How to Clear Disk Space on Windows 10

How to Clear Disk Space on Windows 10

/ Andrew Holdeman

Clearing disk space can be an effective way to improve the performance of your Windows 10 computer. You can free up valuable hard drive space to help speed up your machine by deleting files and folders that are no longer needed. This can also make it easier to find important files when searching for them. Extra space can also help with system stability since many programs rely on adequate storage to perform correctly.

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Having enough disk space is also essential for installing updates and new software applications. Suppose your computer becomes riddled with junk files. In that case, this could cause errors or crashes due to conflicting versions of the same file stored in different locations – freeing up some extra storage helps reduce risks related to data inconsistency.

Empty Recycle Bin

For clearing disk space/storage space or running disk cleanup windows 10, using a recycling bin can help the pursuit. It will facilitate freeing up disk space by removing temporary files, unnecessary files, or downloads folder present in the recycling bin. However, burdening the disk space and changing the setting for the recycling bin on the device may serve the purpose. So here is how the recycling bin can be emptied for rationalizing, i.e., how to clear disk space on windows 10.

Step 1: Launch recycle bin from the windows main menu. Type recycle in the taskbar’s search box and double-click the option to launch.

Step 2:In the recycle bin window, navigate to the recycle bin tools tab and click the empty recycle bin option. Click yes to confirm the action. It will help to clear approximately 10% of disk space.

manage recycle bin

Step 3: Reach the recycle bin icon in Windows main menu and right-click the icon to select properties from the drop-down menu.

recycle bin properties

Step 4: In the properties window, select the drive in which recycle bin is located. Under the section of option settings for the selected location, select the option of a custom size.

edit recycle bin custom size

Step 5: In the next step, specify the space, i.e., in megabytes (MB), to limit space utilization by recycle bin. Click Apply, followed by clicking ok to complete the action.

recycle bin edit custom size

Disk Cleanup

Due to insufficient free disk space, you must be looking for suitable answers to clear disk space on windows 10. Windows provide users with a built-in feature for clearing the storage space and removing large or unused files from the device. Windows disk cleanup can be utilized to free up space on the drive. Here are the steps to follow:

Step 1: Launch windows administrative tools from the Windows main menu. Type windows administrative tools in the taskbar’s search box and double-click the option in the list to launch.

search windows administrative tools

Step 2: It will open a pop-up window for disk cleanup.

Step 3: In the disk cleanup window, locate the files targeted for deletion under the option of the downloaded program. Select the files and click ok to complete the action.

disk cleanup downloaded program

Delete Temporary and Downloaded Files

For targeting the delete action of temporary and downloaded files, one can easily approach windows settings to perform the action. This can be used to delete unnecessary files and clear up drive space to avoid storage errors. Here are the steps to follow:

Step 1: Launch windows settings from the windows key + I shortcut key.

windows i keyboard shortcut

Step 2: In the settings menu, click the option of the system followed by selecting storage from the left pane.

system information
storage options

Step 3: In the next window, select the files under the section of temporary files and click remove files to complete the action.

remove temporary files

Turn on Storage Sense

Windows help to automate various processes via certain features. The same goes for deleting the temporary files on the device without burdening the disk space. It can be done from storage settings. Here are the steps to follow:

Step 1: Launch windows settings from the windows key + I shortcut key.

system information

Step 2: In the settings menu, click the option of the system followed by selecting storage from the left pane.

storage options

Step 3: In the storage window, navigate to the option of storage sense. Toggle the storage sense on and click configure. In the next window, select the mode under the option of run storage sense, i.e., during low disk space, followed by selecting the duration under the option of delete files in my recycle bin for if they have been there for over and check the box for option delete temporary files that my apps aren’t using.

enable storage sense

Save Files to a Different Drive

If the disk space is low and it is not allowing to save further data in any form, then changing the location for saving data can be helpful. In this context, saving files to a different drive can serve the purpose. Here is how you can change the location.

Step 1: Launch windows settings from the main menu. Type settings in the taskbar’s search box and double-click the option to launch.

windows i keyboard shortcut

Step 2: In the settings menu, click the option of the system followed by selecting storage from the left pane.

storage options

Step 3: In the storage window, head to the link of Change where new content is saved, and one by one, change the location for data to be saved on the drive.

choose where new content is saved

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Disable Hibernate

To facilitate the fast startup for the device, windows provide a feature termed hibernate. You can hibernate the device instead of completely shutting it down. If you get low disk space issues, the hibernating phase may consume too much disk space to keep the programs running. In this context, disabling the feature on the device can serve the pursuit., Command prompt can be used to disable hibernate. Here are the steps to follow:

Step 1: Launch the command prompt from the Windows main menu. Type the command in the taskbar’s search box and click the option of the command prompt in the list. Select the option of run as administrator from the right pane to launch the prompt window.

run command prompt administrator

Step 2: In the command prompt window, type powercfg /hibernate off and click enter to complete the action. It will disable hibernate feature on the device.

powercfg cmd command

Uninstall Apps

The unused apps can be deleted from the device. They are just junk and burden the free disk space, which otherwise can be utilized for data storage or running the system smoothly. In this context, using the apps and features option in windows settings can help to delete the apps. Here are the steps to follow:

Step 1: Launch settings via windows key+ I shortcut key.

windows i keyboard shortcut

Step 2: In the settings menu, navigate to the option of apps, followed by selecting apps and features.

apps and features

Step 3:In the apps and features window, from the list of apps, select the one you want to uninstall and click uninstall to complete the action.

uninstall geforce experience apps menu

Enable OneDrive Files

If the storage space is low on the device and you have an alternative to cloud storage, i.e., OneDrive, then enabling OneDrive as a storage location can serve the purpose. Here are the steps to follow:

Step 1: Locate OneDrive in the Windows main menu and right-click the icon to select settings.

open onedrive settings

Step 2: In the settings window, under the tab settings tab, move to the section of files on-demand.

