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Delete Uninstall Folders (e.g., $NtUninstallQ314147$)

Posted on 2004-09-24
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Last Modified: 2008-03-10
When is it safe to delete the Uninstall folders (e.g., $NtUninstallQ314147$)? I know the simple answer is "when you don't need them", but they are taking up a lot of space. Currently running WinXP SP1 (still too many horror stories about SP2 for me to try it). Are there other folders that should be cleaned out as well?
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Question by:GivenRandy
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by:Evarest
ID: 12145600
These uninstall folders contain the uninstallers of the Windows XP Hotfix (Windows Update Files: the Q Files). You can delete them, but if you do, you won't be able to properly uninstall these Windows Update Files anymore. I'd personally not recommend deleting them either...

You can see which are installed on your computer by going to windowsupdate.microsoft.com or go to Control Panel|Add or Remove Programs, scroll down the list to the Windows XP hotfixes...

Hope this helps!
Evarest
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Lee W, MVP earned 100 total points
ID: 12145627
When you are comfortable you won't have to uninstall a patch.  Those are essentially backups of files replaced when Windows updates have been applied.  I generally remove any that are 9 months old or older.  By then, there's virtually no chance you'll be uninstalling that update.
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by:Evarest
Evarest earned 100 total points
ID: 12145658
Oh yeah,

clear out C:\Documents and Settings\[User Name]\Local Settings\Temp
All these files can safely be deleted.

Also, you can clear the Temporary Internet Files manually. Here often are stored installation files (which can get quite large). You can access this folder and sort on size:
C:\Documents and Settings\[User Name]\Local Settings\Temporary Internet Files

Also, you might want to search your drive for *.~* *.tmp. These files also can be deleted.

If you're a power user, you might want to do the following trick. WinXP can keep a lot of information in hidden folders. These folders cannot be seen in the normal installation of WinXP and cannot even be accessed when you check Show Hidden Files.
However, as these folders can contain (at least with me they did), over 2 GB of information, it might be interesting to clear them manually once in a while. Essentially, it's the System Restore that doesn't function correctly on some versions of WinXP.

If you want me to guide you through the deletion of these files, let me know!

Kind regards,
Evarest
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