What’s the best cleaning app for Mac OS?. macOS has a reputation for being an easy-to-maintain, fast, and reliable operating system. In our experience, this is largely true. However, even the mighty macOS can fall prey to the accumulated digital garbage that clogs its pipes.
This is why there are several paid and free utilities for Apple’s line of computers that promise to give your Mac a good cleanup. We decided to try popular apps like CleanMyMac and CCleaner for Mac to see if there is any real benefit from these utilities.
The CleanMyMacX is a paid package that offers a long list of benefits as well as some pretty bold performance claims.
CleanMyMacX has three main components. There is a system file cleanup part that looks for lost and redundant data, allowing you to delete it. It even includes deeply embedded things like localization data that you don’t need.
The second part of the application is an antivirus scanner. This may come as a surprise to many readers due to the persistent myth that Mac computers are virus free. The truth is, the only thing that protected Apple computers from viruses, Trojans, worms, and other digital nasty things was obscurity. With a rapidly growing user base, it is now worth investing the time of malware manufacturers on these machines, so having a scanner is not the worst idea.
The last part of the package is performance enhancements, monitoring and tuning.
MacPaw’s specific claims are that you’ll get 4x faster downloads, 2.5x more responsive apps, and 5x the free space you would otherwise have based on testing them with the MacBook Pro 15 2016 year. With our 2019 MacBook Pro. 13 it’s hard to say that something has changed in terms of performance. It has already booted up in no time, and reboots on modern computers are so rare that it hardly matters.
What we say is that CleanMyMacX is completely comprehensive, effectively centralizing control of your system and reclaiming a significant chunk of free space on our cramped 128GB MacBook Pro. In our opinion, it is worth it.
- 100% comprehensive.
- Freed up a lot of space.
- Very easy to use.
- Makes tasks such as uninstalling applications easier.
- One-time and annual plans are available.
Rating: 4.5 / 5 stars
Speedup Mac is another paid package, but you can try it for free before purchasing. Unlike CleanMyMac X, Speedup doesn’t offer any anti-malware features. It promises that you will have more free space and a faster Mac.
This goal can be achieved in different ways. These include finding duplicate files, identifying large files that you might not have known about, and analyzing startup and third-party applications you are not using. It also targets unused language files, Mac junk files, and other similar scattered pieces.
This all sounds good, but after signing up for a free trial, opting out of credit card information, and downloading the app from the link that was emailed to us, we received an error message. The app needs to be updated for it to work. with the latest version of macOS Catalina. So we didn’t have a choice to cancel the challenge and move on.
Rating: 0/5 stars
CCleaner is a popular and reliable Windows-side system cleaning application, but many people might be surprised to know that there is also a Mac version. We’re only considering the free version here as an alternative to the paid apps we’ve reviewed so far.
Free CCleaner for Mac focuses on two things. The first is to make your computer faster, and the second is to protect your privacy. The paid version adds real-time monitoring, automatic updates, and premium support.
We liked this little app and it worked as advertised. The free version has few features compared to something like Clean My Mac X, but for the average Mac user who wants a good free solution, or perhaps schools that have labs full of Macs, this isn’t better.
Rating: 4/5 stars
All the apps we’ve looked at so far contain many features that try to entice you by offering a veritable set of optimization tricks, so we thought something like AppCleaner might be a simple alternative. This little applet does one thing and one thing only; it uninstalls apps correctly.
The principle of its operation is extremely simple, at least from the user’s point of view. Just drag and drop the application you no longer need into AppCleaner and it will find and list all the files associated with the application on your hard drive. Then, after viewing those files, you simply click a button to delete all of them.
The main disadvantage here is that it does little to help applications that have already been uninstalled and left their dirt on your computer. However, it helped us uninstall the apps we tried to uninstall, but their icons still cluttered Launchpad. Now they are gone and it only took a couple of clicks.
Rating: 4/5 stars
Do Cleaning Apps Really Do Anything For a Mac?
This is a very difficult question to answer because your computer’s performance in day-to-day desktop tasks can be very subjective. These cleanup apps are unlikely to make a big difference in benchmarks, and in the era of solid-state storage, it really doesn’t matter how jumbled the actual data is, as it can be instantly read from anywhere.
What then is the use of these cleaning apps? Well, one of the main areas they help in is freeing up disk space. In particular, modern MacBooks have pretty tiny system drives. 128GB and 256GB drives are not uncommon, which means you can run out of disk space quickly. To make matters worse, on macOS it is not always obvious where this space is being used.
From this point of view, we can really recommend these junk e-mail cleaning apps as a quick and convenient way to delete usually unnecessary files. You can do this manually, but it will take a long time and require precise knowledge of where to look.
Is an app like CleanMyMac or CCleaner safe? There is no perfectly safe application, so there is always a chance that these applications will uninstall something important or otherwise interfere with the normal functioning of your Mac. This is why you should always keep the latest backup using Time Machine or the backup software of your choice.
- It’s not clear if performance has improved.
- It did not detect any malware, but we cannot know if this is true.
- The application does not install on macOS Catalina.
- There is no one-time purchase option.
- It’s free.
- Works great.
- Not particularly attractive.
- Ease of use in the middle of the road.
- It does one thing, and it does it well!
- It’s free!
- It only does one thing, but again it does it well!
What’s the best cleaning app for Mac OS?
What’s the best cleaning app for Mac OS?