Step 3: In the next step, check the box for the option of Save space and download files as you use them. Click ok to complete the action.

files on demand

Regularly Clear Your Disk Storage

Clearing out your disk space is essential to maintain the optimal performance of your operating system. Over time, files become fragmented and take up more and more space on your hard drive, and this causes your computer to run slower as it has to work harder to find all the pieces of a file that are scattered throughout the disk.

Too many unnecessary files can cause errors when performing specific tasks or using certain programs. Regularly clearing out excess files allows you to free up valuable disk space for new programs or updates, improving overall performance in the long run. Taking some time once in a while to declutter your disk will help keep your operating system running smoothly and efficiently.

Another benefit of regularly clearing out your disk is protecting your data. Unnecessary files can accumulate and contain sensitive information you don’t want to be exposed to, such as passwords, financial records, or confidential documents. Taking the time to delete these files can help protect your privacy and prevent potential security threats.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Clearing Disk Space on Windows 10

Is it Safe to Delete System Files on External Storage?

It is usually safe to delete system files on external storage. However, it would be best to take precautions before removing files from your computer or external storage device. Depending on the file type and how it was created, deleting a system file could cause errors or render the device unusable. To ensure that you are safe when deleting system files, you must first research the types of system files stored on your device.

How do I Free Up Disk Space?

Uninstalling unnecessary applications is probably the quickest way to free up disk space. Go through your list of installed apps and remove any that you don’t need. This should help reduce clutter on your hard drive plus free up a significant amount of space.

How do I Find out How Much Space is on My Disk?

The amount of disk space available on your computer or device can be found by navigating the Storage section in the Settings app. This will show you how much free space is open and how much space has been used. You may also be able to select specific files and folders to see their sizes.

Does Disk Storage Impact How Fast You Open File Explorer?

Typically a hard drive with more space will be able to process data faster than one with less space. For example, if you have a 500GB drive and another 1TB drive, the 1TB drive will usually perform faster. This is because it has more available space for data processing operations.

Can I Recover Deleted Files?

In most cases, it is possible to recover deleted files. However, what you can recover and how long the recovery process takes depends on the deleted file type and the reasons for its deletion.

What are Temporary Internet Files?

Temporary Internet Files are small data from recently visited websites stored on your computer. They help the browser load web pages quickly on subsequent visits by allowing the web page to be retrieved from the hard drive instead of having to be downloaded again from the website’s server.

How Much Disk Space should I Have Available?

Usually, a good starting point is to have at least 50GB of disk space available on your hard drive. This is enough to store many documents and media files without worrying about running out of space. For more storage-intensive activities like editing audio or video files, it’s recommended that you have 500GB or 1TB of free disk space available so that there’s plenty of room for all other projects.

What is OneDrive Files on Demand?

OneDrive Files on Demand is a feature that makes it easier to access all your files stored in the cloud without downloading them onto your computer. It’s convenient for freeing upIt’sd drive space and managing storage, but sometimes you may want to delete a file from OneDrive entirely.

How do I Configure Storage Sense?

Once Storage Sense has been enabled, you can configure it to suit your needs. To do this, open the Settings menu, click on System, and select Storage. Under the “Storage Sense” section, you will see various options that you can adjust according to your preferences.

How do I Create More Free Space on My Disk?

If you want to create more free space on your disk, one of the easiest and most effective ways is deleting unnecessary or outdated files. Start by performing a disk cleanup using your computer’s built-in tool. This will remove any temporary files, Internet cache, and other miscellaneous items that take up storage space.

Is it Safe to Move Files to a Removable Drive?

Yes, it is safe to move files to a removable drive. Removable drives are convenient and portable devices that allow users to back up important data and transport it from one computer to another. When moving files to a removable drive, always use the “Safely Remove Hardware” feature in Windows before unplugging the device. This will ensure that all of your data has been safely transferred and no changes have been made during the transfer process.

How Long does it Take to Free Up Space on My Disk?

The time it takes to free up space on the disk depends on how much data needs to be removed. Generally speaking, deleting large files will result in more free space being available more quickly than if you were to delete multiple smaller files. However, this is only true if you do not have any programs running that are using up the freed-up space as soon as it becomes available.

Andrew Holdeman
Meet the author

Andrew has extensive experience with a wide range of writing platforms and automation systems. He has spent over 6 years creating content and troubleshooting for various companies. He also enjoys spending time with his family and his fiancé, while staying active and healthy.