It seems a little weird writing a CleanMyMac review on a site for photographers. The truth is though, CleanMyMac is so generically useful to anyone who owns a Mac computer, that it would be a shame not to introduce it to everyone who reads this site!
Shooting digitally, we are tied to our computers whether we like it or not. Our digital files seem to be getting bigger and bigger, eating up our hard drive space.
Many of us have switched to solid state (flash) drives due to the huge increase in performance, but prices remain high, especially when pre-installed in Mac desktops and laptops.
Needless to say, our hard drive space is precious. Whilst a Macbook Pro will still be running well after 5 years, it’s probable that the storage space will have dwindled. If you can recover this space, there’s much less need to keep upgrading hardware.
Whilst this is a review of CleanMyMac, it’s really just a long winded recommendation. I was about to splurge $4,000 on a new laptop as my old Macbook was crawling, but decided to give CleanMyMac a trial run before I made the jump.
After running CleanMyMac for a few minutes on the auto clean setting, I discovered I’d be able to recover around 30gb of hard drive space!
This didn’t even involve deleting large files and programs – the space was recovered solely from ‘bloat’ – i.e. useless files that were sitting dormant, taking up my valuable disk space.
I coughed up the money for CleanMyMac, recovered 32gb of hard drive space, and found that my Macbook actually started running faster!
Apps like Mail and iPhoto which create huge amounts of temporary files in the background now opened quicker and felt much snappier.
CleanMyMac Review | How to Recover Space
Even though this is a review of CleanMyMac, it really is just one long-winded recommendation.
Just download it for free here, run it on your Mac and see how much space you can recover.
You’ll be able to see just how much crap is lurking behind the scenes on your Mac, doing absolutely nothing except take up space.
There’s something really satisfying when you hit the big round Clean button! If you’re a clean freak who likes to have your Mac desktop organised, there’s a great sense of satisfaction knowing that the things you can’t see on your Mac are also neatly arranged, with nothing superfluous clogging up the arteries.
I’m sure Steve Jobs would have approved of this piece of software! ;-)
There’s a lot that goes on when you click the Scan button in CleanMyMac, and to be completely honest, I don’t have a clue what that is! I don’t really care either – all I know is that the software is safely removing things I don’t need, helping my Mac run faster and more efficiently.
I’ve owned CleanMyMac for about 2 months now and run it every week. I haven’t had a single issue with it, and have saved over 100gb of flash drive space!
My Macbook Pro has 1 Terabyte of flash storage. Judging by the Apple hard drive upgrade pricing, an extra 500gb of flash storage costs roughly $800. That’s about $1.60 per gigabyte.
This means that CleanMyMac has already saved me approximately $160 worth of space so far – not bad considering the software costs around a quarter that!
What does CleanMyMac Remove?
In short, nothing you don’t want it to. You confirm the things you’d like to stay, and what you want to get ride of. The software recommends the things that you really should delete, and allows you to review anything that it deems you should look at – things like Large & Old Files.
The things that CleanMyMac will remove that won’t affect the functionality of your system include:
- System Junk – Outdated cache files, old logs, extra application binaries, unused language files, broken app data.
- Photo Junk – this is an eye opener for anyone who uses iPhoto. Did you know that iPhoto keeps a temporary version of every single edit you make to a photo?! This quickly adds up to a bunch of hard drive clogging files.
- Mail Attachments – this is another one that will amaze you – your Mac stores local versions of all attachments and mail downloads that you’ll probably never need again. CleanMyMac will zap them all, and make your Mail app run much smoother.
- Trash Bins – yes, you can empty your desktop trash bin yourself, but did you know the Mail app and iPhoto also have trash bins? CleanMyMac will empty them all.
What won’t CleanMyMac remove automatically?
The things that CleanMyMac will analyse but require permission to touch are the Large & Old Files, and iTunes Junk.
I find the Large & Old Files scan pretty interesting as it shows me the things I haven’t used for over 6 months that are taking up a lot of space on my hard drive. I can select anything I’d like zapped, or I usually just leave it alone.
I rarely use iTunes, but it still seems to accumulate a tonne of crap. Things like outdated iPhone and iPad backups, remnants of iOS software updates and old Apps I’ve long-since deleted. I usually quickly review these and zap them all.
What else can CleanMyMac do?
CleanMyMac also includes some useful utilities that you can choose to run occasionally. These include:
- Uninstaller – Here you can choose to safely uninstall any app from your Mac. It sorts them by file size, so you can easily see what’s taking up valuable hard drive space. When you do uninstall an app, it’s often interesting to see the associated files that are removed with it – things that would have remained had you simply dragged the app to the trash, like you may have done in the past.
- Maintenance – this includes a number of system optimisations, including running maintenance scripts, flushing DNS caches, rebuilding of stuff, speeding up stuff… Basically keeping your Mac running like a boss.
- Privacy – instantly remove your porn browsing history, along with traces of your online and offline activity.
- Extensions – this is a cool one. It removes all those plugins and extensions you installed long ago but have forgotten about.
- Shredder – I’ve never used this, but it erases any sensitive data completely. Maybe a good one for any financial docs you want to get rid of.
Another really cool feature of CleanMyMac that I use almost every day is the ability to free up RAM at the click of a button.
When using Lightroom or Photoshop and it starts to crawl, one way I try and free up some RAM is to close other applications, such as my browser if I have a lot of tabs open.
If this isn’t convenient, I just click on the Free Up RAM button in CleanMyMac‘s task bar, which seems to do a great job of reallocating RAM to the app I’m currently using.
One final thing I like about CleanMyMac is being able to view all of my system’s most important statistics, all in one well designed dashboard.
Sure, this info is available elsewhere on a Mac, but it’s nice to have it only a mouse click away, all in one spot.
You can also run the RAM freeing utility from here too.
CleanMyMac Review | Final Words
Sorry this wasn’t much of a balance review of CleanMyMac, but the truth is, I don’t really have anything bad to say about this excellent piece of software!
It sets out to remove unnecessary files from your Mac and make it run better, and achieves that with a beautifully designed interface that’s incredibly satisfying to use.
We all buy expensive hardware, then moan about having to pay for software. With so much pirated or free software available, it’s easy to forget that there’s real people out there working very hard to build useful software that’ll make our digital lives easier, and ultimately save us money. There are 70+ people working at MacPaw doing just this!
I’ll just finish this review of CleanMyMac off by saying that this piece of software was the only piece of software I bought all the waaaay back in 2015 for my Mac, and I’m extremely happy with it. I’d also go as far as to say that it should be on every Mac owner’s computer.
If you own a Mac, click here to download a free trial copy of CleanMyMac right now. Then leave us a comment below to let us know how much CleanMyMac saved you ;-)
Disclaimer: I paid full price for my own copy of CleanMyMac in October 2015 and whole-heartedly recommend it. This review contains affiliate links, which means that I make a small commission if you choose to purchase CleanMyMac, but doesn’t affect your purchasing price in any way. Any commission earned helps pay for the running of Shotkit and my time invested into creating posts such as this. Thank you for your support!
Mark Condon is a British wedding photographer based in Australia and the founder of Shotkit.