7 quick methods to free up hard disk space
- Perform Disk Cleanup
- Uninstall Unnecessary Apps
- Run Disk Analysis And Defragment
- Clean Third-Party Software Temporary Files
- Find Duplicate Files
- Disable Hibernation And System Restore
- Use Storage Sense
A little extra storage space is always useful, but we often struggle to even to keep it on the optimal level, because it somehow always gets full. In this article, we’ll show you a few tips on how to save and clear some disk space on your Windows 10 computer.
How do I free up space on my hard drive Windows 10?
Method 1: Perform Disk Cleanup
Sometimes performing a little management of your hard disk is enough to grab a few extra megabytes of storage space. All you have to do is to clean your disk from unnecessary files, with Windows’ built-in tool called Disk Cleanup.
To access it and clean your disk with it, do the following:
- Go to This Computer, right click on the drive you want to clean up and choose Properties
- Click on Disk Cleanup under Properties window, and wait for it to calculate how much space you’ll be able to free
- Select the types of files you want to delete and click OK (you can delete temporary files, log files, files in your recycle bin, etc.)
- Now that you’ve cleaned basic ‘junk’ and freed up some space, you can gain even more free space by cleaning some unnecessary system files. To do so click on Clean Up System Files and wait until the cleaner calculates everything
- After you deleted the unnecessary system files, go to More Options and delete system restore data under System Restore, Shadow Copies (This command deletes all previous system restore points, except the most recent one)
Method 2: Uninstall Unnecessary Apps
All of us probably have some programs in our computer that we’re not using. These programs could take serious amount of disk space, and uninstalling them will definitely provide you with extra storage expanse.
To get rid of unused programs, go to Programs and Features in Control Panel and see what programs or apps you don’t use often, or at all. Uninstall unnecessary software and check your free space again.
There’s a column in Programs and Features that shows you how much space each program is using, so you can easily calculate how much space you’ll get once you uninstall these programs. If you don’t see this column, click the options button in the top right corner and select Details view.
Method 3: Run Disk Analysis And Defragment
To figure out what exactly is using space on your hard drive, you can analyze your hard disk with some of hard disk analysis programs.
Hard disk analyzers scan your hard drive and display every information about it, among other things, what is using space of your hard disk. We recommend you to use WinDirStart as your disk analyzer, but you can also search for other tools online.
After you scan your system with a disk analyzer, it will show you exactly which folders or files are using the most space. Delete unnecessary files or folders and your free disk space will increase (but be careful, don’t delete any important system or personal files).
After performing this task, it is recommended to defragment your hard drive, and you can check our list of best defrag tools for Windows, in case you didn’t make your choice of defragment software yet.
Method 4: Clean Third-Party Software Temporary Files
Above-mentioned Disk Cleanup tool is very useful, but it doesn’t delete temporary files from third-party software, like web browsers cache. So you need to use a third-party software for that.
We recommend you two very powerful products for this task, CCleaner and Advanced System Care. Just download one of them, run the analysis, and it will remove all unnecessary, temporary files from third-party software.
Method 5: Find Duplicate Files
Duplicate files could also use some space of your hard disk. Luckily, there are a few programs that can find and delete all the duplicate files, and free up some storage space for you.
Method 6: Disable Hibernation And System Restore
These tricks will definitely save you some space, but they will disable some important Windows features. So we don’t recommend performing these operations.
You should use it only if you desperately need more space, but use it on your own, because they might be risky:
- Disable Hibernation – When your computer enters hibernation, it saves the content of RAM memory on your hard drive. This allows your computer to save system state without any usage of power, so it could bring you right where you left of when you boot your computer next time. Windows saves the content of RAM memory in C:hiberfil.sys file, and when you completely disable hibernation, this file will be deleted.
- Disable System Restore –You can also completely disable System Restore in order to save more disk space. But it will delete all restore points and your backup data, and if something goes wrong with your computer you won’t be able to use System Restore to bring it back to normal.
Method 7: Use Storage Sense
The Windows 10 Creators update came with a feature called Storage Sense, which automatically deletes temporary files. It keeps an eye on your old and unused files and removes them regularly. For example, it’ll delete files that have been in the recycle bin for more than 30 days.
Here`s how you can enable Storage sense on Windows 10.
- Start > Settings > System > Storage
- Turn on Storage sense
- Click on Change how we free up space automatically option
- Select or deselect the check boxes for options under Temporary Files, Locally available cloud content, and Free up space now.
That’s particularly all you need to know about saving and freeing up your hard disk space, but if you have some other tips of how to increase the hard disk space, please share them with us in the comments.
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Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in April 2015 and has been since updated for freshness, and accuracy.