Windows 10: Automatic maintenance and windows.old

  1.    05 Nov 2017 #1

    Automatic maintenance and windows.old


    I know windows.old can be purged by the user but I am curious about how often disk clean up runs as part of automatic maintenance. After the upgrade to fall creators both our machines were left with sizeable 20 odd gigs of windows.old

    i left it about ten days and then gave both machines I decent amount of idle time. Sure enough the daily auto maintenance kicked in and deleted most of the windows.old contents. But on both machines windows.old still exists, albeit much smaller in size. I seem to remember this happening after other feature updates. Basically first time round most of the file gets deleted but leaves remnants and then sometime after the whole folder disappears as auto maintenance clicks into gear again. However, having had auto maintenance recover most of the space from windows.old back on 30 Oct I tonight switched on, did a few tasks and then gave about thirty mins idle time. Looking at the cpu meter (8 gadgets) auto maintenance certainly seemed to kick in but windows.old was untouched. So it still remains making me wonder whether disk clean up part of auto maintenance is not necessarily a daily task?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2.    05 Nov 2017 #2

    You can run diskclean and after first scan select system files to remove it your self it normally waits about 30 days before it removes it as its used for the option to role back if needed
      My ComputerSystem Spec


  3. Posts : 7,690
    10 Home x64 (1803) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       05 Nov 2017 #3

    Samuria said: View Post
    ...it normally waits about 30 days before it removes it ...
    @Samuria, it was 30 days in 1507 and 1511. For the Anniversary Update 1607 and all subsequent versions, Microsoft reduced it to 10 days. Apparently their telemetry told them that those who were going to switch back invariably did so in the first week.

    Microsoft said... "Based on our user research, we noticed most users who choose to go back to a previous version of Windows do it within the first several days," a spokesman said in an email. "As such, we changed the setting to 10 days to free storage space used by previous copies."
    https://www.computerworld.com/articl...ce-period.html
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  4.    06 Nov 2017 #4

    Yes, I know I can run disk cleanup myself. I was just curious as to how things went under automatic maintenance. It seems odd that auto maintenance deleted much of the windows.old content but left the folder behind. On one machine it’s still just over 1 gig in size. It’s happenend before and seems auto maintenance needs a couple of run throughs before it the system completely purges windows.old on its own. So I was a bit miffed that having left both systems idle yesterday they didn’t purge the remaining windows.old contents. Perhaps disk clean up runs weekly as part of the auto maintenances varied tasks ?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5.    06 Nov 2017 #5

    There are also times when Windows, for whatever reason, mislabels some drivers in Windows.old as being in use and refuses to delete it completely altogether until the user takes their own initiative to delete it.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  6.    06 Nov 2017 #6

    Ah ok, that makes possible sense. Say a user didn't know about disk clean up or just couldn't be bothered to delete the windows.old remnants and just leave the folder there. Would the presence of windows.old cause problems further down the line? For example, the next feature update a few months down the line. Presumably the installation of it would try to generate a new windows.old. Is the system going to throw a strop because an older windows.old is already there?

    Thanks
    Wayne
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  7.    06 Nov 2017 #7

    I think the next major update/upgrade would just add to the existing windows.old.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


 

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