Whenever you install an update on a PC running Windows, especially if it is a service pack, larger update or even upgrade to a new version of the operating system, you end up with leftovers that remain on the system.
They are there so that you can return the system to the old state. That is useful in the beginning as updates can be the cause of issues on the system.
We have seen quite a few security update releases in the past for instance which produced blue screens, reboots or other undesirable effects.
Those leftover files become dead weight soon thereafter though. If you have installed the updated and noticed no issues fora couple of days, weeks or even months, then you may want to consider removing them.
This is especially true on systems that don't have a lot of free disk space. Depending on the updates, you may be able to free up Gigabytes of storage on the system.
If you have upgraded a Windows PC to Windows 10, and it does not matter if you did so using the preview or will do so once the operating system gets released officially, you may be able to remove old Windows installation files from the system to free up space.
Here is what you need to do
Attention: removing system files from previous installations prevents rollbacks on the system. Make sure you have used the operating system for a while after the update before you perform the operation to reduce the chance that the update causes issues on your system. I suggest that you spend at least a week working on the system.
- Boot into the Windows 10 operating system as usual.
- Tap on the Windows-key, enter Disk Cleanup and select the result from the list that is displayed.
- Click ok on the first screen and wait for the scan to complete.
- Click on clean up system files once the window is displayed on the screen.
- Click ok again.
- Scroll down until you find previous Windows installation(s) listed there and check it.
- Check Temporary Windows installation files as well.
- You can check other items as well here to free up more.
As you can see on the screenshot above, I was able to free up 3.7 Gigabyte of storage space by running Disk Cleanup on the Windows 10 PC.
You may be able to free up more or less depending on the updates that you have installed on your Windows system. Disk Cleanup is part of all recent versions of Windows.