1. Scanning for cookies
Double click the CCleaner icon on your desktop. You'll first be prompted to scan for cookies. Ever gone to log into eBay, Amazon or Hotmail and either your username or password (or both) are saved on your computer? This information is stored in cookies.
It'd be wise to select yes here, as after we run the CCleaner it'd be nice for this information to still remain on your computer. You should be aware that we are relying on this program to correctly detect what cookies we want to keep, but it'd be wise to first write down or make a note of your existing username and passwords, banking customer numbers and anything else that is stored while your browse the web before running the cleaner.
2. Analyzing application data
You'll now see two tabs, 'Windows' and 'Applications'. Let's keep to the 'Windows' tab for now. In the list you'll see several checkboxes beside each data type. All are stored on your computer, but aren't necessary for your machine to run correctly but may speed up using your computer, as well as some options slowing down your computer. I would keep everything as is, so as to keep with the default settings.
The most important items that we will be deleting here are your temporary internet files, your cookies, your history and your recycle bin, in summary there are:
•Temporary Internet Files: Your temporary internet files are webpage's stored on your computer for quick access. For example, say you visit a page regularly which contains a lot of graphics. A temporary file is created, the initial time you load the page it may take a while to load, however subsequent visits will be quicker, as the graphics etc will be stored already in a temp file.
•Cookies: Text files containing information such as your usernames and passwords for websites you visit.
•History: Your history is a log of all previous websites you have visited.
•Recycle bin: When you delete something from your computer, it lands in your recycle bin. You can then 'Empty' the recycle bin to completely clear the information from your computer (although it is actually sometimes possible to get it back, but we won't go into that).
The applications tab runs similar checks, but on programs not associated with Windows such as other browser data like Firefox, or multimedia applications. Again, I'd just keep the defaults checked.
All of this can be safely deleted, but just be sure you won't empty your recycle bin if you have accidentally deleted something. Likewise, if you have stored, for example, a customer number on a banking website, this information will be stored in a cookie. After this program has run, you will have to re-enter that data so make sure you keep a note of anything saved on a webpage which you can't remember next time you visit. Only temporary saved data will be deleted, none of your work files etc will be deleted, so do not worry! The other options aren't as important, such as most recently typed URLs (so you can quickly access websites you've recently visited), but these can easily be re-entered. You can obviously uncheck anything you like, but I'd keep all the default settings. They all take up space and probably 90% of the websites you've visited you haven't visited since, thus keeping space on your computer for no good reason. Now that's out of the way, click 'Analyze'. You computer will be analyzed, and you'll be given a total number of MB's of space that can be cleared from your machine:
Once the analysis is complete, confirm you want to now run the cleaner to remove any rubbish on your machine.
3. Fixing the registry
Now we move onto the registry. I don't want to get too involved with the registry as it can be very complicated, but should you want a more detailed explanation you can click any of the words for a more meaningful answer in the FAQ.
As a very quick summary, the registry in your computer is a database that stores user settings, hardware and software settings and is essential for your computer to run correctly. It's very important we don't change anything manually in the registry but that doesn't mean we can't call on CCleaner to do this for us. The registry is one of the main sources of invalid or corrupt data so it's vital we clear it up.
Click the registry button on the left hand side.
Leave all the options checked by default and click scan for issues
A list of rogue registry keys will begin to generate. Once the process is complete, click Fix selected issues.
You'll be asked if you want to backup the registry, and yes we do. Should anything go wrong when repairing the registry, we can revert it back with a backup. Click yes and save the file somewhere you can later refer too, your desktop or documents folder for example.
Once the scan completes, a list of all the registry keys to be removed will be listed. Click fix all selected issues and then click close to complete this part of the guide, if you also have printer problems here are some great tips on Fixing Printers.
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