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Clean and recover disk space with Wise Disk Cleaner Pro, now free

Recover useful disk space and throw out the junk with this powerful yet intuitive freeware.

WiseCleaner's Wise Disk Cleaner Professional is now free to all home users, so we took a look at it to see how it fared against the large and growing field of freeware system cleaners. We found it easy to use but thorough, with expert options (and frequent warnings to keep novices from trying them) though most users will find Wise Disk Cleaner's default settings perfectly safe.

Wise Disk Cleaner's interface leans toward the "clean and simple" end of the system utility style chart, with none of the huge fonts and overbearing logos found in some tools. Three tabs access the Common Cleaner, Advanced Cleaner, and Slimming System features, each with expandable views showing increasingly fine levels of detail and plenty of check boxes to include or exclude data from scanning and cleaning. The Advanced tab let us select file types individually and choose whether to scan all or some of our drives or browse to individual directories or folders for highly targeted scans. We could also roll back changes by clicking Restore and schedule automatic cleaning jobs. Pressing F1 opened a detailed online Help site. Wise Disk Cleaner completed the scanning and cleaning stages quickly, finishing with a note that some files would be cleaned when the system reboots. Many tools simply skip these files; that's one big checkmark in Wise Disk Cleaner's favor. Reboot was happily uneventful.

Many system cleaners promise to recover disk space, so we had low expectations for the Slimming System tool's ability to find more than a few megabytes of recoverable disk space, especially on a tidy SSD "C" Drive. We clicked Scan and found 2.0 GB. Wait; what? Two gigabytes? The Windows Installer baseline cache is 1.5 GB right off the bat; that can go. Support for languages we don't need? Sample music, video, and background files we wouldn't be caught dead using? Let's do this thing. Sure enough; 1.9 GB of disk space recovered. Wise Disk Cleaner's look isn't flashy, but its efficient layout, its ability to clean files upon reboot, and its user-friendly yet effective tool for recovering disk space make it stand out from the crowd.

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