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Windows 7: Have some huge W7 folders taking up space on SSD

02 Aug 2013   #1
lucasbuck

Windows 7 Professional 64bit
 
 
Have some huge W7 folders taking up space on SSD

Hi. I've got a couple issues taking up a lot of space on my SSD. 1) is the WinSxx folder. I ran the dism /online /cleanup-image /spsuperseded /hidesp command, but the thing is still 11 GB. Is that normal and if not what can I do?
2) My pagefile is taking up 8 GB. It's set to automatically manage it. The machine is just used as an HTPC running Media Center. Should I just leave the pagefile settings alone?

Thanks for any help!


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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02 Aug 2013   #2
pbcopter

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1, Windows 8.1 Pro x64, Windows 10 Pro x64
 
 

The WinSxs is normal and actually most of the entries in that folder are just links to other areas anyway.

With 6GB of RAM installed, you can reduce the size of the pagefile. I keep mine at 1024 MB to allow for Memory dump files to be created incase of system crash.
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02 Aug 2013   #3
Layback Bear

Windows 7 Pro. 64/SP-1
 
 

I would recommend leaving WinSxS alone. My understanding it must be on the drive Windows 7 is installed.

How to address disk space issues that are caused by a large Windows component store (WinSxS) directory

From here.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Side-by-side_assembly
Misconceptions

The winsxs directory is thought to be much larger than it actually is. The directory contains mostly "hard links" to files that exist elsewhere. DIR and Explorer are not aware of the difference between an actual file and a hard link to a file, and so may count the same file several times, adding incorrectly to the perceived disk usage. The disk usage reported by these two programs is as if each hard link *is* an actual file.[12][13]
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03 Aug 2013   #4
lucasbuck

Windows 7 Professional 64bit
 
 

Thanks for the info!
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04 Aug 2013   #5
lehnerus2000

W7 Ultimate SP1, LM18 MATE, W10IP VM, W10 Home, #All 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Layback Bear View Post
I would recommend leaving WinSxS alone. My understanding it must be on the drive Windows 7 is installed.

How to address disk space issues that are caused by a large Windows component store (WinSxS) directory

From here.
Side-by-side assembly - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Misconceptions

The winsxs directory is thought to be much larger than it actually is. The directory contains mostly "hard links" to files that exist elsewhere. DIR and Explorer are not aware of the difference between an actual file and a hard link to a file, and so may count the same file several times, adding incorrectly to the perceived disk usage. The disk usage reported by these two programs is as if each hard link *is* an actual file.[12][13]
When are they going to fix that problem?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Aug 2013   #6
Layback Bear

Windows 7 Pro. 64/SP-1
 
 

Well I don't think it's a problem once one understands how things work.
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07 Aug 2013   #7
LMiller7

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit
 
 

Quote:
When are they going to fix that problem?
It isn't really a problem.

Hard links are a feature first introduced in Windows 2000 but not used by the OS until Vista. They have been used in Unix and Linux for decades. It allows a file to appear in multiple folders but only requiring storage for one copy. This saves a great deal of disk space.

The only issue with doing this is that it makes it difficult to calculate disk space. It isn't that the folder properties are lying about the disk space. It is a question of "what is the truth"? No matter how the calculations are done the results are going to be misleading for some purposes. The only real real "fix" for this is to not use hard links at all and that would mean significantly higher disk usage. I think Microsoft made the right choice.
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07 Aug 2013   #8
lehnerus2000

W7 Ultimate SP1, LM18 MATE, W10IP VM, W10 Home, #All 64 bit
 
 

Surely it should be possible to determine the existence of Hard Links.

I noticed in Ubuntu 10 that Nautilus had the same issue.
If I selected all of the folders and then checked the Properties, it reported that my OS partition was using ~1 TB!
The actual partition was 16 GB.
Luckily it didn't seem to prevent me from adding more files.
The Terminal and some other tools were able to correctly determine the amount of space that was actually used.

If someone has a small SSD, won't Windows Explorer will prevent them from being able to add more files, even though multiple GBs may be available?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Aug 2013   #9
LMiller7

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit
 
 

Certainly it is possible to determine whether a file entry is actually a link. But that doesn't help.
Hard links are different from shortcuts where you have a normal file and the shortcuts are just references to the real file. With hard links all references to the file, including the first, are all equal. All references to the file are equally real.

The NTFS file system is complex and the determination of how much space a specific folder consumes is only an approximation. There are numerous complications and many decisions that must be made for which there are no easy answers. It is also a slow operation.

While the amount of disk space consumed by a specific folder might be of considerable importance to the user, Windows couldn't care less. During all file operations the size of specific folders is never considered. In some cases such a calculation may be made but this is strictly for the users benefit and Windows never uses this information. To Windows the only thing of importance is the total used and free space on the drive and that can be calculated quickly and exactly.
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 Have some huge W7 folders taking up space on SSD




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