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Diminishing Hard Drive Space

Discussion in 'Windows XP' started by abstracts, Nov 20, 2011.

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  1. abstracts

    abstracts Thread Starter

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    For some time now I've been trying to get to grips with why the space on my C drive has been diminishing bit by bit for no apparent reason. I have only a very small storage capacity on the drive, 19.6GB, of which 6GB or 31% is free. Six days ago the amount of free space was 34%, hence my problem. After careful monitoring over the last few days I think I actually now know where it is going, but not why.

    As I only know the very basics, I will try and explain the best I can. I might turn my PC on and off 3 or 4 times a day (not recommended I know). Each time I do the program goes through a routine of updating.
    I've noticed very recently that each time it does that it can add as much as 16.7MB into the installer folder ie: 3 times on and off, 3 updates equates to about 50MB. Which as far as I can see just sits there taking up space. At present I have 460 files in the folder, taking up 4.5GB of space. I have no games, films or music downloads to complicate things, only Photoshop.
    I hope you can follow what I have explained and so tell me if all this is normal. It certainly doesn't seem normal.
    Cheers
     
  2. flavallee

    flavallee Trusted Advisor

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    Can you be more specific about these comments and which "program" you're referring to?

    I'm wondering if you have some sort of backup program that's in play here.

    ---------------------------------------------------------

    If you haven't already done it, do the following:

    Right-click RECYCLE BIN, then click Properties, then move the slider from 10% to 3%, then click Apply - OK.

    Right-click MY COMPUTER, then click Properties - System Restore, then move the slider from 12% to 3%, then click Apply - OK.

    Click Start - Run, then type in %temp% and then click OK, then delete everything from inside that temp folder.

    After you're all done, empty the Recycle Bin and then restart the computer.

    ---------------------------------------------------------
     
  3. abstracts

    abstracts Thread Starter

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    I might be confusing you with "program". What I mean is, it is the thing Windows does automatically (on mine anyway) unless instructed not to, and that is to update each time it shuts down. Each time I shut my computer down and restart the next time I have noticed commonly, a figure of 16.7MB deposited in the Installer folder. This then sits there taking up space on my C drive (about 300MB in 3 weeks) Regarding the three tips you give, apart from the Recycle Bin one, I have been carrying those out regularly for a while.
     
  4. flavallee

    flavallee Trusted Advisor

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    If you're referring to Windows Update/Microsoft Update, you might consider changing the setting to only notify you of new updates and not to automatically download and install them.

    -------------------------------------------------------

    Let's see what's auto-starting and running in the background and if any obvious issues need to be addressed.

    Go here and click the green "Download latest version" link to download and save HiJackThis 2.0.4.

    After it's been downloaded and saved, close all open windows first, then double-click the saved file to install it.

    Allow it to install in its default location - C:\Program Files.

    After it's been installed, start it and then click "Do a system scan and save a log file".

    When the scan is finished in less than 30 seconds, a log file will appear.

    Save that log file.

    Return here to your thread, then copy-and-paste the entire log file here.

    -------------------------------------------------------
     
  5. abstracts

    abstracts Thread Starter

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    Windows Updates is indeed what I am referring to. I shall follow your advice, but unfortunately not until tomorrow now. I'm not quite sure what is meant by "close all open windows". Can I safely delete any of the accumulated files in the installer folder.
     
  6. flavallee

    flavallee Trusted Advisor

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    After you download and save a file and before you install it, it's a good idea to first close any browser windows and program windows that you have open before you install the program. That prevents anything from interfering wiht the install process.

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    Are you referring to the C:\WINDOWS\Installer folder?

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  7. abstracts

    abstracts Thread Starter

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    Yes. That is, as far as I can see, where all accumulated MB's have been gathering.
     
  8. flavallee

    flavallee Trusted Advisor

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    Windows Installer Cleanup Utility 7.2 may be helpful to you, but it has its dangers if used incorrectly, so use it at your own risk.

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  9. abstracts

    abstracts Thread Starter

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    What are the risks I should be aware of.
     
  10. flavallee

    flavallee Trusted Advisor

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    Damaging Windows and breaking programs.

    -------------------------------------------------------

    Check out TreeSize.

    -------------------------------------------------------
     
  11. abstracts

    abstracts Thread Starter

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    I am aware of Treesize. It has proved very useful indeed in finding the cause of my problem as it's broke down my folders and files to their smaller components. Are you saying the Installer Cleanup Utility is something a novice like myself would be ill-advised to tackle.
     
  12. flavallee

    flavallee Trusted Advisor

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    Some people have used it with success. I've personally never used it. The choice is yours.

    ---------------------------------------------------------
     
  13. abstracts

    abstracts Thread Starter

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    Could you let me know the process of cutting and pasting the log to you.
    Cheers.
     
  14. DoubleHelix

    DoubleHelix Banned

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    You're fighting a losing battle. 20GB just isn't sufficient for a Windows install.
     
  15. abstracts

    abstracts Thread Starter

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    I've found since I discovered the source of my diminishing hard drive space problem, if, when shutting down I opt for the "turn off without installing updates" option, rather than allowing Windows to update automatically, no space is lost, or very little, on the hard drive. I was wondering if this tells you anything.
     
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