unnecessary files Windows XP

By hpsundance ·
We are trying to extend the life of a laptop that has only 6 gig of hard drive. The Windows folder eats up over 3 gig of that.

I have deleted .tmp and .bak files, was only a meg or two. I have seen old articles online about what folders and file types we can delete, but the articles were old, and not sure if they still apply.

They suggest, such as $xxx$ files can be deleted. it also suggests deleting the contents of several i386 files but not the folder.

So, what do you recommend that I can safely delete from windows to extend the life of this laptop?

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Which version of Windows?

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to unnecessary files Windows ...

Different versions of Windows have different requirements.

You can clean out all of the Temp Folders with Advanced Windows Care available here to download


As for deleting files in the I 386 Folder this is used if new hardware needs to be installed so if you delete things here it is likely to affect your ability latter on. The same applies in XP at least to the Folders Created at the Root of the HDD when you install a Service Pack. They may not be necessary for general use but when they are required your stuck without them being there.


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by hpsundance In reply to Which version of Windows?

xp professional

I am not familiar with these cleaner programs, but have read in some forums about problems after using them.

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Add/Remove Programs

by LarryD4 In reply to version

If you go in to the Add/Remove programs icon in Control Panel, their is a button on the left side titled "Add/Remove Windows Components".

Click on it and it will open a window showing you all "apps" installed with the original windows install.

Should help in removing the extra software you never use, like Fax Servics and/or MSN Software.

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Yes anything is possible and they all warn you about potential problems

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to version

In the case of AWC I have used this for a while now without any problems on hundreds of computers so it appears to work quite well. It creates a Restore Point when it is first run so that if things go bad the unit can be rolled back to working condition.

To be perfectly honest you are looking at far more problems removing Critical Windows Files to make room on the HDD this is far more likely to create problems than running something like AWC.

Have you considered Compressing the HDD to allow more Data to be stored? To do this open My Computer right click on your C Drive and in the Drop Down Menu add a tick tot he Box on the Lower Left Hand Side that says Compress Drive. You'll be prompted to approve the change and then the unit will run the Compression Utility and fail on a few Windows Files. I just click on the Ignore All Errors and let the system do it's thing at this point.

Slows things down a little bit but allows far more data to be stored.


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You can turn of System Restore

by Jacky Howe In reply to unnecessary files Windows ...

or you can remove all but the last Restore point.
Disk Cleanup XP
Click Start, Run and type CLEANMGR and press Enter <br>
Select the hard disk partition and press OK <br>
At the top of the dialog, click the tab More Options <br>
Under System Restore section, click the button "Clean up..." <br>
Now, all the System Restore points (except the recent one) are cleared and more hard disk space will be free.
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not quite

by hpsundance In reply to unnecessary files Windows ...

I have tried all thera suggestions, but it is not solving the initial problem --
old computer, 6 GB of space, 3 taken up by just Windows.

I have run compressions, removed progrenm, ams, and done all I can. Unfortunately, an update or two came along since then and reaked some havoc. Even all our Office applications seem to have disappeared.

I am back to the original problem -- old computer, trying to extend the life for a while, 6 gb of space, 3 gb taken up by Windows. I have read Windows should not be this big, and just trying to get it back down to size so this darn thing will run for a while longer.

Will look up ACW. Have you heard of something called CCleaner?


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CC Cleaner or Crap Cleaner is available for download here

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to not quite
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by hpsundance In reply to unnecessary files Windows ...

I Googled ACW and got some interesting sites, but not a disk cleaner. What is the full name or url?


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by hpsundance In reply to I think he told you >here ...

Thanks, I missed that link in the thread. I tried CCleaner, and though it cleaned out a few things, it did not reduce the Windows file from its 3Gig plus size.

After I try ACW, I might go ahead and take out the files/folders suggested in other posts, and put them on a CD. We don't plan to add any hardware or do much other than continue to use old laptop as an "internet only" machine.

Thanks for re-directing me to the link. Will let you know if ACW does anything more than CCleaner.

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