Microsoft updates stole my hard drive

I’m precious about my hard drives – I paid for them and I don’t like them being swallowed up, especially when I’m not asked.

But as everyone knows, somehow the free space on their PC keeps shrinking even when you don’t seem to do much. And when you go looking for what might have “eaten it”, you either can’t find it or when you do find something then you’ve absolutely no idea whether it’s safe to delete the files.

Anyway, I did some PC housekeeping this weekend and managed to retrieve quite a chunk of hard drive space, the sources of which I thought I’d post in case it helped others

– Windows updates. All of the automatic updates from Microsoft create uninstall files in the windows directory. Over time this accumulates to a large chunky space, in my case several gb.
– Restore points. Whilst it’s a good idea to keep restore points to enable you to roll back if problems arise, these too accumulate. Whilst you can set how much disk space this uses, it’s worth checking how much is in use
– Windows temp directory. Stuff simply builds up in here.

After cleaning up, you should defragment your disk as this will have left much clutter behind.

Whilst disk space is cheap, it’s not really an option on a laptop. Moreover, rather like renting space in those warehouses for your clutter because you are already overflowing in your home, it’s just plain easier and cheaper to tidy up first.

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