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  1.    11 Oct 2016 #1
    Join Date : Oct 2015
    Posts : 8
    Windows 10

    Windows Update Clean-up files 3.99TB


    Windows 10 just installed the latest update. It did take a little longer than usual to restart.

    I went to do a clean-up and backup before shutting down for the night and it claims I have 3.99TB of old Windows Update files. The fact I only have a 500gb SSD drive, I find that impossible. Anyway, I did the clean-up which took almost 15 minutes to complete.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    So where did Windows manage to put the 3.99TB files? Where are my Windows backup files stored so I can take a look to see what is in the folder?
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  2.    11 Oct 2016 #2
    Join Date : Aug 2016
    S/E England
    Posts : 4,523
    10 Home x64 (1709) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)

    The folder is WinSxS and the apparently impossible size (unless you actually do have a >4TB HDD) is due to hard links.

    A hard link is a file system object that lets two files refer to the same location on disk. Some tools, such as the File Explorer, determine the size of directories without taking into account that the contained files might be hard linked. This might lead you to think that the WinSxS folder takes up more disk space than it really does.
    https://technet.microsoft.com/en-GB/.../dn251566.aspx

    Apparently Disk Clean-up is another of those tools that doesn't check for hard links when calculating sizes. It is safe to continue and let Disk Clean-up delete these files because the actual physical copy of the file only gets deleted when the last of its hard links is deleted.

    PS: don't forget to restart your PC. Disk Clean-up really means it when it says "(you might need to restart your computer.)" for the Windows Update Clean-up. It won't prompt you for a restart, but you will more than likely see the blue 'Windows is configuring uppdates' screens and followed by a lengthy 'Cleaning up...' screen when you shut down, Only then is the clean up complete.
    Last edited by Bree; 11 Oct 2016 at 17:43. Reason: PS:
      My ComputersSystem Spec
  3.    11 Oct 2016 #3
    Join Date : Jul 2015
    Posts : 419
    Windows 10 Pro 64bit v1709 build 16299.15

    It is okay, just run drive clean up and check system with sfc /scannow run command after. This clean yields back about 1.xx gb.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  4.    11 Oct 2016 #4
    Join Date : Oct 2015
    Posts : 8
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter

    Many thanks for the really detailed explanation. I will ensure I restart directly after the cleanup. I've noticed in the past that Win10 shows the 'Windows is configuring uppdates' after a restart and disk cleanup. I always assumed this was a glitch of Win10. I had manually pressed the on/off button in the past to bypass it. I will leave it to 'do its thing' in future.

    Thanks again both of you.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  5.    11 Oct 2016 #5
    Join Date : Aug 2016
    S/E England
    Posts : 4,523
    10 Home x64 (1709) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)

    Quote Originally Posted by thecaretaker View Post
    I've noticed in the past that Win10 shows the 'Windows is configuring uppdates' after a restart and disk cleanup. I always assumed this was a glitch of Win10..
    I assume that, as with an update, some files are in use and can only be removed when no longer open - ie. during a restart.
      My ComputersSystem Spec
  6.    12 Oct 2016 #6

    Thanks, Bree for the explanation and resource. It provided the inspiration for my blog post today. You rock!
    --Ed--
      My ComputersSystem Spec
  7.    12 Oct 2016 #7
    Join Date : Sep 2016
    Posts : 176
    Windows 10

    Out of curiosity I have just checked mine... 1.3GB must be lucky Lol

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      My ComputerSystem Spec
  8.    14 Jan 2017 #8
    Join Date : Jan 2017
    Posts : 3
    Windows 10

    Same issue


    I am having the same issue (3.99 TB to delete) guys with such a tiny HP laptop 29gb memory hard drive. After an hour is still ''Cleaning up''. Any ideas how to complete the process? Many Thanks in advance

    Quote Originally Posted by Bree View Post
    The folder is WinSxS and the apparently impossible size (unless you actually do have a >4TB HDD) is due to hard links.


    Determine the Actual Size of the WinSxS Folder

    Apparently Disk Clean-up is another of those tools that doesn't check for hard links when calculating sizes. It is safe to continue and let Disk Clean-up delete these files because the actual physical copy of the file only gets deleted when the last of its hard links is deleted.

    PS: don't forget to restart your PC. Disk Clean-up really means it when it says "(you might need to restart your computer.)" for the Windows Update Clean-up. It won't prompt you for a restart, but you will more than likely see the blue 'Windows is configuring uppdates' screens and followed by a lengthy 'Cleaning up...' screen when you shut down, Only then is the clean up complete.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  9.    14 Jan 2017 #9
    Join Date : Jan 2017
    Posts : 3
    Windows 10

    I am having the same issue (3.99 TB to delete) guys with such a tiny HP laptop 29gb memory hard drive. After an hour is still ''Cleaning up''. Any ideas how to complete the process? Many Thanks in advance
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  10.    14 Jan 2017 #10
    Join Date : Sep 2015
    Staffordshire
    Posts : 364
    Windows 10 Pro

    3.9TB on one PC, Zero on the one I have set on metered connection, which I did update by checking for updates and downloading now and installing.
      My ComputersSystem Spec

 
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