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CCleaner...I want a divorce...


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This is a sad moment. I have been using Piriform's products, mostly CCleaner and Defraggler, for well over a decade now, and have been a huge supporter of these applications over the years.

Like many of you, I like to run a tight ship. I can't stand bloatware, adware, crapware, automatic updates, and in general anything that takes over your computer without your explicit consent (or anything with the words Norton or McAfee in the title). I like my computer to be just as fast and snappy on day 720 as it was on day 1.

So imagine my dismay when I recently went to install the new version of CCleaner on a brand new laptop that I was setting up, and within a day or two I start getting these popups: "There is a new version of CCleaner available do you want download and update now"?

Now, as mentioned, I run a very tight configuration. I even go through the trouble of installing Group Policy Editor on Windows 10 Home so I can turn off a lot of crap. It shouldn't be surprising that I like to turn off Automatic Updating/Checking in all of my applications, including CCleaner. I have done this for years and never once had a problem. However, it seems that with new(er) versions of CCleaner, disabling automatic updating/checking doesn't work. So I opened up Autoruns and sure enough, there's an entry for CCleaner to skip UAC, as well as do an update check. No big deal, I'll just delete, even though it was kind of disheartening that CCleaner installed an autorun without my knowledge. Or so I thought. 2 days later, I start getting the message again. A little more searching and I find an entry in Task Scheduler to autorun the CCleaner Update module. Now I'm getting pissed. So I delete it.

AND A FEW DAYS LATER I GET THE SAME POP-UP! This is with the option disabled in CCleaner, and I have no automatic scanners or background tasks running from CCleaner...I use the program by opening it up, running it, and closing it. I don't need yet another application running in the background chewing up my system resources, so I never use the automated bloat.

All of this leads us to today. I opened up CCleaner and get the Update Now! popup (mind you I just installed the newest version a week ago). I check all the usual places - no sign of an autorun anywhere in the registry, task scheduler, start up folders, etc. So I decide to come to these forums to see if I can find an answer, and literally the first few posts I read are from a year ago and are about CCleaner installing some locked cookie that is hidden from the user that gives you toast notifications (ie., ads) in the notification (Action) center periodically. Maybe this has been fixed, I don't know...

But anyways, this is all so sad. What happened? If I'm installing an application to help me control the bloat on my computer, I'm kind of shooting myself in the foot if that program turns around and installs it's own bloatware. It's like Norton or McAfee antivirus products. For all intents and purposes, those programs are viruses themselves - they quite literally inject themselves into every single process your computer performs - just like a virus. And they are impossible to remove. Just like a virus. Even their own uninstallers do not completely remove them. It's such sloppy and lazy programming when these companies are making money hand over fist.

So it's extremely disappointing that CCleaner seems to be heading down that road. Especially when I always thought of CCleaner as a quick and lite addition to my anti-bloat toolkit, and for many, many years.

I don't really follow these kinds of things but am I going out on a limb to ask is CCleaner under new ownership? I noticed that 'Piriform' seems to have been removed from the branding, as well as a new "CCleaner" dedicated website, etc. So let me guess, Piriform was taken over by some big money outfit that is now going to slowly destroy the program with bloatware, nag screens, offers, advertising, etc. I realize that it's quite possible that this is old news to everyone (if true), however as mentioned I don't really follow this kind of thing and only ever used to visit the website once in a great while to download a new version, as I can never wrap my head around the idea that a program that is working properly has to be continually updated. People would be so much better off if they followed the old axiom 'if it ain't broke, don't fix it'.

So what happened? Why is CCleaner slowly turning into bloatware? Guess I'm off to find an alternative...I feel so guilty after using CCleaner for so long...lame.

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I must congratulate you on your thread title.. eye catching.

Piriform is now owned by Avast and has been for a couple of years now.

Yes, in today's world things don't seem to stay simple anymore, and that includes software.

If I have software on my machine that calls out etc, I just disconnect from the internet before I run it... but that's just me.

I'm sure there may be more comments to your thread.

Thanks for a good read of a well written post.

CCleaner documentation can be found here

https://www.ccleaner.com/docs/ccleaner

Support contact

https://support.piriform.com/hc/en-us/requests/new

support@ccleaner.com

 

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Thanks for the kind words Hazel. I gave my thread the divorce title because that's what it kind of feels like after so long - I've got this kind of guilty, nostalgic, sad feeling.

