Storage space is very important specially if you are using a Solid State Drive. That’s why we need to remove unnecessary files as much as possible just to make room for more active files. If you have recently updated to Windows 8.1 from Windows 8, you will notice a Windows.old folder in your drive, right next to Windows. You will also get the same result if you reinstall Windows 7/8 over an existing Windows. But the difference is, when updating from Windows 8 to Windows 8.1, you cannot easily delete the Windows.old folder by simple hitting delete or dragging it to the recycle bin. Today, I’ll show you an easy step on how you can delete the Windows.old folder after updating to Windows 8.1.
How to Delete Windows.old Folder in Windows 8.1
When you open your Drive C (or the main drive where your operating system is installed) via My Computer / This PC, you will noticed that there is a folder named Windows.old. This will appear if you have updated from Windows 8 to 8.1. You can’t easily delete this folder like the usual way of deleting a file or a folder. This is also a protection for you. Why? Because the Windows.old folder contains your old files, data or documents from Windows 8. So before deleting this folder, make sure you have transferred all your files from the old folders to your new Windows 8.1 folders. After you are 100% sure that all files in the Windows.old folder are safe to delete, proceed below.
WARNING: Again before deleting the Windows.old folder, make sure you have copied or backup all your files and data from the Windows.old folder. This step is irreversible and you may no longer be able to recover deleted files.
To delete the Windows.old folder in Windows 8.1, open “This PC” or “My Computer” then open Drive C or the main drive where you installed Windows 8.1. You should be seeing the Windows.old folder. From there right click on any blank space in the window and choose Properties. You should be seeing a similar Window and dialogue box below.
In the Properties, click the Disk Cleanup button under the General Tab. The Disk Cleanup dialogue box will appear (see image above). You will not see the Window.old folder from the list. From there, hit the “Clean up system files” button. It will reload the Disk Cleanup dialogue box, this time with more items and options. You should be seeing a dialogue box similar to the image below.
From the new Disk Cleanup box, scroll and locate the “Previous Windows installation(s)” item. As you can see from our example, it has occupied 5.31GB of storage space, and that’s already huge considering that I am using only a 128GB SSD capacity. Make sure you have selected or checked the “Previous Windows Installation(s)” items. At this point you can also include other items as well. Just make sure you know what you are about to delete.
After that, hit the OK button. A confirmation will appear asking you if you are sure that you want to permanently delete the files that you have selected. Hit the Delete Files button to proceed. It will start to clean your drive and delete all the files that you have selected. Depending on the speed of your drive and the number of items you have selected or your size, you might need to wait for a couple of minutes before the process is finished.
Once finished, you will see that the Windows.old folder in no longer in your Drive (or in your recycle bin). That’s it! You have successfully freed some space on your drive.
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