First look at Windows 10's new DiskUsage analysis tool

Martin Brinkmann
Dec 16, 2020
Windows, Windows 10

DiskUsage is a new command line tool that Microsoft added to Insider Builds of the company's Windows 10 operating system without much fanfare. The tool, located in System32, provides users with information on files when run, e.g. to analyze hard drive or partition space.

The program is still in development and some of its parameters and features don't work correctly at the time of writing.

The tool's full path is C:\Windows\System32\diskusage.exe, and you can simply run it using a command prompt or a PowerShell terminal. Note that you need to run an elevated prompt for the tool to work correctly.

Use the /? parameter to display all available options, e.g. diskuage /?. Since it is located in system32, it is picked up automatically even without providing the tool's full path.

Here is the full output as it stands:

C:\WINDOWS\system32>diskusage /?
DiskUsage - Disk Usage

Description: Summarize disk usage recursively for the given directory.
Usage : diskusage [Options] [Directory]
Options :
/a, /systemAndReserve displays size for system files and reserved space
/c, /csv displays in csv format
/d, /maxDepth=N displays directory information only if it is N or
fewer levels below command line argument
/e, /minFileSize=SIZE displays directory information only if its FileSize
is greater or equal than SIZE
/f, /minSizeOnDisk=SIZE displays directory information only if its SizeOnDisk
is greater or equal than SIZE
/g, /displayFlag=FLAG specifies the flags value to determin which column(s) to display
column value description
SizeOnDisk 0x001 the on disk size
FileSize 0x002 the end of file size
SizePerDir 0x004 sum of SizeOnDisk for top level child
Files 0x008 number of child files
ChildDirs 0x010 number of child directories
FilesPerDir 0x020 number of top level child files
DirsPerDir 0x040 number of top level child directories
CreationTime 0x080 file creation timestamp
LastAccessTime 0x100 file last access timestamp
LastWriteTime 0x200 file last write timestamp
Attributes 0x400 file attributes
/h, /humanReadable displays size in human readable format
/i, /iniFile=FILE takes all the parameters from an INI file.
NOTE: SCENARIO name must be speificed via /j (/scenario)
/j, /secnario=SCENARIO specifies the scenario name for the INI file
/l, /allLinks count all hardlinks separately (By default, files with multiple
hardlinks are counted only once towards the first link name)
/m, /multipleName count only files with more than one link names
/n, /nameFilter=FILTER count only files whose name matches the name filter
/p, /preferredPath=PATH count files with multiple link names towards the first link that's
under PATH if it exists
NOTE: This options must not be specified togerther
with /l (/allLinks)
/q, /virtual recurse into virtual directories
/r, /skipReparse skip recursing into reparse directories
/s, /skipResurse skip recursing into child directories when calculating sizes
/t, /TopDirectory=N displays Top N directories by SizeOnDisk in descending order
/u, /TopFile=N displays Top N files by SizeOnDisk in descending order
/v, /verbose displays verbose error information
/x, /clearDefault do not display the default selected columns

The main purpose of DiskUsage is to return files or folders based on sizes. Parameters like minFileSize ir minSizeOnDisk return files that are larger than the specified size, TopFile returns the top X files of a directory using SizeOnDisk, and TopDirectory does the same for directories.

Output customization is supported, use displayFlag to specify the columns that you want the program to display, /csv to display the data in CSV format, or /h to display file sizes in human readable format.

Here are a few example commands (size needs to be entered in bytes):


If you run diskusage without any parameters, it returns information about all files and folders of system32 including disk space information of folders.

diskusage /e=1073741824 c:\users\USERNAME\downloads

The command returns all files of the downloads folder that are larger than 1 Gigabyte.

Closing Words

DiskUsage is a specialized tool and most Windows users may prefer to use disk space analyzers such as WizTree or TreeSize Free instead. Still, administrators may find it useful to analyze disk space from terminal windows. One of the main advantages of DiskUsage is that it supports configuration files to run certain commands regularly.

Now You: do you analyze the disk usage of your devices? (via BleepingComputer)

First look at Windows 10's new DiskUsage analysis tool
Article Name
First look at Windows 10's new DiskUsage analysis tool
DiskUsage is a new command line tool that Microsoft added to Insider Builds of the company's Windows 10 operating system without much fanfare.
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  1. Dan Donx said on January 15, 2023 at 10:29 am

    What mental age of reader are you targeting with the first sentence? 10?

    Why not write an article on how to *avoid* upgrading from W10 to W11. Analogous to those like me who avoided upgrading from 7 to 10 for as long as possible.

    If your paymaster Microsoft permits it, of course.

  2. Dexter said on January 15, 2023 at 11:14 am

    5. Rufus
    6. Ventoy

    PS. I hate reading these “SEO optimized” articles.

    1. cdr said on January 15, 2023 at 3:32 pm

      I used Rufus to create an installer for a 6th gen intel i5 that had MBR. It upgraded using Setup. No issues except for Win 11 always prompting me to replace my local account. Still using Win 10 Pro on all my other PCs to avoid the bullying.

