CCleaner and solid-state drives (SSDs)

You can use CCleaner for Windows on SSDs:

CCleaner is designed to be compatible with solid-state drives (or SSDs), and you can use it on computers using these drives.

Some CCleaner functions can wear out SSDs:

We would not recommend using any secure overwrite procedure on solid-state drives, including CCleaner's Drive Wiper tool and it's functionality. This is because this tool is ineffective on solid-state drives and will wear them out much faster.

This is because of how SSDs work:

A solid-state drive's lifespan is largely determined by how many 'writes' any particular portion of the drive can take before failing. Because this is so critical, solid-state drives include functionality to spread the writes out along the drive - enhancing their lifespan and making it so that secure overwrite procedures cannot repeatedly write over the same portion of the drive.

Wiping or defragmenting SSDs with CCleaner:

Because of the concerns mentioned above, CCleaner's Drive Wiper tool is limited to only using a “1-pass” wipe on drives detected as solid-state drives. The Wipe cleaning function in Drive Wiper will always perform a “1-pass” wipe. The Security option can be set to additional passes for drives set as solid-state drives, but this is not recommended.

We also do not recommend defragmenting such drives due to the same lifespan concerns - you can find out more in our article on Defraggler and SSDs.

The CCleaner functions that can impact an SSD's lifespan:

  • Custom Clean > Windows tab > Advanced group > Wipe Free Space
  • Tools > Drive Wiper
  • Options > Settings > Secure Deletion and Wipe Free Space drives

Why is my hard drive shown as a solid-state drive?

In certain cases, the software cannot determine whether a drive is a solid-state drive or a conventional hard drive. In this circumstance, CCleaner will assume that the drive is a solid-state drive for safety. Alternatively, it can happen that the drive is misreporting itself to the computer. 

In either case, if you are certain the drive in question is a conventional hard drive, you are welcome to make use of the Security and Wipe functions in Drive Wiper, although the Drive Wiper will still be limited to “1 pass”.