Increase disk space, how to do it?

Increase disk space, how to do it?

Nowadays most of us use aSSD drive which hosts the operating system. Using a solid state drive, Windows loads much faster than traditional hard drives and the system feels really snappy. SSDs once didn’t come cheap, so many of us today find ourselves with storage drives that can barely hold operating system files and installed applications. How to do it, then, for increase disk space and free up some memory when free space starts to run out?

Let’s say right away that the term “disk” in the case of SSD drives should never be used. SSD drives do not contain physical disks that spin. Instead, they use chips Flash memory to store data. The use of the term “disk” could create confusion, as it suggests a similarity with hard disks which instead rely on the use of magnetic platters and moving mechanical parts (think of the heads that read and write data).

When it Disk space is running lowWindows displays a warning message and, by accessing the window Computer, This PC o Computer resources (depending on the version of the operating system…) colors the small box red which highlights the space still available. What to do when you find yourself with a C disk full and, therefore, the unit containing the operating system was now saturated?

Migrate to a larger SSD

The most obvious solution is to switch to an SSD of greater capacity. This can be done with historical utility Macrium Reflect, which unfortunately in the free version is no longer updated or supported but continues to work perfectly. Either to move from a hard disk to an SSD, or to migrate from a solid state drive to a larger SSD. Macrium Reflect Free continues to be available for free, at least at the time of writing this article, by clicking on this link.

There are many programs that can be used as alternatives. However, for those who have no problem using a utility from command lineyou can copy Windows to SSD without paid programs using dd and Linux.

Increase disk space: add a hard disk

Regardless of whether you use a hard disk or a modern, fast SSD drive, you may suddenly realize that you have run out of space.

Let’s say right away that, especially if you use an SSD as your main drive (the drive where the operating system is installed), you should not save documents and personal files on it. Although the cost to gigabyte of SSDs is significantly lower than it used to be, modern hard drives can offer vastly greater capacity at a fraction of the cost.

The advice, if an SSD unit is used, is therefore to add a traditional hard disk and store personal documents and files on it (making sure to adopt an effective backup policy). In general, the SSD should only contain the operating system and applications: the speed performance they will be excellent.

Per increase space on disk C:, or in the partition that contains the operating system, an excellent solution is therefore to add a second disk. The secondary hard disk will join the SSD or the hard disk used as the main drive. Once you have connected and prepared the second hard drive, you can simply do it move documents e personal files from the main unit to the newly connected one.

Move personal files to the second hard drive

Personal files are usually contained in system folders Documents, Downloads, Images, Videos, Music and so on. Typing Windows+R Therefore %userprofile% you will be able to conveniently access the contents of the various folders and move them to the secondary hard disk.

Using an account with administrator privileges, pressing Windows+R therefore writing C:\Usersyou can check the data of other users contained in their respective system folders.

When the message appears You do not have permission to access the folderjust click the button Continues.

Move system folders Documents, Downloads, Images,…

To avoid having to carry out the work manually, it is good to keep in mind that Windows – in itself – allows you to move the Documents, Downloads, Pictures, Videos, Music,…and all their contents on another partition or disk drive.

To proceed, just follow the instructions in the article Move documents and downloads folder to another disk.

Repositioning folders using other methods can be dangerous: the one illustrated in the article, however, is simple and effective because it uses a feature integrated into Windows.

Windows 10 and Windows 11 then offer an additional possibility that allows you to specify the predefined locations for storing new files and documents: just type Storage in the operating system search box, click Advanced storage settings so up Saving path for new content (Windows 11) oppure Change save location for new content (Windows 10).

Increase disk space, how to do it?

Increase disk space by performing cleanup operations

Relocate the contents of the system folders Documents, Downloads, Images and so on, it will allow you to recover a lot of space on the main disk or in any case in the partition that hosts the operating system.

If you’re stuck in water, one of the first things we recommend is to clean your throat temporary files folder. Files and folders created temporarily by the operating system and the applications that are gradually executed are crowded here. All these programs often create contents in the temporary folder and then forget to delete them. The result is that the amount of data contained in the temporary folder grows dramatically over time.

Then type cmd in the Windows search box then choose Run as administrator. At the command prompt, write the following:

rd %temp% /s /q

Don’t worry about mistakes Access denied possibly presented by Windows. They are generally temporary files listed as still in use that are okay not to remove. The intervention, however, could allow us to recover several gigabytes of space.

Use Microsoft Disk Cleanup, WinDirStat, and DiskBoss utilities

You can increase the space available on the disk by performing acleaning operation more careful. The most immediate tool to use is Cleaning disk, integrated into every version of Windows. It can be called up simply by typing Cleaning disk in the operating system search box.

After choosing C: in the dialog box Unit selectionyou must click OK then the button Cleaning system files at the bottom left (requires administrator rights).

Drive C Disk Space: Windows

In another article we saw whether it is possible to delete everything proposed by Disk Cleanup. Usually there are no big problems, except for the fact that you could deprive yourself of the possibility of restoring a previous version of Windows (for example if you had recently installed a new feature update or the migration from Windows 10 to Windows 11 was completed…). Furthermore, some objects tend to be automatically recreated at the operating system level.

The Storage window in Windows 10 and Windows 11

Typing Storage settings in the search box of Windows 10 and 11 a window opens showing, in broad terms, the distribution of the disk space.

The operating system classifies the various elements to be managed in some macro areas such as Apps and features (Installed apps in Windows 11), Desktop, Temporary files e Other.

If a cleaning action had already been carried out using Cleaning diskthe section Temporary files it will presumably be almost empty. With one click Apps and features you have the possibility to quickly access the list of installed applications. Here the simple suggestion is to click on the drop-down menu Sort by so up Dimensions. By doing so, i are obtained first programs that take up more space your disk.

Windows Storage Settings

Check the applications you don’t know, the ones you don’t need, the space they take up and then evaluate them uninstallation.

With one click your Other others can be identified heavy folders: you can…

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