  3. sv said on January 15, 2023 at 6:40 pm

    bit pointless to upgrade for the sake of upgrading as you never know when you’ll get locked out because ms might suddenly not provide updates to unsupported systems.

    ps…. time travelling?
    written. Jan 15, 2023
    Updated • Jan 13, 2023

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on January 16, 2023 at 5:49 am

      This happens when you schedule a post in WordPress and update it before setting the publication date.

  4. Anonymous said on January 16, 2023 at 8:24 am

    Anyone willing to downgrade to this awful OS must like inflicting themselves with harm.

  5. basingstoke said on January 16, 2023 at 11:18 am

    I have become convinced now that anybody who has no qualms with using Windows 11/10 must fit into one of the following brackets:

    1) Too young to remember a time before W10 and W11 (doesn’t know better)

    2) Wants to play the latest games on their PC above anything else (or deeply needs some software which already dropped W7 support)

    3) Doesn’t know too much about how computers work, worried that they’d be absolutely lost and in trouble without the “”latest security””

    4) Microsoft apologist that tries to justify that the latest “features” and “changes” are actually a good thing, that improve Windows

    5) Uses their computer to do a bare minimum of like 3 different things, browse web, check emails, etc, so really doesn’t fuss

    Obviously that doesn’t cover everyone, there’s also the category that:

    6) Actually liked W7 more than 10, and held out as long as possible before switching, begrudgingly uses 10 now

    Have I missed any group off this list?

    1. Heinz Strunk said on September 19, 2023 at 3:57 pm

      You have missed in this group just about any professional user that uses business software like CAD programs or ERP Programs which are 99% of all professional users from this list.

      Linux doesn’t help anyone who is not a linux kid and apple is just a fancy facebook machine.

  6. ilev said on August 24, 2023 at 7:34 pm

    Microsoft has removed KB5029351 update

    1. EP said on August 24, 2023 at 9:21 pm

      only from windows update though
      KB5029351 is still available from the ms update catalog site

  7. Anonymous said on August 24, 2023 at 11:05 pm

    1. This update is labaled as PREVIEW if it causes issues to unintelligent people, then they shouldn’t have allowed Preview updates ot install.

    2. I have installed it in a 11 years old computer, and no problems at all.

    3. Making a big drama over a bluescreen for an updated labeled as preview is ridiculous.

    This is probably another BS internet drama where people ran programs and scripts that modified the registry until they broke Windows, just for removing stuff that they weren’t even using just for the sake of it.
    Maybe people should stop playing geeks and actually either use Windows 10 or Windows 11, but don’t try to modify things just for the sake of it.

    Sometimes removing or stopping things (like defender is a perfect example) only need intelligence, not scripts or 3rd party programs that might mess with windows.

  8. john said on August 24, 2023 at 11:17 pm

    Windows 11 was a pointless release, it was just created because some of the Windows team wanted to boost sales with some sort of new and improved Windows 10. Instead, Microsoft cannot support one version well let alone two.

    1. John G. said on August 25, 2023 at 12:08 pm

      Windows 11 is the worst ugly shame by Microsoft ever. They should release with every new W11 version a complete free version of Starallback inside just to make this sh** OS functionally again.

  9. EP said on August 25, 2023 at 3:10 pm

    motherboard maker MSI has recently released a statement regarding the “unsupported processor” blue screen error for their boards using Intel 600/700 series chipsets & to avoid the KB5029351 Win11 update:–UNSUPPORTED-PROCESSOR–Error-Message-of-Windows-11-Update-KB5029351-Preview-142215

  10. EP said on August 29, 2023 at 7:32 pm

    check out the following recent articles:

    Neowin – Microsoft puts little blame on its Windows update after UNSUPPORTED PROCESSOR BSOD bug:

    BleepingComputer – Microsoft blames ‘unsupported processor’ blue screens on OEM vendors:

  11. Leonard Britvolli said on August 30, 2023 at 10:33 pm

    While there may be changes or updates to the Windows 10 Store for Business and Education in the future, it is premature to conclude that it will be discontinued based solely on rumors.

  12. sembrador said on September 5, 2023 at 9:32 pm

    My advice, I left win 15 years ago. Now I’m a happy linux user (linuxmint) but there is Centos, Fedora, Ubuntu depending on your needs.

  13. EP said on September 6, 2023 at 11:55 am

    motherboard maker MSI has recently released new BIOS/firmware updates for their Intel 600 & 700 series motherboards to fix the “UNSUPPORTED_PROCESSOR” problem (Sept. 6):–UNSUPPORTED-PROCESSOR–caused-BSOD-on-MSI-s-Intel-700-and-600-Series-Motherboards-142277

  14. Raphael Benzo said on September 24, 2023 at 9:52 pm

    I try to disable the Diagnostics Tracking Service (Connected Devices Platform User Services) but it wont let me disable it, any help will be greatly appreciated.
    Tank you for your help

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