MaxDaddy
2 Bronze

What did "Clean Files" just delete?!?

This morning SupportAssist popped up saying that it had not run in more than 30 days, so I ran it.  The Clean Files action reports that it deleted more than 18,000 files including 15 applications.  How do I find out specifically what it deleted?  Is there a log file?  I would really like to know what it did.

Thanks

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19 Replies
Whoop D Doo
2 Bronze

Re: What did "Clean Files" just delete?!?

It's nice that someone got back to you on this...

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jbilinski
Moderator
Moderator

Re: What did "Clean Files" just delete?!?

Sorry for the delay, it’s been brought to our attention when the community forum was switched to the new platform we stopped receiving notifications on new posts, this is being addressed.

The following is the answer from the DEV team and probably won’t answer your question but we raised a request to include a log or list of delete files\app for future enhancement. I did however tested this by placing a few excel files in c:\windows\temp and it did not delete those.

“Dev Response”

  • Software Remediation: ‘Clean Files’ feature uses industry best practices to scan and remove unwanted files from the machine.
  • These are primarily system/application generated junk/cache type of files that has little or no use and takes up disk space on the user machine.
  • ‘Clean files’ removes junk files from multiple locations and does a more through cleanup than the built-in windows disk cleaner.
  • Typical example of additional locations are: - %temp% - C:\windows\temp.”

DELL-jbilinski
Social Media and Community Professional
#iwork4Dell

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MaxDaddy
2 Bronze

Re: What did "Clean Files" just delete?!?

Thanks, Joe.  I figured this just went into a black hole.  There's a balance between keeping things simple for the average end user and providing details to advanced users who would like the info and control.  In this case it's too simple I'm afraid.  It's the same with Tune Performance and Optimize Network.  It would be nice to get a report of what changes they actually make.

It's great that Dell provides these utilities, don't get me wrong.  It's a great differentiator for you guys.  Detailed logs are definitely needed though.

Regards,

Dan

Norman Diamond
3 Argentum

Re: What did "Clean Files" just delete?!?

"‘Clean Files’ feature uses industry best practices to scan and remove unwanted files from the machine."

How can I know what files I don't want?  I could open Windows Explorer, right-click a file, and select "Delete", but that's not industry best practices and I'm not qualified to choose which files I don't want.  I just wonder how to become informed which ones I don't want.

I have 4TB of disk drives, so 'Clean Files' was still in the middle of its scan when I figured out what it had in mind.  There's a "Cancel" button which is grayed out and unclickable.  However, I could close the SupportAssist application and I think it stopped.

I opened SupportAssist again, went to Settings, and disabled scheduled scans.  Actually I wouldn't mind having scheduled scans for other stuff like checking hardware health, I just want to disable 'Clean Files' until I learn what files I don't want, but there doesn't seem to be an option to just disable 'Clean Files'.

PBarranis
2 Bronze

Re: What did "Clean Files" just delete?!?


@Norman Diamond wrote:

"I opened SupportAssist again, went to Settings, and disabled scheduled scans.  Actually I wouldn't mind having scheduled scans for other stuff like checking hardware health, I just want to disable 'Clean Files' until I learn what files I don't want, but there doesn't seem to be an option to just disable 'Clean Files'.


I second this.  I want an app that automatically searches for updated drivers, BIOS, etc, but I really don't need all that other junk.  Deleting stuff isn't a "scan" (did something get lost in translation here?!). 

SupportAssist just wiped all my deleted files (aka Recycle Bin), which is really not ok; to be frank, I'm really angry about this and this sort of user-interface failure will weigh on my next purchasing decision.  It's like someone at Dell is totally tone-deaf to all the complaints about this kind of bloatware.  The whole purpose of the Recycle Bin is to be able to recover files you accidentally deleted.  I use it occasionally, and I think the inventors of that feature would be shocked at what SupportAssist is doing here.

Is there any way to make this a "formal" feature request (that there be some customization of the Scheduled Scan feature)?

UpToMischief
2 Bronze

Re: What did "Clean Files" just delete?!?

I have a related question to this...

You cite " industry best practices" and yet when it runs there is no setting to select the standard of deletion. My company usually uses Gutman as a standard for file deletion and I do not want any app deleting anything from our PC's insecurely. So my question is: What standard of deletion is used?

Incidentally, an option to turn that particular aspect of the assistant off would be most welcome if the standard of deletion is insecure. 

DELL-Nikhil K
Moderator
Moderator

Re: What did "Clean Files" just delete?!?

Hi Up ToMischief,

In case your system is part of any AD domain means if this laptop belongs your company then you are using wrong Dell SupportAssist application.

Application which you are using that is only meant for personal computers we have Dell SupportAssist application for Business users and that is totally different what you are using because SA Business application is all controlled by corporate IT Admin.

Thanks

DELL-Nikhil K

 

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Norman Diamond
3 Argentum

Re: What did "Clean Files" just delete?!?

If I'm not a business, is it possible for me to download Dell SupportAssist for Business anyway, instead of Dell SupportAssist for Home?  Will Dell SupportAssist for Business let me set options like not doing CleanFiles but doing the rest of the scans that it can do periodically?

[Off-topic:  Gutmann designed his method for users who didn't know details of their magnetic drives, so that no matter which recording method was used there would be some subset of the passes that would take care of the drive.  For modern magnetic drives Schneier's method is probably better and it just takes 7 passes.  But if the drive is an SSD instead of magnetic, wear levelling will defeat any kind of shredder unless you shred the entire drive.  On an SSD if you delete a single file the best you can do is let a sufficiently modern version of Windows use the Trim command, so the SSD's firmware will zero the internal cells that were actually in use.]

DELL-Nikhil K
Moderator
Moderator

Re: What did "Clean Files" just delete?!?

Hi Norman Diamond,

SupportAssist Business version is only meant for business users only because that has to managed through company IT admin.

You can continue using consumer version and for notification you can control it through 'Settings' top right corner you have setting icon.

Thanks

DELL-Nikhil k

 

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