Free up Windows 10 hard drive space

free up hard drive space windows 10
free up hard drive space windows 10

Last updated: July 3, 2022

As operating systems and software applications improve, they become more and more demanding on disk space. Even if the capacity of the internal hard drives increases steadily, it may happen that the internal hard drive of the computer saturates and has need of free up space.

Several methods exist under Windows 10 Which make it possible to free up hard disk space: Discover the best of them.

Free up disk space in Windows 10 using Storage Assistant

We access thestorage assistant via [Start / Settings / System / Storage]. We can then have a view of all the hard disk partitions and how the space is occupied (see Example of storage wizard below).

Windows 10 Storage Assistant

To use thestorage assistant, you must activate it, then configure it so that it frees up space automatically. This will allow your computer to regularly clean the system and applications of unnecessary files. For this, the storage assistant acts on three parameters (see the Windows 10 storage assistant settings screen below):

  • temporary files not used by applications
  • the files contained in the recycle bin (with configurable delay)
  • the downloaded files found in the [Downloads] folder (with configurable delay). For this last option, I recommend manually choosing the downloaded files to delete and leaving the option set to [Never]
Windows 10 storage assistant setup

Free up disk space in Windows 10 using Disk Cleanup

We access the disc cleaning by clicking [Start] and then typing [Disk Cleanup].

When starting Disk Cleanup, you must first select the hard disk partition to clean [C: /], [D: /], [E: /], [F: /] etc.

After a short time of analyzing the partition, we obtain a list of the different types of files that can be deleted, with an estimate of the possible free space.

Select the options of your choice to free up space on your hard drive (see the options in the screenshot below).

Hard drive cleanup in Windows 10

The Disk Cleaner also allows, using a separate option to clean system files ([Clean system files] button). This operation allows, after a short scan lasting a few minutes, to obtain a list of the system files that can be deleted (see the system files clean-up screen below).

Clean up system files in Windows 10

Each of the options presented is accompanied by a short description allowing you to assess the relevance or not of its deletion.

Free up disk space in Windows 10 by uninstalling features or programs

Disk cleanup is accessed by uninstalling features or programs by clicking on [Start], then choosing [Settings / Applications / Applications and features].

You have several options: either uninstalling optional features or uninstalling applications (see screenshot below).

Managing features and programs in Windows 10

1) Management of optional features in Windows 10

These features are not essential for the operation of the Windows 10 system. Before uninstalling any of these features, it is advisable to find out about its exact role within Windows 10.

The free space is indicated on the left next to each of these features.

To uninstall one of these features, all you have to do is click on it, an [Uninstall] button is displayed, click on it. (see management of optional features below).

Managing optional features in Windows 10

2) Uninstalling applications on Windows 10

The list of applications found under Windows 10 is displayed in the main 'Apps and features' screen. Same principle of indicating the space used displayed on the left next to each application (see example of the list of applications below).

It is up to you to know the various system applications as well as those that you have installed on your computer in order to proceed with discernment of the applications and programs.

To uninstall an application, simply click once on the name of the application to display the [Uninstall] button. Then [Uninstall].

Uninstalling applications on Windows 10

EL JAOUARI is an author and trainer. Passionate about IT security and new technologies. His tutorials have helped many people to better master today's computer tools.