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Advanced Methods for Cleaning Your Personal Computer

Updated on July 26, 2017

Ensure that you read and complete the Basic Method for Cleaning Your Personal Computer hub first before proceeding.


Now for the advanced lesson of cleaning your personal computer. You will need to download 5 different types of software to help you clean your computer more thoroughly.

These are the exact same software tools I used as a professional to clean my client's computers. - come on let's not kid ourselves why reinvent the wheel if we do not have to. Work smarter not harder :-)


The 5 Software Needed

  1. CCleaner *free version.
  2. RKill *Use the @Bleeping computer download.
  3. JunkWare Removal Tool *Use the @Bleeping computer download.
  4. Adware Cleaner Tool *Use the @Bleeping computer download.
  5. Malwarebytes *Free edition

After downloading the above 5 needed software your downloads folder should look similar to this

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Install and Run CCleaner (Free Edition)

Within the Downloads folder double-click on the cc_setup532.exe (or whatever the current version is cc_setup<version>.exe) and begin to install CCleaner, provide administrative credentials if needed to start the installation wizard. Do NOT click on the blue install button. Clicking on the blue Install button will install CCleaner's Pro features 14-day free trial. Click on the blue hyperlink "No thanks, install free version".

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After clicking the blue "No thanks, install free version" hyperlink you will be navigated to a new installation window. You can now click on the blue install button.

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CCleaner will proceed to install after you click the blue install button. After the installation finishes, you will be presented with a setup completion screen, uncheck the view release notes check box and click the blue Run CCleaner button.

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The CCleaner application will open. Leave the default boxes checked and click the Run Cleaner button.

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A dialog box will appear to confirm the cleaning action. Completing this action will permanently delete files, press OK to continue the cleaning process.

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After the cleaning processes have finished CCleaner shows the files that were cleaned up and deleted to free up space. Next, click on the Applications tab and click on the Run Cleaner button, also leaving the default boxes checked.

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Press OK again to confirm you would like to permanently delete files from your system to free up space.

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After the process completes the program outputs what files were permanently deleted to free up space. Now click on the Registry button and click the blue Scan for Issues button. This will clean up unnecessary registry entries and clean up unused registry entries.

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After the scan finishes finding removable entries click on the blue Fix selected Issues... button.

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A dialog box will appear asking if you would like to backup changes to the registry before proceeding. At this point, you can choose to click Yes or No, whichever you prefer or feel comfortable with. For the sake of this tutorial, and since I know none of the problematic entries will harm my computer I am going to select the No button.

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Click on the Fix All Selected Issues button to proceed.

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Once the process finishes click the Close button then click the X to close the program. You are now finished with the CCleaner program.

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CCleaner tutorial

Run RKill

Why run Rkill? Well, as the site states:


"RKill is a program that was developed at BleepingComputer.com that attempts to terminate known malware processes so that your normal security software can then run and clean your computer of infections. When RKill runs it will kill malware processes and then removes incorrect executable associations and fixes policies that stop us from using certain tools. When finished it will display a log file that shows the processes that were terminated while the program was running.
As RKill only terminates a program's running process and does not delete any files, after running it you should not reboot your computer as any malware processes that are configured to start automatically will just be started again. Instead, after running RKill you should immediately scan your computer using some sort of anti-malware or anti-virus program so that the infections can be properly removed."


We will be running RKill and then Malwarebytes to scan for potential malware and removing the potential malware if any is found.

Let's begin.


Click on the rkill.exe in the downloads folder to initiate the program, enter in administrative credentials if need. The program will begin automatically. Let the program run. After the program finishes the program will produce a dialog box, press OK to receive a text file detailing what programs and tasks the RKill program stopped. Review the text file details to see if there are any items to be concerned about. Either way as the dialog states you should now be able to run your normal security program so that you can scan for computer infections.

At this point, we are going to install the Free Edition of Malwarebytes to scan for potential computer infections.

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RKill Tutorial

Malwarebytes

Begin the installation of the Malwarebytes software by double-clicking on the mb3-setup-consumer-3.1.2.1733-1.0.160-1.0.2251.exe, provide administrative credentials if needed.


Select your desired language and press OK to continue.

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Click Next

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press Next.

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Review the information, if you would like, and press Next.

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Click Next.

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I chose to select NOT to create a Start menu folder, but you may choose to leave the default check box unchecked, click Next.

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I chose to leave the default unchecked for creating a desktop icon, click Next.

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Click Install.

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The program will begin to install. After the program wizard finishes installing click the Finish button to complete the installation.

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Malwarebytes will automatically open. Close out of the introduction window.

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Click on Scan, select Custom Scan, and click on the blue Configure Scan button.

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Ensure the following options are selected and press the blue Scan Now button.

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Wait for the scan to complete... watch a show, grab a cold beverage and a snack the scan may take a bit of time.


2 hours later ...


If there are potentially unwanted programs found click on the Quarantine Selected button.

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A dialog box will appear saying that the potentially unwanted programs have been removed. The dialog box will ask if you would like to restart your computer to completely remove them from the computer click No for now. We have two other programs to run first.

Click the blue Close button and click on the X in the top right of the screen to close out of the program.

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Malwarebytes Tutorial

Junkware Removal

While RKill is still running go to the downloads folder and run the JRT.exe, enter in administrative credentials if needed. The JRT program is used to remove unwanted junkware from your computer. This program works in the same fashion as the RKill program. the JRT program will run on the command line, and once the program is complete it will generate a text file log of what actions were taken.

Junkware Removal Tutorial

Adware Removal Tool

While RKill is still running go to the downloads folder and run the AdwareCleaner.exe, enter in administrative credentials if needed. The Adware Cleaner program cleans unwanted adware from your computer.

Click the Agree button.

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Click the Scan button.

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Wait for the scan to complete ...


After the scan completes and if items are found click Clean.

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Ensure you save any work you may have been completing while you conducted the above steps you will now be restarting the computer to remove found items. When ready click the OK button.

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Once you click on the OK button a pop up will display asking you to Reboot your computer now. Click on the Reboot Now button.

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Adware Removal Tool Tutorial

Did you find this hub helpful or did the hub help clean up a problematic computer?

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© 2017 James Wassinger

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