If you’re running Windows 10 on a PC with a low capacity SSD as your system drive, you want to eke out as much space as possible. In previous versions of Windows, if your local drive was running low on space, you would need to use the Disk Cleanup utility. Also, you could manually delete temp files, or, move large files to an external drive or network location. Luckily, keeping your drive clean is going to get a lot easier.
Microsoft has added a new feature in Windows 10 Creators Update (starting with build 15014) that lets you set Windows to automatically delete temp files and items older than 30 days sitting in the Recycle Bin with Storage Sense.
Note: At the time of this writing, the Storage Sense feature is only available in the Windows 10 Insider Preview builds. However, it will be available to everyone when the final stable version of Creators Update is rolled out to everyone; expected this March.
Automatically Free Up Disk Space
- Open Settings and head to System > Storage and toggle the Storage Sense switch to On (it’s turned off by default).
- To tweak which files are deleted, click the Change how we free up space Then you can set it to delete temp files but not the Recycle Bin or vice versa. Here you can also click Clean now to clean temp files and files older than 30 days in the Recycle Bin.
- Storage Sense will keep track of how much space has been cleaned up each month and you can see that at the top of the screen. In the example below I ran Clean now and it freed up 4.58 GB of disk space.
It’s also worth mentioning that you can reclaim disk space in Windows 10 using the Settings app.
If you’re running an old version of Windows, you can get similar results by creating a scheduled task to run Disk Cleanup automatically. It works with Vista, Windows 7 and Windows 8.
What steps do you take to gain as much local disk space as possible? Leave a comment below and let us know.