How to delete traces from your computer

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Alejandra Rangel
@alejandrarangel
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How to delete tracks on your computer using Windows tools


Each time you use a software or simply run and start the Windows operating system, cache and temporary files are generated from time to time which, in the long run, can take up significant space on your hard disk.


Furthermore, these files store information related to the use made of the system and software. An example could be browsing the Internet: the browser stores information relating to the history, temporary files and cookies on the pages you visit.

You can then use the built-in Windows tools to carry out procedures for eliminating traces that remain on your computer.

One tool you can use is the Cleaning disk Windows. To reach it, you will have to click on the button Search (icon with symbol of a magnifying glass), which you find at the bottom left of the Windows taskbar.

Then type in the term cleaning disk and click on the corresponding reont. You will be asked which disk drive to select, in case you have multiple partitions. Then select the disk drive you want to clean and click the button Ok.

A screen will then appear where you will have to select the items to clean up and then delete. If you want to do a deeper cleaning, then click the button System file cleanup. Select the drive to clean again and click Ok. You will then have to wait for the end of the disk analysis to have shown the previous window again, in which new entries will have appeared.


Select all items to clean and click the button Ok. Then confirm the procedure by clicking on the button File deletion.


A similar tool is present within the Settings Windows 10. Click the button Home, which you find at the bottom left of the Windows taskbar. Then click the button with the gear symbol, so as to open the Settings on Windows 10.

Now select the item System and then click on the item Archiving, which you find in the left sidebar. Then select the item What PC e, after the disk analysis is finished, click Temporary files. Then select the information you want to delete by placing a check mark in the corresponding boxes. Then click the button Remove files to delete the data.

How to delete tracks on computer using macOS tools


On computers with macOS, you can use the default tool for managing your hard disk space and then remove all those files that may contain traces of the use you make of your computer and the software you use. .


Then proceed as follows: click on the button in the top right with the symbol of a magnifying glass (Spotlight); then type in your search term space management and wait for the reonts to load. Then select the reont corresponding to the search term, named Space management.

When the window opens, now wait for the entire disk analysis to be carried out from the left sidebar, returning all the information on the space occupied by each single category.

From tab Advice, first of all, you can decide in the eventuality to activate the mode of freeing the space from the recycle bin for files older than 30 days (Automatically empties the Trash). You can also evaluate which files you want to delete by clicking on the button Review files, corresponding to the option Order.

You can also optimize your system by clicking on the button Optimize, corresponding to the item Optimize storage. In this way you will decide to delete all the movies and TV shows that you have already seen on iTunes or to download only the recent attachments on your emails that you receive through the app Mail.

You can also decide to display individual tabs, such as Applications, Trash can, Documents, Gallery, Mail. For example, by clicking on the tab Documents, you can view large files, those present in the folder Download.

How to delete tracks on your computer via software

The basic tools that are agolable in your operating system can often be unsuitable for your needs.


For this reason, third-party software has been created that have the task of satisfying more complex needs, such as the careful elimination of traces left on your computer.

So I'll talk about it in the following lines and I also recommend methods to prevent and keep your software clean, so that every trace left by you, for example during a Web browsing, is eliminated.

So let's see below what these tips are and what software might be right for you.

Internet browsing incognito

Even if it is not a real software, the Incognito browsing can help you not to keep track of the information that is recorded on your computer by the navigation browser. Many browsers now have this navigation mode and this can be activated with a simple click.

In most cases, this mode allows you not to keep the history of the websites you visit, without keeping track of either temporary files or saved cookies. However, if you download any file, it will be saved on your computer and will have to be deleted manually.

You can learn more by cononting this guide of mine on how to browse incognito.

Internet browsing data cleaning

Certainly the advice to use incognito browsing can be useful, but by now if you are already browsing normally with your browser, I imagine that now you would like to delete some traces on your computer relating to the sites you have visited. In this case, you will simply have to go and clean the browsing data that has been saved on your computer.

To do this you will have to go to your browser settings and clean all data: history, cookies, cached files. I suggest you read the guide on how to delete the history of visited sites, where I explain how to solve this problem of yours.

CCleaner (Windows/macOS)

CCleaner is a famous software that aims to remove from your computer all the traces left by the user based on the use he makes of the software and the system, both of the files that the system generates automatically.

If you are interested in this software, you can download it for free from the CCleaner website and click on the button CCleaner.com at the column Free. If you want to download the free version of CClenaer for macOS instead, you can reach this link.

After downloading the installation file, click the button Yes, in the window of Windows User Control and then click on the entry Customize in the installer window. Uncheck the items you want to remove and click the button Install. At the end of the installation, click on the button Start CClenaer, in order to start the program.

CClenaer presents itself with several tabs in the left section: Cleaning allows you to access the functionality of cleaning and deleting the files generated by the system and by the software according to your use; Register it allows you to delete the redundant information left by the software, perhaps even after their uninstallation; Instruments contains some features, such as an uninstall tool for Windows software and applications, deleting duplicate files, etc.

Before proceeding with the deletion of files on your computer, I recommend that you first of all reach the Settings of this software. Then click the button options that you find on the left bar and select the item Settings. To the item Cancellation type, you will find the option enabled by default Normal; however, you can opt for a safer deletion that will allow you to make it deeper, such as not to allow the recovery of deleted files.

Select quindi la voce Safety and then choose a method from those indicated in the drop-down menu. In fact, you can choose from a simple to a very complex overwrite.

After doing this, let's move on to the actual deletion of the files. Then select the tab Cleaning and select the tab from the bar next to it Windows. Then check the boxes where you want the files to be deleted. Once this is done, then select the tab Applications, where you will find all the software and applications supported by CCleaner, for each of which you can select which elements to delete.

After you are sure what you want to delete, then choose whether to click the button Analyze, which will first give you an overview of the files that will be deleted, or directly click the button Start cleaning.

I remind you that if you have chosen a cancellation Safety, file recovery using third-party software may be impossible. Therefore, consider what you will eliminate, as the procedure may be irreversible.



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