Skip to Main Content

Microsoft shuts out – then allows – CCleaner utility app in its Community Forums

Microsoft has apparently shut out – then re-allowed –  the CCleaner computer utility and cleanup app on its Community Forums.

As reported – then mysteriously retracted — by the Italian IT site Htnovo, Microsoft put CCleaner on its domain blacklist which would prevent people from recommending the company’s website. The Microsoft Community Forums are a place for people to get information on everything from Windows to malware. CCleaner is a cleanup and system utility app for Windows computers.

Taken from HTNova via

Maybe yes, maybe no for CCLeaner

This claim was subsequently walked back by Htnovo. In what appears to be a Microsoft-directed statement, the site says there were no Microsoft blacklists and the original article “did not match the facts of the matter.” However, the article also points out that while there is no actual ban or confidential treatment of the tools in the domain by Microsoft and official forum workers, Microsoft also “tends to advise against using third-party tools for optimizing and maintaining the operating system.”

There have been no new reports of CCleaner issues. The app has had issues in the past though for its invasive collection of user data and for being misused to distribute malware.

Can a good device be made better?

The move draws attention to the uneasy relationship between major technology providers such as Microsoft and Apple on one hand and developers of third-party tools on the other which are designed to improve the technologies’ performance and security. While Microsoft may believe its Windows tools are good, developers and users of optimizer and cleanup apps such as CClean and Avira System Speedup believe that devices can run better and easier with a little external help.

Step out to a third-party for security

It’s a similar situation when it comes to security for both Microsoft and Apple. Microsoft is pitching its Defender security app as the default choice and all a person really needs. However, the latest independent tests from AV Comparatives show Defender lagging behind the rest of the field — especially when it comes to false positives.

Apple dislikes antivirus apps because it upsets their company narrative that the iOS is completely secure – a claim thrown into question by the recent discovery of established iOS exploit chains.

Microsoft and  Apple would both like you to stay in their gated community and play with their set of tools and equipment. But sometimes, as users have shown, outside options have a real value.

As a PR Consultant and journalist, Frink has covered IT security issues for a number of security software firms, as well as provided reviews and insight on the beer and automotive industries (but usually not at the same time). Otherwise, he’s known for making a great bowl of popcorn and extraordinary messes in a kitchen.