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Solved: Virtualized Temporary Internet Files - How Do I get Rid of them to Free Up Me


kevindub's Avatar
kevindub kevindub is offline
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30-Jun-2010, 11:07 AM #1
Solved: Virtualized Temporary Internet Files - How Do I get Rid of them to Free Up Me
Have run into a low-memory problem on my C drive and conducting all the usual clean-up recommendations only manages to free up a couple hundred MBs. My hard drive is partitioned into a C and an E drive (each with 116GB). I use Vista and Internet Explorer. (As far as I can tell, this is not a RAM issue and my computer in not running slowly.)

The number of programs and files on my C drive could not account for almost 116GB of memory but I could find no other possible reason for my low disc space ... until ...
I went to command prompt and got it to list everything in C drive. Then I spotted a directory that appeared to contain a WHOPPING 94 GB of C drive memory. The exact name/address was as follows: C:\users\Kevin\Appdata\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Temporary Internet Files\Virtualized\C\Users\Kevin\Appdata\Local\FLVService. The list of files in this directory were mainly youtube and almost every other video I've watched over the past year! (This directory does not show up in Windows Explorer.)

So, are these videos being stored in virtual memory? Are they taking up that much space? (The term 'virtual' throws me a bit.) Can I delete this file safely and how?

So, thanks for reading this far and I would really appreciate any help on the matter.
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jdemnyan1116 jdemnyan1116 is offline
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30-Jun-2010, 11:46 AM #2
To throw a curve, I just followed your path and after the \windows, I have now temp internet file folder at all, checked the other folders there and none of them have a temp internet file , nothing Nothing virftual memory at all. Are you using Vista? Are you sure of the path you gave? Not much of a help still learning but my computer has no such folder after windows, Sorry. not trained enough to give complicated advice.
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kevindub kevindub is offline
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30-Jun-2010, 01:52 PM #3
Thanks for checking it out. I'm not too clear about this stuff myself but I downloaded Treesize (which is easier than command prompt) and the huge virtualized file (with the path described) is definitely listed there. (If something 'virtualized' can actually exist.) As it doesn't show up in windows explorer I don't know how to get at it and delete it. It seems that Vista or Internet Explorer has been saving (some part of) every video I've watched online in this location. I've read some descriptions of virtualized memory and get the idea that it's some form of security process but it doesn't seem sensible that it would use up all my C drive storing every clip I've streamed (not even downloaded). (I have Real Player on my computer which keeps popping up every time I watch something and asking me if I want to download it but I just ignore it and it disappears. But could it be downloading everything anyway? I also have a Freecorder Toolbar on my browser which allows some recently viewed videos to be reviewed but I don't use that facility.) Anyway, I'd like to get my c drive space back and this virtualized file seems to be the culprit. Any further suggestions or explanations would be very welcome. Thanks. Kevin.
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30-Jun-2010, 08:46 PM #4
I haven't used IE in a long time, but does the "Clear Temporary Files" (or something to that effect) button under Internet Options help?

Like jdemnyan I can't find that Temporary Internet Files subfolder after AppData\Microsoft\Windows either.
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kevindub kevindub is offline
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01-Jul-2010, 06:39 AM #5
Solution to Virtualized Temporary Internet File Eating Up Hard Drive
I have resolved this issue and regained 92 GB of disc space!

I have a program called Freecorder on my browser which allows you to review recently watched videos, a facility I never use. Its cache is limited to 500MB, which you can manually clear, but unknown to me it was saving everything to my hard drive. Why it did this I have no idea and because these files were virtualized I couldn't see them in Windows Explorer.

I downloaded and used Treesize (a great program in my books because it shows you exactly what is on your disc) to look at the virtualized files and, although there appears to be no delete option in the program itself, I right-clicked on the files and was presented with a delete option which, happily, sent each file to the recycle bin and from there I sent them back to the very ether from which they emerged! After I got tired clicking and deleting each file I just deleted the entire folder. And it appears to have worked! I regained an amazing 92 GB of memory and my C drive is now 80% free! Ah, sweet disc liberty!

So, my problem appears to be resolved! Treesize made it extremely easy to see what exactly was on my C drive and then to delete the unwanted files. I wish that Windows Explorer had as simple a utility because, after many attempts, I could not view those virtualized files and using Internet Options in IE to clear the Temporary Internet Files did not touch those virtualized files.

So, hope that helps anyone else who has encountered mysteriously used up disc space. Check for virtualized temporary internet files! Thanks again to those that responded.

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kevindub kevindub is offline
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02-Jul-2010, 06:04 AM #6
As I outline in the above post, I had a program called Freecorder on my browser which was saving everything I watched on-line to my hard drive! Do you have any similar program running? However, if not, I would recommend downloading Treesize (though I've no idea if it's entirely safe, no spyware etc.) and using it to look and see what's on your hard drive. You might spot a very large file, or at least see exactly how your memory is being used. (Right-clicking the files allows you to delete them.) I did not find an alternative way of viewing those files and clearing the temporary internet files in Internet Explorer did not help me at all. Of course, that's not to say that the other recommendations I've received such as using Disc Clean-up won't help in your case. But I have to say, I was totally stumpted as to what had used up so much of my memory until I found those virtualized files. 92 GB worth of them! There may be a way of getting at them in Windows Explorer but I don't know how. Perhaps someone else may have a better suggestion but my recommendation is try Treesize or some similar program. Hope this helps you out. Good luck with it. Kevin.
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02-Jul-2010, 08:06 PM #7
The Temporary Internet Files folder under C:\Users\<UserName>\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\ is set as both hidden and system. It won't be visible unless your system is set to show both hidden and System files/folders

The virtualized folder is a SuperHidden folder, same as the Content.IE5 folder that is also under the Temporary Internet Files folder.
To view them in Windows Explorer, navigate to here:
C:\Users\<UserName>\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Temporary Internet Files
Click in the address bar and type the name of the folder with a preceding backslash, either \Virtualized or \Content.IE5, then press Enter.

To change View Settings to show hidden and system files:
In Windows Explorer, click on Tools | Folder Options -> View tab
(In Vista/Win 7 press the ALT key to display the Menu bar)
Check the following:
  • Display the contents of system folders (not present in Win2K/Vista)
  • Show hidden files and folders
Uncheck the following:
  • Hide extensions for known file types (WinXP/Vista)
  • Hide protected operating system files (Recommended)
kevindub's Avatar
kevindub kevindub is offline
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05-Jul-2010, 06:05 AM #8
Thanks, TheOutcaste, for that very simple way of viewing the virtualized files in Windows Explorer. Wish Vista Help had just given me that instruction at the get-go. (Maybe they assume a level of computing knowledge greater than average PC Joes like me have.)

As I've mentioned above, I eventually used a program called Treesize to view those files but using the address bar is simpler, though I prefer Treesize because Windows Explorer can be confusing. Sometimes the folder 'Temporary Internet Files' does not show up at all in Explorer and sometimes it does. I had already set my folder options to show hidden files and folders. However, when I uncheck the 'hide protected operating systems' I get a pretty serious message from Windows telling me that this could 'make your computer inoperable'. (Last time I ignored a warning message like that, moving my games folder to my D drive to free up space, the threat that the games may no longer work was real. My games no longer work!) So, I think I'll pass on that.

Anyway, it's good to know that simple way of viewing the virtualized files. Thanks again. Kevin.
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