To remove temporary files which have accumulated over time, use the free Ccleaner program. Temporary files are files stored by programs and Windows itself that are supposed to be temporary. Unfortunately they are often never deleted and accumulate over time.
We see computers with thousands of these ‘temporary’ files clogging up Windows and taking up Gigabytes of space on the hard drive. There are a couple of good reasons to remove them – although the space they use is not vital on large hard drives, temporary files can slow down Windows and other programs (because they have to load up thousands of these useless files every time they start).
Also, temporary files can be a privacy risk – they may store details of which websites you have visited or which files you have recently opened – if you share your computer then the other person might be able to track what you have been up to.
To remove ‘temporary’ files we will use the free Ccleaner software which has been updated to include cleaning of all the major web browsers as well as many other programs.
How To Use Ccleaner – Download the latest version of Ccleaner from Filehippo here and install it. During the installation it will ask if you want to ‘Intelligently Scan For Cookies To Keep’ – choose Yes (recommended) if you want to keep your persistent logins for Hotmail/Yahoo Mail etc from being deleted.
Once installed, open Ccleaner to display the main program window as shown below:
All the items ticked will be cleaned – the options ticked above will be fine for most users but untick any of the History, Cookies and Recently Typed URLs (website names) if you want to keep them.
Tip: the next time you start Ccleaner it will remember which boxes were ticked from the last time you ran it.
Perform The Cleaning – First, close your web browser to ensure it can be cleaned then click on the Analyze button to begin scanning for temporary files – when the scan is complete the right hand panel will show a list of all the items to be cleaned and their approximate size in MB (this may take some time on a slower computer with a lot of temporary files).
If you do not want to delete a particular item, untick it on the left hand side and click the Analyze button to scan again. When you are happy to go ahead with cleaning all of the items shown, click on ‘Run Cleaner’ to delete these temporary files - this may take some time on a slower computer with a lot of temporary files.
Once cleaning has finished, close Ccleaner – your tracks and temporary files have now been erased
Quicker Cleaning In Future
Once you have used Ccleaner a few times and are happy that the items you have ticked are correct, you can omit the Analyze step and just press ‘Run Cleaner’ to speed up the process.