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Windows 7: How Big Is Windows 7? 10GB or 36GB ?

04 May 2012   #1

Win 7 Pro
How Big Is Windows 7? 10GB or 36GB ?

How big is Windows 7?

What is using up 36GB?

It shows up as 10.5 GB in Properties of My Computer; but the overall hard drive I installed it on is showing 36GB is used up! This is before I've installed any applications. I also checked the size every folder on the drive individually that Windows installed. Combined they are less than 1GB, so I don't know what is using up the other approximately 24GB on this hard drive.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 May 2012   #2
Night Hawk

W7 Ultimate x64/W10 Pro x64 dual boot main build-remote pc W10 Pro x64 Insider Preview/W7 Pro x64

I just installed the newer version's beta or the Windows 8 CP on a 32gb flash drive and saw some 19.2gb available. That's slightly larger then a fresh install of 7. You wouldn't see the rest in the folder properties however since some drive space is automatically reserved for System Restore points and with the 32bit Windows you would need to take into account drive space reserved for the paging file used for virtual memory.

Restore points and swap space won't see any files there and remains hidden from view in most cases until you unhide all protected files and folders in the folder options view settings. The Recycle Bin also sees some space reserved as well since that acts like a temp folder when dragging things into it until emptied where you can still recover files from that.

All these combined take up the drive space you don't see while not being put in your face so to speak but tucked away neatly. These are all automatically maintained behind the scenes!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 May 2012   #3

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit

Including system and hidden files, it's under 20 gb.

Just guessing, your extra GB could be in page file, space devoted to restore points, hibernation file, or temp files of some type.

You would need to look at those items and use an application such as WinDirStat to see what is actually taking up space.

Turn on view hidden files through Explorer/tools/folder options/view.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

04 May 2012   #4

Main - Windows 7 Pro SP1 64-Bit; 2nd - Windows Server 2008 R2

All good points. ^^

You probably have a hidden hibernation file equal to the size of your RAM, too. It will be in the root of your C: drive. :)

EDIT: Saw that Iggy beat me to it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 May 2012   #5
Night Hawk

W7 Ultimate x64/W10 Pro x64 dual boot main build-remote pc W10 Pro x64 Insider Preview/W7 Pro x64

Another thing to mention here is how are you calculating? If you bought a new 500gb drive and haven't realized the 465gb that will be available converting decimal to binary and have only tallied Windows drive space used the rest is the need to recalculate taking in the conversion of units of measurement.

People not familiar with this can get tripped up at times without realizing the OS calculates drive space(binary) differently from how the Machine tool industry uses the decimal system. That would account for the rest of the drive space however. And then there's also the System Volume information to consider as well.

As for just how much space is set aside for restore points and virtual memory using the page file or even disabling the creation of that you simply go into the Control Panel>System>Advanced Settings section to make adjustments there. The rest however is controlled by the Windows Administrator(built in system admin) in order to see Windows work properly.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 May 2012   #6

Windows 7 Pro with SP1 32bit

I take an image immediately after installing and updating my Windows 7 Professional. The size of this image is 4.17 gigabytes. As it is a compressed image the actual size of Windows 7 with updates would be between 6 and 7 gigabytes.

However after installing all the third party programs including MS Office my Windows size is only 14.7 gigabytes.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 May 2012   #7
Night Hawk

W7 Ultimate x64/W10 Pro x64 dual boot main build-remote pc W10 Pro x64 Insider Preview/W7 Pro x64

It depends on just what you use for creating a full system image. For many using the Windows option they may report an 80-85gb image from a 120gb or larger drive once everything is on. The number of programs installed as well as how large they are will be a factor.

Gee I still got some temp folders to clean up. The Windows folder by itself just came in at 25.5gb!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 May 2012   #8

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Run something like TreeSize Free. It can tell you where the used space is being consumed.

As others said, you will have a pagefile that is hidden taking up space. You will have a hibernate file which will be taking up space equivalent to the amount of RAM you have installed. All these things really start to add up.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 May 2012   #9

Windows 10 Home Premium 64bit sp1

windows 7 is about including the Recovery portion of the disk

Which isn't bad if you know how to utalize all of the hard drives properly

Most of the time if you allow Internet explorer to control your downloads you might want to give it a look it gets full pretty fast

Unless you delete them or move them to another drive to a specific folder they will kill you useing up all space and you have to manualy delete them
My System SpecsSystem Spec
04 May 2012   #10
Night Hawk

W7 Ultimate x64/W10 Pro x64 dual boot main build-remote pc W10 Pro x64 Insider Preview/W7 Pro x64

One other thing to know is which kernel is the Windows edition there using as well as the edition of 7? For the 32bit the minimum would be 16gb while the 64bit is 20gb! You have to add that into your calculations as well.

Another thing to know is the often recommend use of the Disk Cleanup tool following any fresh install of Windows in order to remove all of the temp folders that will take up drive space. Delete files using Disk Cleanup
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 How Big Is Windows 7? 10GB or 36GB ?

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