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Windows 7: Windows 7 folder is huge

30 Apr 2014   #11

Windows 7, XP, Linux

I have a Windows 7 machine with a 64 GB c: partition and it shows as 1 GB free, but properties of everything shows 40 GB used. The swap is on another drive and there is nothing in recycling and the shadow stuff is turned off. Ran cleaner and it indicated deleting 2 GB, but the space did not go to the free pool...

WinDirStat of c: reports:
.dll Application 14.8G
.sys System files 6.4G
.exe Application 4.6G
.cab Archives 3.6G
.h .h files 2.7G
.a .a files 2.6G
.msi Instailler 2.6G
. local disk 2.2G
.log text files 2.1G
.msp MS patches 1.8G
.vhd VM files 1.4G
.ci CI files 1.2G
.edb EDB files 1.1G
.txt Test files 1.0G
1) Were is the other 24 GByte?
2) Why is windows 40 GB - so HUGE?
3) Is there a way to make the c: drive read only?
(Enable for upgrades, but otherwise read only - no user space, no temp files)

My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Apr 2014   #12

Windows 7 Pro x64 Windows 10 Pro x64

You should start your own thread, you will get more help that way :)

System Restore takes up space, the page file takes up space, and windows takes up about 16 to 20 GBs
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Apr 2014   #13

Win8/8.1,Win7-U64, Vista U64, uncounted Linux distor's

16gb is a small Windows folder, mine is 23gb and I have User, temp and swap on the spinner. Another box with a fresh install of 7 shows 15.8gb.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

30 Apr 2014   #14

Windows 7 Pro x64 Windows 10 Pro x64

Mine is 20 GB, with all my apps. I don`t use a page file, and I don`t use system restore.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Apr 2014   #15

Windows 7 Professional x64

Another tip is to disable hibernation. Open a command prompt as Admin, then type powercfg -h off .
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Apr 2014   #16

Windows 7, XP, Linux

> Mine is 20 GB, with all my apps. I don`t use a page file, and I don`t use system restore.
> Another tip is to disable hibernation. Open a command prompt as Admin, then type powercfg -h off .

All of the large system files are on other drives, swap, hiber, et cetera...

It looks like there are tons of OS, update and applications files...
Plus some good sized logs...

If it matters, the machine has 8GB of RAM, a 128 GB SSD, 1TB hard drive and an i5 CPU.

Having a 40 GB OS is mind boggling and loosing 24 GB of storage on the c: drive seems... wrong...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Apr 2014   #17

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit

It is important t understand that the reported 16 GB in the Windows folder is actually larger than reality. This is largely due to the use of hard links. Hard links have been a part of the NTFS file system since Windows 2000 but weren't used in Windows until Vista. I won't go into the details but they allow one copy of a file to appear in multiple folders. This provides a number of important advantages, one being that it saves disk space. Windows determines the space used by a folder by going through each folder and adding up the sizes of each file. But when hard links are used that means a great deal of double counting. It is not that Windows is lying about the space used, it is that there are multiple truths, all different , and all equally valid. Determining the disk usage of a folder is actually very complex. Many arbitrary decisions must be made with no clear way to determine which is better.

Windows 7 is actually doing a great deal more than XP. It is just that much of this is not readily apparent to the user.

There are many trade offs in the design of complex software. Over the years due to changing technology the priorities have shifted. Many XP systems were installed on 20 GB hard disks and some even smaller. And that space had to be shared by all of the applications and data. Today most members of this forum would consider a 500 GB drive as rather small. This means that disk usage is less important and priorities can shift to other things.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Apr 2014   #18

Windows 7x64 Home Premium SP1

For comparison here is a snip of my OS partition.
no system restore
no hibernation
2GB pagefile.sys (it's on an SSD)
My winsxs reports 10GB which is a bit larger than normal for some reason.
Windows 7 folder is huge-os-partition.jpg

Windows disk properties reports 47.9GB.

Your issue is still a bit of a puzzle.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Apr 2014   #19
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8

25GB for more than 91 thousand files is actually a good deal, LOL.

Attached Images
Windows 7 folder is huge-2014-04-30_1958.png 
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 May 2014   #20

Windows 10 Pro 64 bit

My Windows folder was 22.5GB with over 100k files until I used Disk Cleanup a few minutes ago. First use of cleanup since re-installing everything a week ago with a new SSD. Big chunk was the Service Pack backup. Real "lean" now with less than 89k files.

Attached Images
Windows 7 folder is huge-windows-folder.png 
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Windows 7 folder is huge

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