You use your computer for work and also during your free time and it is precisely because of this excessive use that you are having space problems lately. Unfortunately it is normal: using the Windows operating system and installing programs on it generates temporary files that are often used as a cache for faster execution of certain operations. The generation of these files is not a problem in itself, but if you don't have a large hard disk, a considerable amount of data could be generated over time.
Even simple web browsing, in the long run, fills the space on the C disk. Browser browsing the Internet generates cache files and these take up space. Another example of why your computer might have space problems is related to the Windows recovery partition; the "fault" may also be due to the Windows.old folder that is generated after a Windows upgrade to a higher version.
In short, these are just some of the cases mentioned but, in general, temporary files are constantly generated on your computer. Don't worry, you can easily do without them and for this reason, in this tutorial, I'll explain how you can free space on the C disk. I wish you a good read and a good "job".
How to free space on your hard disk using Windows tools
In the following paragraphs I will point out some Windows tools that you can use to free up space on your hard disk. Then read carefully the instructions and procedures I will give you to achieve your goal.
One tool that can do the trick is Windows Disk Cleanup. This tool allows you to remove temporary files from your operating system as well as web browsing files, empty the Windows Recycle Bin or clean up some system features such as Windows Update.
To run this tool, click the Search button (icon with a magnifying glass symbol) at the bottom left of the Windows taskbar. Now you will need to type in the term disk cleanup and click on the corresponding result.
A small window will open from which you will have to select the hard drive to clean. Then select the one with the letter [C] and click the Ok button.
A new window will appear on the screen where you can select the items to remove from your PC partition. However, I recommend that you first click the Clean System Files button. You will be prompted again to select the partition (you will need to choose [C] again). Then click the Ok button to return to the selection of items to remove.
You may have noticed that the list now has more items to clean up. You will be shown the amount of space each item occupies. Select them by ticking the corresponding adjacent box and then clicking the Ok button. A message asking you to confirm the process, then click the File Delete button to start the disk partition cleaning process.
Windows 10 Archiving
In addition to the classic Windows disk cleaning tool, there is another feature built into the Windows 10 Settings panel: Storage. You can reach this tool by clicking the Start button, located at the bottom left of the Windows Taskbar, and then clicking the button with the gear symbol. This will launch the Windows 10 Settings Panel.
You will then need to select the System item, which you will find on the screen, and click the Storage item, located in the left sidebar. We're almost there: select This PC and then click Temporary Files. You'll be shown a few items that you can clean up, and you'll need to tick them to select them. Then click the Remove Files button to start the C-Disk cleaning process.
Uninstalling software and applications
Temporary files generated by your operating system or the software installed on it can be a problem; another problem can be that derived from software that is too large, which you can perhaps remove and, if necessary, replace with others that take up less space.
To do this, you will need to uninstall the software and applications using the Apps and Features tool in the Windows 10 Settings panel.
Click the Search button (icon with a magnifying glass symbol), which you can find at the bottom left of the Windows taskbar, and type in app installation or apps and features. Now click on the corresponding search term to open a new window.
In the Apps and Features section, scroll through the list and view software that you don't use or that takes up too much space, and you can replace it with lighter software. Once you've found them, click on each one and click the Uninstall button.
The uninstallation process will then start, for which you will have to follow the on-screen instructions.
How to free up hard disk space with software
If the tools on your Windows operating system are not sufficient, then you can consider installing third-party software. These software are designed to optimize the performance of your PC and allow you to perform a complete cleaning of your computer.
Among the many software that you can install on your computer to free up C disk space, the one that I personally recommend is CCleaner. It is a software that has achieved considerable notoriety for its ability to remove temporary data generated by the system or software installed on your PC from your computer.
If this software is of interest to you, you can download it for free from the CCleaner website. Once you've reached it, click the CCleaner.com button at the bottom of the column labeled Free.
After downloading the installation file, you will need to start it by double-clicking the left mouse button on it and then select the Yes button in the Windows User Control window. In the installation window, click the Customize item and remove the checkmark from all those items you want to remove. Then click the Install button to complete the installation of CCleaner.
Then start the program to display its main screen. On the left you will see several buttons that allow you to access the different features of this software.
- Cleaning: it is a CCleaner tool that will allow you to perform the removal of all those files that your Windows operating system generates automatically or those generated by applications (if supported). You will also be able to remove cache files generated by the Internet browsing of the browsers you use.
- Registry: The Windows 10 registry can contain a lot of outdated information that, although it takes up very little space, you may want to delete to clean up your PC thoroughly.
- Tools: in this section there are many useful features for your purpose. You can uninstall software and applications, you can also use a tool that analyzes files on your PC to see which ones take up a lot of space and if there are duplicate files.
If you want to proceed with cleaning temporary or obsolete files on your PC, then click the Clean Up button and select the Windows tab. Here you'll find all the Windows tools that generate temporary and cache files, including navigation tools if you use Microsoft Edge or Internet Explorer.
Then click on the Applications tab to view all supported software, and tick the boxes for the information you want to clean. You'll also find some supported browsers, such as Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome.
Once you have selected (or unchecked) the information you want to clean, click the Analyze button to start analyzing your computer. When finished, you will be shown a summary with all possible items to remove and the space they occupy. Then click the Start Cleanup button to start the cleaning process.
Another software similar to CCleaner is Glary Utilities. You can download it for free on your computer from its official website.
Then go to the website I provided and click the Download now button. The download of the installation file will start automatically and you will need to double-click on it using the left mouse button. Then click the Yes button from the User Account Control window and, from the installation window, click the Next, I Agree, Next button.
Uncheck the boxes that do not interest you, such as the Quick launch icon or Join the customer experience improvement program. Confirm this by clicking the Install button. When you are done, click the Finish button.
Then start Glary Utilities to access its main screen. Select, from the icons on the bottom bar, the one with the symbol of a hard drive with a broom.
It will automatically start a search for all possible files that you can remove from your PC. From the list that will be returned to you, uncheck the boxes for the items you want to keep; if you want to clean up the items, you will need to tick them. Then click the Start for cleanup button at the top to begin cleaning the disk.