This is the final of a 4 part series evaluating and comparing 3 alternative cleaning suites. The three products are SlimCleaner, Toolwiz Care and Wise Disk Cleaner: Part 1: SlimCleaner — Part 2: Toolwiz Care — Part 3: Wise Disk Cleaner
Time to make final comparisons, evaluation and recommendations. I haven’t previously made any mention of registry cleaning components, so I’m going to cover that now. As we all know, the registry cleaning component in CCleaner is not very aggressive so consequently is also not terribly effective, BUT it is VERY safe and also includes an option to back up changes.
- SlimCleaner includes a basic registry cleaner under its Advanced tab. There is no apparent method included for backing up changes BUT, registry cleaning is disabled by default – in order to utilize this option users need to access the list of registry sections then select and enable areas for cleaning. It is pretty basic, ergo safe to assume it would not be overly aggressive nor terribly effective but, as with CCleaner, very safe.
- Toolwiz Care includes a pretty thorough registry cleaning component, it’s quite aggressive so also very effective but, as with all registry cleaners, the risk level also rises exponentially with the level of aggression. Backup is provided via the built-in registry backup/restore tool.
- Wise Disk Cleaner does not include any registry cleaning at all.
Here are the results of my basic comparative cleaning test. Remember, scans were initiated in ‘analysis’ mode with all programs at default settings and without any actual cleaning taking place:
- #1 SlimCleaner – 330.9MB
- #2 Toolwiz Care – 245.4MB
- #3 Wise Disk Cleaner – 197.8MB
- #4 CCleaner – 141.6MB
As you can see, the venerable old CCleaner has been well and truly outdone by its younger counterparts. Despite the countless updates CCleaner has gone through the numbers tend to suggest the old feller may indeed be getting just a tad tired and worn out. Perhaps it’s time Piriform forgot about the myriad minor updates and considered a serious overhaul instead.
I do like SlimCleaner very much, it is a tad underdone in the tools department, but that is a minor consideration which is more than compensated by its excellent feature-set and supreme efficacy. I would definitely recommend SlimCleaner as a top notch choice for regular cleaning plus simple control over startup items, services and browser add-ons, and especially for less experienced users.
To be honest, had I realized just what an all rounder Toolwiz Care is I probably wouldn’t have included it, I guess the “Care” in the title should have given me a clue. That said, it did place second in the cleaning test, bested only by SlimCleaner, so perhaps my original decision has been vindicated after all.
Unlike the others, Toolwiz Care’s primary function is not so much focused on the cleaning aspect, it is much more your complete cleaning/optimization suite. That’s not to say it does not perform the system cleaning admirably, it obviously does. Toolwiz Care is an outstanding program, combining system and registry cleaning with extensive tweaks and optimizations. The ‘Tools’ section definitely invokes the WOW factor, the most extensive range of quality tools I have ever come across in a suite. Although there are inherent differences, there is really nothing to pick between SlimCleaner and Toolwiz Care, both are top notch freeware and, in the end, it’s simply a matter of needs dictating which would suit best. In fact, I can see no reason why both could not be installed side by side.
Wise Disk Cleaner
This one is a huge disappointment to me, after reading favorable editorial and user reviews I really thought this software might be above average – not so. Compared with the other contenders it is pretty lean on features; zero registry cleaner, zero optimization, zero tools. None of that would have mattered so much though if WDC had performed admirably in the cleaning department, but as you have seen from the test results that has not been the case. Considering WDC focuses solely on system cleaning one could be forgiven for expecting well above average performance in that area. Annoyances such as the Ask Toolbar installation enabled by default (there is an opt-out) and the additional download of Wise Registry Cleaner also enabled by default (opt-out also) certainly do nothing to add to the appeal.
Wise Disk cleaner is very simple, very easy to use, and pretty basic. It did manage to just beat CCleaner in the cleaning stakes though, so although I would not generally recommend it, WDC may suit a section of novice users.
What can I say, my trusty old CCleaner has been well and truly taken to the…er…well…cleaners. I must say I am a tad surprised CCleaner didn’t compare more favorably in the test results.
And so time to bite the bullet – I’ve decided to go with SlimCleaner portable and Toolwiz Care installed. I’ll keep my old mate CCleaner too, at least for the time being, if only for sentimental reasons.