First Look: Spring Cleaning 10, Mac OS X utility

Spring Cleaning 10

To run at maximum efficiency, every Mac needs periodic maintenance. While Mac OS X comes with built-in utilities that run automatically early every morning, your Mac needs to be running (not in Sleep mode) for these programs to work. You can always run the built-in Mac OS X utilities manually by typing in the proper commands, but a faster, more comprehensive solution is to use a separate utility program like Smith-Micro's Spring Cleaning 10 instead.

The main focus of this utility is to provide tools for removing unnecessary files off your hard disk, which can speed up your Mac at the same time. Manually deleting files can be cumbersome since you have to search for them and determine which ones you don't really need. To automate this process, this utility offers an AccessMonitor feature that can automatically identify which files you haven't last accessed after a fixed period of time, such as the last three months.

Choose to delete files based on age

Rather than delete files based on time, you can also choose to delete specific types of files such as PowerPoint (.ppt), Photoshop (.psd), or Pages (.pages) documents.

You can delete certain types of files from your Mac

Another way to delete files is to uninstall applications. To insure that you delete all files associated with a particular app, you can run the MacUninstaller. If you receive file attachments by e-mail, you can delete these files by running the MailCleaner feature.

The program can clean different types of files off your hard disk

One of the more unique ways of saving hard disk space is through the Universal Application Finder, which searches for apps that contain both Intel and PowerPC code. If you have an Intel Mac, you can strip out PowerPC code from all your apps. If you have a PowerPC Mac, you can strip out all Intel code from your apps. This essentially cuts the size of Universal Applications in half.

Another way to trim out useless files is by eliminating foreign language files. If you won't ever need to use the French, German, or Spanish version of a particular app, strip away these foreign files and save space without affecting your program.

Besides stripping away different files to free up space, this utility also offers features to make maintaining your Mac easier. Instead of forcing you to type commands to run the Mac OS X built-in maintenance programs, this app provides a simple icon so you can run these maintenance programs with a click of the mouse.

If your Mac has broken alias links, permissions, or damaged files, this utility can search and remove them to make your Mac run more reliably. For added security, the utility offers a secure file deletion feature that scrambles the blank space of your hard disk. This insures that any deleted files get wiped so no one can try to recover them without your knowledge.

The utility provides a variety of maintenance tools

Spring Cleaning 10 offers a variety of tools for freeing up hard disk space and maintaining you Mac to run at its optimum efficiency and its $49.99 price makes it affordable and indispensable for nearly everyone who owns a Mac.
  1. sribe 09/21, 11:42am

    "While Mac OS X comes with built-in utilities that run automatically early every morning, your Mac needs to be running (not in Sleep mode) for these programs to work."

    Uhm, this has not been the case for a while now... I know it's fixed in Leopard, not sure about Tiger...

  1. Guest 09/21, 12:23pm

    I'm an IT administrator that supports both Macs and Windows. There seems to be a lot of emphasis lately on cleaning temp files from Macs, and "uninstalling" programs using an uninstaller program, such as Spring Cleaning or similar.

    In my opinion, you're only wasting your money on utilities like these. Unlike Windows, Macs do not suffer slowdowns as a result of temp files (at least, not on any perceivable level). This is a uniquely Windows thing (which does noticeably feel slower over time). If it truly bothers you, download and install AppleJack, which is the safest way to clean up temp files (

    As far as deleting extraneous language files, yyes, it will save you disk space. But for most don't have disk space issues these days (and if you do, you likely need an external hard drive for space, not the little bit of space saved by deleting these files).


  1. syzygi 09/21, 01:30pm

    The publisher of the, also way over priced, StuffIt bloat-ware wants you to wast money on Spring Cleaning 10. Spring Cleaning was useful in the classic environment for deleting system extensions and sprockets. Remember those things that cause system conflicts and crashing your Mac? With OS X that's all in the past. The only thing you need is a program like AppZapper. It's quick simple and cheap.

  1. Feathers 09/21, 02:25pm

    If you're currently running a PPC machine, striping the Intel code from dual binaries is an act of insanity as it precludes an easy transition via Migration Assistant to an Intel based Mac in the future! Strip only if you plan never to upgrade!

  1. testudo 09/21, 11:08pm

    Wow, I should check the internet more. I didn't realize measly things like temp files could have some profound affect on computer speed. Why exactly do they slow down windows?

    And you didn't comment on the uninstalling part of the program. Some programs are nice, but a lot throw files in all sorts of places you may or may not know exist (and while it would be nice if they all provided uninstallers of their own, only a small handful actually do). Ah, if only there was a built-in installer system in OS X. Then Apple could just track the list of files that are installed, and then use that info to perform its own uninstall. Wishful thinking, I guess.

  1. Guest 09/22, 12:46pm

    Re: temp files on Windows computers--
    Testudo, that's one of the great mysteries of the universe, you would have to ask Microsoft. But, the fact of the matter is, it definitely does. Do a google search for "temp files slow windows".

    Re: uninstalling--
    Again, I think uninstallers on Mac are unnecessary, even for the small shareware fee these utilities charge. Yes, most programs will leave behind a few .plist preference files. But so what? These tiny text files usually occupy next to no space, and cause zero harm by themselves. They don't impact your computer, and they don't use enough space to warrant worrying about.


  1. Guest 09/22, 03:10pm

    what a scam.

  1. Guest 09/23, 12:15am

    I was seriously considering this software after reading this review, but after looking at reviews elsewhere I changed my mind. Previous versions have gotten very poor reviews, and most writers conclude that this software is completely unnecessary.

    From Macworld: "In sum, Spring Cleaning 8.0 is extremely slow. Itís potentially unsafe, since it shows you files that you should never remove. And it is generally superfluous, since the only operations it does quickly and safely... are tasks you can do with other programs such as your Web browser or freeware apps."

    On it got only 1.5 stars out of 5!

    Buyer beware!

  1. TC10 05/10, 01:55pm

    Any suggestions for utilities to track to see what may be slowing down my 4GB 3.06GHZ iMac 24?

    I have Parallels on my machine.

    Three things that I would like to address with appropriate utilities.

    1. I seem to be having problems with scanning on my HP L7680 all-in-1 printer. This used to work better.
    2. I am getting the spinning beach ball much more often than I did a year ago.
    3. I hear the disk churning at times with no apparent reason.


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