Windows 7 Forums

Welcome to Windows 7 Forums. Our forum is dedicated to helping you find support and solutions for any problems regarding your Windows 7 PC be it Dell, HP, Acer, Asus or a custom build. We also provide an extensive Windows 7 tutorial section that covers a wide range of tips and tricks.


Windows 7: Lost space on external drive - Lost 1TB of 2TB drive

28 Dec 2014   #1
soho1

Win 7 Pro 64-bit
 
 
Lost space on external drive - Lost 1TB of 2TB drive

I have a WD Red 2.0 TB drive (1.8 TB formatted) and have been watching it fill up (%used) for some time now. I have lost 1 TB to "unknown" according to WinDirStat. VSS is NOT RUNNING, which I read about in the tutorial here: System Protection - Turn On or Off.

So, what could be eating this space and how do I recover it?

FYI - the usual litany - No viruses; Disk Cleanup was run; Drive diagnostics pass; Chkdsk, defrag, etc. all OK.
Also, the thing I use the drive for is to maintain program libraries. I perform a lot of temporary folder copies and delete old copies. The recycle bin is empty. Have no idea why this space is lost.




Attached Thumbnails
Lost space on external drive - Lost 1TB of 2TB drive-oh_sht.png  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
28 Dec 2014   #2
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit
 
 

I've always found WinDirStat results a bit cryptic.

Maybe you can get a more sensible result with a similar free application:

TreeSize Free - Quickly Scan Directory Sizes and Find Space Hogs

The usual suspects are hibernation file, System Restore points, page file, malware/virus, or some program doing something you don't expect it to do. For instance, we recently had a case here where someone was using a cloud backup program that was mis-configured and putting the backups on local drives, rather than in the cloud.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Dec 2014   #3
soho1

Win 7 Pro 64-bit
 
 

Trying your TreeSize suggestion (just the free version at the moment). Now, first I'll say I have already checked disk AND filesystem integrity before commenting that TreeSize and WinDirStat produced the same counts on small folders (say 100k files or less) but when it came to larger counts, they don't match at all.

I would not have doubted WinDirStat, but the TreeSize is reporting just over 1 million extra (not quite twice as many) files in the same 1.8 TB. Not sure where it is getting such a number, I may have to download the pro trial and check again. I will also export all the subfolder and file counts to see which of these programs has an accounting error.

Perhaps along the way, I will find a clue, though nothing jumps out at me just yet.

BBL
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

28 Dec 2014   #4
soho1

Win 7 Pro 64-bit
 
 

OK, I have a possible clue now, but going to get some sleep before picking up on this...

A snapshot of c:\users seems to have a recursion error.

c:\users was backed up to W:\drive_c\users\

The resulting w:\drive_c\users\<myaccount>\Local Settings contains a directory called Application Data which has another copy of Application Data inside itself and on and on a few times (recursively).

Now, the actual directory c:\users\<myaccount>\Local Settings is a protected directory for which I do not have access.

But before I poke further, I am going to get some sleep so as not to break anything.

Meanwhile, one of these disk utilities is wrong as WinDirStat suggests the USERS directory is about 79 GB (a likely number) on both C: and W: drives. However TreeSize reports the w: number as 811.2 GB which is not a likely number, but is a large percentage of the missing space on my W: drive.

Either way, sounds like trouble considering that both Microsoft and Western Digital diagnostics show the drives and filesystems to be in order.

FYI, my entire C: drive is only 222 GB. So how 1.0 TB on my W: backup drive can be "unknown" to WinDirStat and looking like 800+ GB in recursively stored files to TreeSize Pro, is a mystery I will have to sleep on before picking up again.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Dec 2014   #5
soho1

Win 7 Pro 64-bit
 
 

OK, so this Application Data recursion has the problem that I cannot simply delete it. Windows says the file names are too long.

Can you recommend a file zapper that will handle the approaching infinite recursion?

Starting a list of things that don't work:
  • TreeSize (pro) seems to use Windows to do deletes, so doesn't work.
  • WinDirStat won't even recognized the highest Application Data folder in the recursion - as if not there
  • FileZilla won't even recognized the highest Application Data folder in the recursion - as if not there
  • BeyondCompare (v4) won't delete the long file names.


UPDATE: so my solution is, and seems to be working, to walk into each directory and rename "Application Data" to "xx" and then CD into xx and repeat.
now, the paths are shorter and Windows is able to delete files.

Marking this SOLVED for now unless I run into any further difficulties.

FYI also found an opensource project that is in Beta to backup Windows junctions, but HAVE NOT TESTED IT YET. For future readers, search for Junction Box (open source). Also thanks for the tip about TreeSize Pro, which seems to have been a useful tool for diagnosing the problem. The price tag is a little stiff compared to freeware, but I like to support tools that get the job done. Perhaps they will make single user licenses more affordable for masses in the future. Thanks all!

P.S. I have recovered 1/2 TB already and am not finished, but assume the rest will play out OK.


Attached Images
Lost space on external drive - Lost 1TB of 2TB drive-recovery_in_progress.png 
My System SpecsSystem Spec
Reply

 Lost space on external drive - Lost 1TB of 2TB drive




Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search




Similar help and support threads
Thread Forum
Lost my external hard drive again.
Hello, Lost my 3 TB external hard drive once again! One of my external hard drives has disappeared, by that I mean it no longer shows up with my other external hard drives when I double click on the Computer icon on my desktop. Besides “losing” the drive, I also am having problems...
Hardware & Devices
External hard drive connectivity lost
Hi I'm having trouble with an external hard drive which connects via USB. The drive now very rarely gets recognised and the drive letter does not appear in the directory. I have uninstalled all the USB controllers and let windows reinstall them however this has not solved the problem. I have...
Hardware & Devices
cloned hdd with easus back up, lost all drive space
I had my system setup as dual boot (with separate drives) while making a change over from win7 home premium to widows 7 ultimate. After i got everything set up the way i wanted it, in win 7 ultimate, I figured I would delete the home premium and clone the drive with easus utility. this way i could...
Backup and Restore
Hard Drive space disappeared/lost
Hey guys So I bought a windows 7 netbook a few months ago, and within the first couple of weeks it caught a big virus and almost nothing in the computer was working anymore. So I panicked and since this was the only computer I had, I downloaded a copy of linux, put it on a bootable USB and...
Hardware & Devices
Lost data on WD external hard drive
I was using an western digital external hard drive to store (not back up process) images, video, music etc from a windows XP machine. I upgraded to windows 7 machine and could see the files on the wd external hard drive. I then used windows 7 back up facility and now can't see my old files although...
Hardware & Devices
Lost external drive
Hello, I am using Windows 7 Pro. I did an upgrade this morning and when the desktop restarted, I lost an entire external drive. It showed the drive letter, but told me that in order to use the drive, I would have to reformat it. I tried the same drive in a Vista laptop with the same results. ...
General Discussion


Our Sites

Site Links

About Us

Find Us

Windows 7 Forums is an independent web site and has not been authorized, sponsored, or otherwise approved by Microsoft Corporation. "Windows 7" and related materials are trademarks of Microsoft Corp.

© Designer Media Ltd

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 13:59.

Twitter Facebook Google+



Windows 7 Forums

Seven Forums Android App Seven Forums IOS App