How to Free Up Drive Space in Windows 10

This article describes steps one can take to free up drive space when running low on Windows 10.

Here’s something to remember; If your computer is running low on free disk space, you will not be able to install important security updates or upgrade Windows OS and your computer’s performance will suffer.

It is always important to make sure that you don’t run out of free drive space on your computer.

If you ever get a message that your computer is low on disk space, resetting Windows might help, but you may lose other stuff doing that and this is like killing a fly with a hammer.

Below we’ll show students and new users some ways to free up space so you can keep your PC up-to-date and running smoothly.

When you’re ready to free of some disk space, follow the steps below:

Use Disk Cleanup Tool

You can use Window’s built-in Disk Cleanup tool to delete temporary files and system files from your device and free up some disk space. To use Disk Cleanup, follow the steps below:

  • Select the Start button, type disk cleanup, then select Disk Cleanup from the list of results.
  • Select the check box next to the type of files you want to delete. (To view a description of each type of file, select the name.) By default, Downloaded Program Files, Temporary Internet Files, and Thumbnails are selected.
  • To free up even more space, select Clean up system files, and then select the type of system files you want to delete
  • When you’re done selecting the types of files you want to delete, select OK, and then select Delete files in the confirmation window to start the cleanup process.
Windows Disk Cleanup

That should free up some disk space.

Use Storage Sense

Windows 10 comes with a built-in tool called Storage Sense. If you turn on Storage sense, Windows will automatically do the above steps for you by freeing up space, deleting unnecessary files, emptying the recycle bin, and others based on how often you’ve chosen to run Storage sense.

To set up Storage Sense on Windows 10, follow the steps below:

  • Select the Start button, and then select Settings  > System  > Storage.
  • Turn on Storage sense.
  • Choose how often you want Storage sense to run.
  • To choose which files you want Storage sense to delete automatically, select Configure Storage sense or run it now, then select or clear the check boxes for options under Temporary Files and Locally available cloud content.
Storage Sense

Windows should automatically clean up temporary files based on your configurations above. You can configure more advanced settings, but the default above should be enough in most cases.

That’s it!