cleaners are extremely powerful applications that can damage the registry by using aggressive cleaning routines and cause your computer to become unbootable
The Windows registry
is a central repository (database) for storing configuration data, user settings and machine-dependent settings, and options for the operating system. It contains information and settings for all hardware, software, users, and preferences. Whenever a user makes changes to settings, file associations, system policies, or installed software, the changes are reflected and stored in this repository. The registry is a crucial component
because it is where Windows "remembers
" all this information, how it works together, how Windows boots the system and what files it uses when it does. The registry is also a vulnerable subsystem, in that relatively small changes done incorrectly can render the system inoperable. For a more detailed explanation, read Understanding The Registry
. Not all registry cleaners are created equal
. There are a number of them available but they do not all work entirely the same way. Each vendor uses different criteria as to what constitutes a "bad entry
". One cleaner may find entries on your system that will not cause problems when removed, another may not find the same entries, and still another may want to remove entries required for a program to work.
Not all registry cleaners create a backup of the registry before making changes
. If the changes prevent the system from booting up, then there is no backup available to restore it in order to regain functionality. A backup of the registry is essential BEFORE
making any changes to the registry. Improperly removing registry entries can hamper malware disinfection
and make the removal process more difficult if your computer becomes infected. For example, removing malware related registry entries before the infection is properly identified can contribute to system instability and even make the malware undetectable
to removal tools.
Edited by hamluis, 21 December 2011 - 03:15 PM.