Have you ever experienced that after upgrading the operating system of the seventh or eighth modification to the tenth version, or when installing the latest updated assemblies of the “dozens” itself, an impressive folder called Windows.old was found in the system partition (on drive C) ? Why it is needed, some users do not know, not to mention how you can get rid of it as unnecessary. Let's look at several basic methods that allow you to delete the Windows.old folder in Win 10, and also deal with the purpose of the directory you are looking for and the consequences of such actions.
What is the Windows.old object and what is it for?
Speaking about the main role assigned to the described directory in Windows 10, it should immediately be noted that this folder stores files of past systems and assemblies, designed so that the user can easily return to the previous systemby doing a rollback. This applies equally to those cases when you upgraded an existing OS of the seventh or eighth version to the tenth (and did not perform a clean installation), and to situations when upgrades in the form of updated assemblies were installed for the "ten" itself (all kinds of packages Redstone, April Update, October Update, etc.).
However, few people realize that when switching from Windows 10 to the same "seven" (downgrade), the files of the tenth version of the system are also placed in the Windows.old directory during reinstallation (in case that Windows can already be restored ten). But the folder size is very large, so users are starting to think about deleting the Windows.old folder in Windows 10 or in similar operating systems of a lower rank. The methods proposed below are quite simple and can be used by users of any skill level. In addition to considering them, at the end we will try to decide which method is optimal and most effective. In the meantime, let's think about what such actions can lead to.
Consequences of deleting a directory
Is it possible to get rid of this directory without affecting performance? Yes, you can delete Windows.old in Windows 10, but only on the condition that you do not plan to return to previous modifications and builds at all. It is clear that if this directory is deleted, the return will become impossible in principle. Some try to copy it to removable media (just in case, so to speak), so that at any time you can return it to its place in the system partition. But here it is importantunderstand that such actions always turn out to be absolutely ineffectual.
How to uninstall Windows.old in Windows 10: options
With an understanding of the purpose of the directory and the consequences of deleting it, I think everything is clear so far. Now let's go directly to the ways to get rid of this directory. Keep in mind that manually deleting the Windows.old folder in Windows 10 and similar systems will not work, since such actions are strictly prohibited in the OS itself. However, as the simplest methods that can be used in case of need, consider the following:
- standard system partition cleaning;
- remove directory via storage (hard disk) settings;
- two ways using the command line;
- acceleration of the automatic removal process in the "Task Scheduler";
- delete with preliminary disabling of blocking descriptors.
How to remove Windows.old on "Windows 10": standard disk cleanup
As the first and easiest method, ordinary users can be offered to use the Disk Cleanup tool, which is available in any Windows system. You can call it either through the properties of the section, or from the "Run" console by entering the command cleanmgr.
But in the window, unlike the standard procedure, you must additionally press the button to clean up system files, and in the list, whichwill appear at the end of the scan, mark the item to delete the files of the previous system. If you use the second technique to access the cleaner, you will need to double-select the partition on which you want to perform this operation.
Using storage options
Also simply deleting the Windows.old folder in Windows 10 can be done using the settings available for storage in the options menu called up by pressing the start button.
Here you need to go to the system section, then select the device memory item on the left, and call the available options on the right by clicking on the link to immediately free up space.
Next in the list, simply check the box for previous Windows installations and confirm the deletion of objects.
Remove a directory from the command console: method one
A more advanced method is to delete the Windows.old folder in Windows 10 using command line tools. In this case, you can use two options.
The first way is to run the console as an administrator and then run the command shown in the image above. You can go a longer way, alternately executing the lines shown in the following picture.
Using the command line: the second way
The second method of using command line tools is not much different from the previous one, but to access the console itself, you need to use special boot options with a navigation through the troubleshooting menu.
After starting the command line, you will need to determine the letter of the system partition using the DISKPART toolkit for this, and only after that execute the deletion commands that were shown in the previous example. It is believed that this method is the most effective, since the system is not fully loaded at the moment, and the desired directory to be deleted is not blocked.
In the case of upgrading the system to "tens", by and large, deleting the Windows.old folder in Windows 10 can not be de alt with at all, because after ten days (it used to be thirty) it will be deleted automatically. However, if for some reason you want to speed up the execution of this process, you can call the "Task Scheduler" (taskschd.msc), use the "Scheduler" libraries, go to the Setup directory through the Microsoft and Windows sections, open the SetupCleanupTask subfolder, double click to edit options, and then change the cleaning date to a closer one.
Note: this method does not always work, because after the appointed time has passed, the Scheduler itself may not contain sections responsible for setting and changing the corresponding parameters.
Finally, if it comes to that, getting rid of the ill-fated directory can be even easier. To do this, you need to install the Unlocker utility, which integrates its own command into the Explorer context menu, then call it via RMB on the directory you are looking for, and select deletion as the final action in the list. But this method, although it looks simple, nevertheless has one significant drawback related to the fact that after deleting the directory, you will need to clean the system registry yourself. To automate this process, you can use special programs like CCleaner, RegCleaner, ASC and their analogues.
Which method is better and easier?
If you give advice on the use of the proposed methods, the most simple can be called the use of standard tools for cleaning the system partition. If, for some reason, a positive result cannot be achieved with their use, use the command line. As mentioned above, when you call it through advanced boot options, you will get one hundred percent guaranteed removal of an unnecessary directory. But do not forget that you can not even dream of any return to previous systems and assemblies after this.