Thoughts on cleaning apps?

I’ve been a Mac user since their inception, way back in 1984 when I was a freshman at Cal. I was The IT department for a division of the Stanford Medical school for over a decade. All of that being said, I’m very curious what you lot think of cleaning apps like CleanMyMac? I’m often bombarded with emails from them, and have never been a fan of apps such as these, preferring to manually maintain my computer(s). Especially since they’re now charging a premium for either the one-time purchase or their subscription.


CleanMyMac X is a reputable app and I’ve used it to clear up space on my Macs, but I recommend using them sparingly.


I use CleanMyMac X once a week or two weeks. It’s good for peace of mind.

Early versions were distributed freely, and often contained malware/viruses. Recently the company was purchased and since cleaned up the app. Unfortunately they did not change the name so it’s hard to know if you have a clean version or one that is trouble.

I prefer cleaning up libraries manually and use EtreCheck to confirm all is well.

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Do you use the Power User version of EtreCheck?

Yes, I use EtreCheck Pro

Have you upgraded to the paid Power User version?

yes, I paid

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Yes, I use the Pro (paid version) of Etreheck

Curiously, what do you get from the paid version, that you don’t get with the non-paid? I’ve read the offerings, but still unsure exactly how it helps.

I’m still unable to find anything online that shows me exactly what the benefit of the Power User version is. Would you mind attaching a few screenshots of what it provides?

from EtreCheck: Features

Power User package

Provides an advanced user interface with additional information, links to information from Apple and other sources, and buttons to easily access system settings and files in hidden directories.

Provides a graphical, interactive display of analytics information over the past few days.

Provides access to computer-generated solutions in case you don’t want to post your EtreCheck report on the internet. Solutions include one or more step-by-step tasks you can follow to help resolve your computer problems.

The Power User package is an optional in-app purchase. The price is USD $17.99 plus tax. The Power User package in EtreCheckPro can be activated on up to 6 separate machines. To purchase, you must download EtreCheckPro and try it first. Afterwards, you can purchase the Power User package within the software itself.

Paying for the Power User package also helps encourage the developers. We can hardly visit MacDonalds once for that price.


Sparingly means what?

I have used CleanMyMac for a number of years without any adverse events. Whether my computers run better than they otherwise would have I can’t say, but the app does remove a lot of unneeded files with every use. If the subscription pricing is an issue, you might take a look at Setapp which contains over 100 apps now including Clean My Mac and for me at least represents a real bargain over stand alone pricing.

I have to question that. Can you give us some specificity on exactly what these files are and how you know they are unneeded?


The developer site says this "CleanMyMac X chases junk in all corners of your macOS. It cleans unneeded files, like outdated caches, broken downloads, logs, and useless localizations. You can remove tons of clutter that lurks in iTunes, Mail, Photos, and even locate gigabytes of large hidden files. Mac cleaning tools in CleanMyMac X will cut the extra weight in seconds.”

As I said in my original post, I have been running the app for years without adverse events. The OS and every app that I use so far as I can tell functions ss intended and my data is intact. I run Clean My Mac every other week and on a 2107 iMac with a 2 TB SSD, it pretty routinely removes 5-6 GB. But I’m not trying to convince you, just sharing my experience with the app in response to TallTress question.

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I’d add that the app allows you to review a detailed list of the specific items it thinks might be unneeded and to exclude anything you want to keep before you run Cleanup.

How’d you get your hands on that? It must be a very early pre-release model!

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Yes, I do know what they say it will do, but my question was to the specifics of exactly what files it finds on your Mac.

As I covered before, most cache files that it deletes are put there purposely by the system to speed up your Mac. They are by nature quite large and must be rebuilt when deleted which requires a fair amount of time and CPU use to accomplish. Although cache corruption was common in the distant past, it’s now been shown to be rare. So although you are seeing what appear to be a significant recovery of disk space by running it, I feel certain that most of that space will be refilled shortly thereafter. I know that my drive space usage is quite level, no where near 5-6 GB less every two weeks and I have the identical iMac as yours.