How to fix E drive low disc space issues on Windows 10

By: Elsie Otachi
3 minute read

When you get E drive low disc space notifications on your computer, which usually appear periodically in desktop view or while trying to open your recovery drive, it could be that the drive is full and you can’t store any more files on it.

The E drive is a recovery drive that lets you store files needed during an emergency recovery, like when your system is unstable. It is a partition on the main hard drive, with less available space than the local C: drive.

If you store files in recovery E drive, or a backup program uses it to store files, it gets full quickly which can cause problems when you want to use the system recovery function. This is why you shouldn’t store files in there, except those related to a system recovery.

Windows has drawn a 200MB threshold line for optimal performance, so when your system falls below this, it takes automatic actions to maintain minimum performance capabilities.

If it goes below 80MB, then you’ll get a strong warning message as the system tries to free up drive space by deleting restore points.

But if it goes below 50MB, it self-preserves and this is when you get urgent warning messages saying E drive low disc space delivered almost every four minutes until you free up some disk space.

In order to resolve the E drive low disc space warning, there are some fixes you can perform to get some free space back. One of them is to first find out how much space is in your operating system and what data or apps are taking up the space, then decide what to remove or delete.

— RELATED: How to fix OneDrive for Business low disk space

FIX: E drive low disc space

Turn off System Protection

  • Create a set of recovery discs first
  • Right click Start and select System

  • Scroll down and find Related settings
  • Click System info

  • On the right pane of the open window, click System Protection

  • Go to Protection Settings

  • Look for Recovery Drive in the list of available drives. If E drive is listed, check if the protection is turned off or on
  • If it is turned Off, close the window. If it is On, click the recovery drive name to highlight it and click Configure.
  • Select Disable system protection and click OK, then click Yes/OK to confirm the message
  • Click Start and select File Explorer

Windows 10 Quick Access error

  • Click View tab

  • Select Options


  • Select Show Hidden files, folders and drives
  • Remove the selection from Hide protected operating system files
  • From Explorer window, double click Recovery drive
  • If you get a window saying “You don’t currently have permission to access this folder” click Continue
  • Copy the files to another drive if you created or copied any of them to the recovery drive and want to keep them
  • Find and delete files saved previously in the recovery drive by selecting them and pressing Shift+Delete to remove them permanently

— RELATED: ‘Free up space now’ cleans Windows 10 junk files in less than 2 minutes

Note: Do not delete files associated with system recovery as this can prevent a future system recovery from the hard drive. These include: $RECYCLE.BIN, boot, hp, EFI, Factory Update, preload, Recovery, RM_Reserve, system.sav, bootmgr, RMCStatus.bin, BT_HP.FLG, CSP.DAT, DeployRp, HP_WSD.dat, HPSF_Rep, language, or RPCONFIG.

  • You will get some confirmation windows open, click Continue then click Yes until all files and folders are deleted.
  • Set Windows Folder Options by clicking View tab in File Explorer and select Options. go to Folder Options>View tab>Select Don’t show hidden files, folders, or drives>Select Hide protected operating system files
  • Close File Explorer

The E drive low disc space error should no longer appear after this.

Did this solution help fix the E drive low disc space? Let us know in the comments section below.


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