(1909) Can't get rid of "SystemRestore" folder on D: Drive.

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  1. Posts : 20
    Windows 10
       #1

    (1909) Can't get rid of "SystemRestore" folder on D: Drive.


    So I have had this issue for quite a while now and I thought it was going to resolve on its own but it has been a year and nothing I've done has successfully allowed me to delete this folder that I obviously do not need no more.

    The story goes like this: I had to do an emergency drive change because the boot file got corrupted (BCDBoot file) on my previous win install but I didn't want to lose my files, so Instead of re formatting my previous C: drive which is now D:, I grabbed another 180GB disk I had laying around and I plugged it into my PC and I installed win 10 on it without toching the other drive, everything was fine when it finished installing I had a new win install on C: and I just removed the Windows folder from the now D; drive, but it wouldn't let me delete a specific folder called "System Volume Information" now Im pretty sure I need this folder because it keeps "creating" files in there (Last modified on 2.5.2020) but I'm pretty sure I do not need the folder " System Restore" that is holding a bunch of outdated drivers/ windows app pacakges from 2017, I attached an image for you to see more clearly what I mean.

    This folder structure also exists on my C: drive, and its empty, as you can see the files on "system restore" on D: drive have not been modified since 3 years ago... and I cannot delete the contents of that folder, trying to delete them from Treesize Free just shows me they're being deleted but they go back to where they were .

    (1909) Can't get rid of "SystemRestore" folder on D: Drive.-disk-d.png

    I'm trying to get rid of the folder for cleanup purposes, I just want to use D: as a "data holder" now and I want to errase tracks of the previous OS, but formatting is not an option because I have almost 1Tb worth of important data there and I have nowhere else to transfer it to in the meantime I do a format.
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  2. dalchina's Avatar
    Posts : 29,996
    Win 10 Pro (1903)
       #2

    The question of not being able to delete something keeps recurring. Options:
    a. Boot to a command prompt and delete from there
    b. Boot from a live boot disk and delete it
    c. Take ownership and then delete it e.g.
    Add Take Ownership to Context Menu in Windows 10
    Change Owner of File, Folder, Drive, or Registry Key in Windows 10
    d. Install a program such as Emco Unlockit, browse to the file or folder from that and select it for deletion. I twill be deleted on restart.
    e. Boot from a Win 10 install medium, and via Repair your computer, navigate to a command prompt and delete it.
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  3. Posts : 20
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #3

    The problem is I can't normally access that folder, because its inside "System volume information"

    I tried EMCO Unlockit but the program won't even recognize the folder exists.

    Taking ownership did nothing as well, I can access the folder if I try to after taking ownership but trying to move/delete contents results in nothing happening (they just get put back in) I also tried taking ownership of files/ folders individually with the same result.

    All i'm left with is try booting from a command prompt but even so, I wouldn't know how to navigate to the System Volume Information folder from CMD , don't even know if it will be possible, but unfortunately I do not know the exact folder structure to attempt that also I never tried deleting anything from cmd.

    I tried booting with Linux and deleting the folder a while back but the files just re appear on re boot.
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  4. dalchina's Avatar
    Posts : 29,996
    Win 10 Pro (1903)
       #4

    Considering System Volume Information as such, that is normally, as I expect you know, a hidden protected folder. And for good reason. E.g. see:
    What Is the “System Volume Information” Folder, and Can I Delete It?
    => don't.

    It will always exist: the significant question may be, given the way you installed Windows with a 2nd installation in your PC, whether in some way it actually relates to the Windows installation you are using.

    You should not have had the original disk in your PC when you installed Windows.

    I suggest you try removing D: and check whether your Windows boots ok.

    You would be far better off formatting D: - copying off any data you need first.
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  5. Posts : 20
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #5

    I am just trying to delete the "AppXStaging" folder or "System Restore" folder like I said, I know System Volume Info is still used in some way because even in TreeSize free you can see the last modified date of some files being from 2020.

    How ever, the files inside the specified folder above are just residual old windows apps install files that are leftover from my win 10 install back in 2017, I'm pretty sure those are not needed and they're the ones taking up the 2gb of space, as you can see from my screenshot the files are named Office, Zume, Windows Maps, etcetera. And they're dated from 2017, these are the fiels im trying to get rid of, not the entire System Volume Information folder.

    And the machine does boot without D plugged in anyway, I'm pertty sure I tried booting without it 2/3 years ago when I performed this operation.
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  6. dalchina's Avatar
    Posts : 29,996
    Win 10 Pro (1903)
       #6

    Those are under System Restore. Have you tried reducing the space allocated to SR on D: ? Or disabling it?
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  7. Posts : 20
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #7

    dalchina said:
    Those are under System Restore. Have you tried reducing the space allocated to SR on D: ? Or disabling it?
    Interesting, should have tried this before, not exactly disabled it but I enabled it on D drive, created a restore point, and apparently the size now decreased to around 899MB from 1,4GB, but the old apps are still there and im suspecting its because I tried taking ownership of them earlier , is there a way to give the folders back to their previous owner?
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  8. dalchina's Avatar
    Posts : 29,996
    Win 10 Pro (1903)
       #8

    There is a good description here:
    How to Clean Up “System Volume Information” Folder | Windows OS Hub

    I'd prefer not to try to look at mine as to gain access to it from Windows requires changing permissions.

    Various approaches including the one I've mentioned are given, including turning off File History.

    Looking at the content, it looks more like there's a copy of folders in there that shouldn't be there at all.
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  9. IMayNeed's Avatar
    Posts : 19
    Windows 10 Pro
       #9

    As I understand, you are using D: as a system drive (You are writing system files in there, such as System Restore).
    As suggested, try booting without D:, and see the result of it.
    If cannot, or do not want to, try to stop writing System Files there.

    From my previous experience with certain Windows versions, Windows may also write certain information (installation, uninstallation, etc.) to the last detected drive. (Meaning if you had an E:, you could have seen some folders there too).

    As long as you are writing System Files there, those folders may appear.

    Another way is booting in safe mode and trying from there.
    At worst, simply put it in another computer, and delete from there.
    If you know somebody with a Linux system, you or the person can easily delete anything (again by being owner) on a drive.
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  10. Bree's Avatar
    Posts : 18,694
    10 Home x64 (20H2) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       #10

    dalchina said:
    I'd prefer not to try to look at mine as to gain access to it from Windows requires changing permissions.

    You can safely look inside with TreeSize Free run as administrator. No permissions need to be changed.
    ...Looking at the content, it looks more like there's a copy of folders in there that shouldn't be there at all.

    I once had an enormous AppXStaging folder
    in the C: drive's System Volume Information folder, about 9GB. I deleted that from an Advanced Start up Command prompt. That was over two years ago, it did not return and deleting it has not yet caused any issues.
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