Old Windows 10 Files


  1. Posts : 26
    Window 10 Professional 64
       #1

    Old Windows 10 Files


    I have a few computers, all of which are running various builds of Windows 10 Pro. One of them, running 1709-16299.431, has three old version files; Windows.old, Windows.old.000 and Windows.old.001. All of these are more than four months old, negating the notion that they will go away by themselves given time. Can someone give me a straight answer as to how I delete, or otherwise lose, these files? It’s a tight drive and frankly, I need the space. I’ve tried every published suggestion to no avail.
    Thanks.

    JLOB
      My Computers

  2. AndreTen's Avatar
    Posts : 23,321
    Windows 10 (Pro and Insider Pro)
       #2

    Tenforums Tutorials | Delete Windows.old Folder in Windows 10

    I would start with "disk cleanup" method, and if that doesn't work, try with other options.

    Think option 3 is the quickest (assuming windows.old is on C:) :

    Code:
    RD /S /Q "C:\Windows.old"
    Last edited by AndreTen; 06 Oct 2018 at 12:31.
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  3. cereberus's Avatar
    Posts : 12,013
    Windows10
       #3

    An easy way is to boot from Macrium Reflect Rescure drive, or a live linux drive to delete them.
      My Computer


  4. Posts : 376
    Window 10
       #4

    I used the Disk Cleanup tool (Clean up system files). It cleaned up the old installation files but left a zero byte file that cannot be found when attempting to delete the folder. It is C:\Windows.old\Users\(my user name)\AppData\Local\Packages\Microsoft.Windows.Cortana_cw5n1h2txyewy. Any advise?
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  5. dalchina's Avatar
    Posts : 29,978
    Win 10 Pro (1903)
       #5

    Delete without Windows running. You could boot to a command prompt, or follow post #3 for example.
    Last edited by dalchina; 06 Oct 2018 at 14:37.
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  6. Posts : 376
    Window 10
       #6

    Deleting after booting into a command prompt did not work. The same file not be found error resulted.

    However, I tried Option 2 of the "Windows 10: Delete Windows.old Folder in Windows 10 " tutorial and in an elevated command window I ran the following commands. The file was removed after the last step even though step 2 failed.

    takeown /F "C:\Windows.old" /A /R /D (THIS STEP WAS SUCCESSFUL, NO ERROR)
    icacls "C:\Windows.old" /grant *S-1-5-32-544:F /T /C /Q (THIS STEP FAILED WITH A FILE NOT FOUND ERROR)
    RD /S /Q "C:\Windows.old" (THIS STEP WAS SUCCESSFUL, NO ERROR)

    (Problem solved for my situation.)
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  7. Posts : 26
    Window 10 Professional 64
    Thread Starter
       #7

    Cleaner never gave me the "Clean old Windows files" option, so THAT didn't work. Option two, via the elevated command prompt DID clear the "windows.old" directory, but did nothing for the "Windows.old.000" or the "Windows.old.001" files. I DID solve my problem through a 'brute force' method - I backed up my drive using, Acronis True Image, but excluded the problem directories. I took the resulting backup and reloaded the problem drive. It worked well, but threre's GOTTA be another way!
    Thanks for all the advice.
    JLOB
      My Computers

  8. Ztruker's Avatar
    Posts : 13,511
    Windows 10 Pro X64 20H4 19042.746
       #8

    There is, it was given to you by cereberus in post #3. I'll add one more option. Download Kyhi's rescue disc and create a bootable USB flash drive. It use WinPE which is Windows 10 based so familiar and easy to use. It would allow you to delete them.

    See here: Windows 10 Recovery Tools - Bootable Rescue Disk from KYHI
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