And I agree with you as far as everything has to change - it's the only constant we can depend on as humans I suppose. I guess I'm still sour about the whole idea of 'Windows as a service', which is Microsoft's goto response for justifying forcing people to participate in automatic updates. Automatic update just has a really bad connotation with me, so when I see CCleaner start spamming me automatic update notifications, even after I've gone above and beyond the call of duty to disable it, it just doesn't sit right with me.

I guess I look at it as a very clear indication of the path that the new CCleaner owners are following. Oh well. It's their prerogative I guess. I already have some batch files that I run that kill background activity in certain applications like Adobe's whole CreativeCloud nonsense, but it just feels wrong that I should have to do that for a program that is supposed to be helping me remove bloat. Unfortunately this is the direction everything is going - ie., everything is being dumbed down so that it will all run in the cloud (ie more control for providers) - just like Office 365 and the aforementioned Adobe CC, mark my words, in the future our entire operating system with consist of a cloud app that has a handful of options representing by big blocky buttons because in the computer industry it's all about catering to the lowest common denominator - auto updates, fewer options, touchscreens, locked registry keys, nag screens, you name it. If a 4 year old can't touch the screen with his boogery fingers to launch the Internet, then it's way too complicated.

 

Anyways, I'm on a rant. Take care.

Veggie636

Straightup SJ

 

Edited by StraightUp
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8 hours ago, StraightUp said:

Unfortunately this is the direction everything is going - ie., everything is being dumbed down so that it will all run in the cloud

 

Unfortunately dumbing down does seem to be an industry wide (world wide?) process.

Blame it on the upsurge in users of Faceache, What's-upp, Twaddler, and other such social media apps, who never use their computer/tablet/phone for anything else and have no idea how their device actually works.
(Authur C Clarke: "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic").

I was recently fixing a laptop for a friend (large areas of dead pixels, new screen needed), looking at her browser she had never visited any other site than Facebook, Amazon, and e-bay.

CCleaner's Health Check is a case in point; it's meant for users who have no computer knowledge so would struggle with what is now Custom Clean.

You can't realy blame the software companies - they are chasing what is a major, and still growing, market of dumb users.

*** Out of Beer Error ->->-> Recovering Memory ***

Worried about 'Tracking Files'? Worried about why some files come back after cleaning? See this link:
https://community.ccleaner.com/topic/52668-tracking-files/?tab=comments#comment-300043

 

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What's annoying me is the automatic update option was enabled without permission after the last update I went into the settings and turned automatic updates off. Today I get a pop-up saying I have been updated to the latest version. Checked the settings and automatic updates is still turned off. Not looking good.

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The UAC "autorun" added into Task Scheduler is there so Windows doesn't always prompt/warn when launching CCleaner and prompting if it's ok to start it. It's easy to disable in CCleaner itself by going into: Options > Advanced

As for not liking software connecting to the web and subsequently annoying you in the process there's the Windows Firewall to block access, and the Windows HOSTS file to block addresses.

Edited by Andavari
typo
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15 minutes ago, unsecureddownloadpage said:

the free ccleaner download page, no matter how it is reached, goes over an unsecured connection.

Are you referring to https://www.ccleaner.com/ccleaner/download/standard ?

15 minutes ago, unsecureddownloadpage said:

eset shows sketchy malware-behaving type issues with the ccleaner program installs

ESET had a dislike of versions 3.09 through to 5.57 of the CCleaner installer due to the presence of an offer for the Chrome Toolbar for Internet Explorer.  That was remedied from CCleaner 5.58, which was released about 18 months ago, and we have not had problems with ESET since then (other than the occasional short-lived false positive on new releases that were fixed at their end shortly thereafter).

May I enquire which version of CCleaner you are attempting to download, and from where?

Piriform Homepage - [CCleaner - CCleaner Mac - CCleaner Android - CCleaner Browser - Defraggler - Recuva - Speccy - Kamo] - Product Support

Looking for your licence key, expiry date or download link? Check here first: https://www.ccleaner.com/support/license-lookup

To find out how we protect your privacy - read CCleaner's Data Factsheet.

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@Dave CCleaner That link you have given above is a live link and automatically starts a download.

*** Out of Beer Error ->->-> Recovering Memory ***

Worried about 'Tracking Files'? Worried about why some files come back after cleaning? See this link:
https://community.ccleaner.com/topic/52668-tracking-files/?tab=comments#comment-300043

 

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