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Urgent Storage space needs to be squeezed from Drive C in Windows 2003 Server

The Drive C of my Windows 2003 Production server is running out of storage space. It only has 100MB left. I must keep this server up for 2 more weeks until my new environment is ready. The server is running IIS with a few websites.  I cannot uninstall any of the running programs because they are responsible for the well running of the server.

I have 2 questions:

A- What are the files that can be safely deleted without impairing or impacting  the Windows OS, and where are they located?

B- In case of a disaster, would I be able to restore my Windows Backup (based on Win 03 Backup) to a newly prvisioned Windows 2008 R2 server? is there any special procedure to follow to do that?

I am trying to prepare a recovery plan to reduce the downtime should my server go down for any reason.

I appreciate expert input with step by step instructions

Thank you
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Michael Ortega
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Use something like Spacemonger ( to get a graphical representation of your hd. See if there is anything obvious that you can delete. I would look for the IIS logs. They tend to build up over time. You can purge those.

If the server has any databases you may consider moving those to another volume if you have a 2nd volume to move them to.

TreeSize (Jam Software) is another file manager showing you files/folders by size (largest at top) and does a good job there.

In addition to the above post, look in your various temp folders and see if you have Disk Cleanup on your system. If so, run right away to eliminate old temp files.

... Thinkpads_User
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Under the WINDOWS folder, there are many files with the extension .log

Is it safe to delete all of them including:


I appreciate your input
Leew wrote a nice article that outlines ways to recover space from the server's boot drive.

If that doesn't free up enough space, there's an easy way to resize the boot partition -- but it requires shutting down the server while you're doing the resize [i.e. booting to another environment that allows you to make the changes}.    I've outlined that in several posts on EE ... this is the general idea (assuming your primary drive has C: and D: partitions)::

Your disk now "looks" like this:


... where the C's and D's represent the two current partitions.    

To make C: larger, you first need to free up some space by resizing D.    Your disk will then "look" like this:


... where the x's represent unallocated space.

But to expand C:, the unallocated space must be immediately adjacent to C:
... i.e. the disk needs to "look" like this:


To accomplish that, you need to do the following:

(1)  Resize D:
(2)  "Slide" D: to the end fo the disk, so the free space is immediately adjacent to C:
(3)  Resize C:

I would do all 3 with the excellent Boot-It BM.    The free demo will do everything you need.

Just download it;  create a bootable CD with the included MakeDisk utility;  then do the following:

(a)  Boot to the CD -- select CANCEL at the first prompt;  then OK.   Then click on Partition Work.
(b)  Highlight the partition that represents D:  (they won't have letters, since you're working outside of Windows;  but you can easily tell by the size)
(c)  Resize the partition as desired.
(d)  Now, with the same "resized" partition highlighted, click on Slide ... and select zero free space "after" it => this will move it so the free space is before it (i.e. next to C:)
(e)  Highlight the partition that represents C: => then click on ReSize and make it as large as it can be (i.e. using the free space you created by the earlier resize & slide operations)

Done :-)

Note:  The initial resize of D: will be fairly quick (typically a few seconds to a few minutes);   the "slide" will take a while -- it has to move all of the data on D:  (so how long it takes depends on how much data is on that partition);   the final resize of C: will be VERY quick (a couple seconds).
In regards to question B, I would look into creating a virtual machine out of your windows 2003 server.  Then on your 2008 Server, you can add the Hyper-V role and run the virtual machine there.  

A benefit to running it as a virtual machine, is that it is much quicker to bring up in the case of a disaster.  As long as you have a current backup of the virtual machine directory, you can run it on any server hardware that is running Hyper-V.  To bring a virtual machine up is usually much quicker than going through the process of restoring the full server from backup.

If there are alot of changes that take place on the Windows 2003 server, you may need to run the P2V process more than once to keep the backup image as current as possible.

Here are some links for doing this:

P2V Process:


Citrix XenConvert:
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- I appreciate all the answers. The last 2 seem to be inspiring  for me.  

- My Windows 2003 Server is Vmware 3.5 VM. I would appreciate if you outline the few steps to take to move it to a Win 08 based VM, such as:

1- Create a Win 08 Instance on a new server hardware

2- what next? - Would I just restore the Data from the Win 03 Backup to the new server? - Does the Win 08R2 Backup program allow me to restore Win 03 produced Backup, just by running the backup? - is there any special command for that?

"... My Windows 2003 Server is Vmware 3.5 VM ..."  ==>   This is very important info you omitted from your question !!      VMWare has its own utility (vdiskmanager) that allows you to expand the disk.    You can easily expand the size of the virtual disk with this tool;  but this does not expand it from the perspective of the underlying guest OS.    With Server 2003, you would then have to use Diskpart with the "extend" option.
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Thank you everybody, you are awsome, I appreciate the help!.