Low on disk space. What can I delete to free up some space?

I removed everything in Recycling Bin but that did not seem to free up space. Is there any other directory  or temp files I can remove to free up as much space as possible?

OS: Windows Server 2008, and 2003
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Seth SimmonsSr. Systems AdministratorCommented:
treesize will show you where your disk space is being used and help to see what might be able to be deleted


how big are the drives on these servers?
Paul SauvéRetiredCommented:
Image files are probably the largest files on any computer.

For example:
My Pictures folders have 25 462 files and take up 103 GB
My Documents folders have 27 089 files and take up 12,0 GB

About the same number of files, but 8 times the space...
If it is server 2008 r2 add the "desktop" or "themes" feature (I don't remember the exact name of it). Also add the following KB:


Then run the disk cleanup wizard and allow it to remove the unneeded stuff.

Also delete the contents of C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution\Downloads (This applies to Windows 2003 and 2008 and 2008 r2).

On Windows 2003 you can delete the C:\Windows\$Unin.... files.

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joukiejoukAuthor Commented:
Can everything in the "Installer" directory be removed? Are these just temp installers? If I remove everything within this container, will it cause any issues with apps?

Seth SimmonsSr. Systems AdministratorCommented:
Can everything in the "Installer" directory be removed?

i would not touch these folders within the windows tree (except a temp folder)
the installer folder has the msi/msp packages for your installed software and will cause problems in the future if you delete files in there
David Johnson, CD, MVPOwnerCommented:
each user has their %temp% directory and the c:\windows\temp.  With more modern operating systems you can clean up the c:\windows\winsxs folder as well
joukiejoukAuthor Commented:
What is the Winsxs folder? This folder is rather large. It would be great if I can remove unnecessary folders/files contained within it. Can you tell me what folders/files I can remove in that directory?

The disk cleanup utility and KB I mentioned earlier cleans up the WINSXS folder. But that is only available with the R2 version of Windows 2008. You shouldn't do anything in that folder manually.
Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
What ELSE is taking up space?  The Windows folder size is normal (your C: drive size is NOT - it should be larger).
joukiejoukAuthor Commented:
Can I scan a network drive from my local machine or is it not allowed on the free server?

joukiejoukAuthor Commented:
Also, will the free edition allow me to do a custom search? How do I search for image/picture files?
Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
I would suggest you use WinDirStat instead (I know that product better) - it's completely free and uses graphics and extensions to illustrate what is taking up space - and it works fine on network drives.
joukiejoukAuthor Commented:
What is the installer directory? It is rather large. Can contents be deleted from this directory? Are they usually just temporary installers?

As far as I can see that is in the winsxs directory. Never manually delete anything from there. Use the Cleanup wizard I mentioned earlier for that, provided your server is the "R2" version.
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