How To Delete Previous Windows Version System Folder?

How To Delete Previous Windows Version System Folder (Windows.old)?

The Windows.old folder is created when upgrading Windows to a newer version, reinstalling or upgrading, and also during major Windows updates. It contains all data and files from your previous Windows installation and can be used to restore your previous version. The folder often occupies a large area of disk space, since frequent upgrades of Windows result in additions to the Windows.old folder. Furthermore, it may slow down your PC.

Some files in Windows.old can be important (for example if you decide to revert to a previous version of Windows), however, while you are using your current Windows installation, they serve only as temporary files on your computer. If you delete them, it will not affect the state of your current Windows installation, however, before deleting, study the files to ensure you do not require any from the previous Windows installation. When you are confident, attempt to delete them as you would for any other file or folder (using keyboard shortcuts, right-clicking the file or folder, and selecting "Delete"). Deletion, however, might be not this easy - if you try to delete the Windows.old folder from File Explorer, you will receive an error message. A better method is to use Windows Tools, which provides more options to save disk space. Even if you decide to keep the folder for some reason, consider backing it up, since Windows will automatically delete it after 30 days of using your new Windows 10 version. In this article, we show how to delete your previous version of the Windows folder also known as Windows.old and save space on your PC.

how to delete windowsold folder

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Delete Windows.old Folder Using Storage Sense Feature

There is an option in Settings called "Storage Sense", the main purpose of which is to save storage space on your PC. It also allows manual removal of temporary files and easy removal of the Windows.old folder. Go to Settings and click "System".

delete windows.old folder using storage sense feature step 1

In the System window, click "Storage". Under "Storage Sense", you will see the "Choose how we free up space" option.

delete windows.old folder using storage sense feature step 2

Checkboxes will be diplay, probably with some unmarked, including one called "Delete previous versions of Windows". This is the one we need. Mark it, ensure that you wish to delete the other marked files, and click "Clean now". If you do not wish to delete the other files, unmark them, leave only "Delete previous versions of Windows" marked, and then click "Clean now".

delete windows.old folder using storage sense feature step 3That's it! You will receive a system message when complete - the Windows.old file should be removed and you will have more free space on your disk.

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Delete Windows.old Folder Using Disk Cleanup Tool

This tool is derived from older versions of Windows and is still available in Windows 10. To access it, type "cleanup" in the Search box near Start. Click the "Disk Cleanup" result.

delete windows.old folder using disk cleanup tool step 1

You can also access this tool by right-clicking on "Local Disk", clicking "Properties" and selecting "Disk Cleanup".

delete windows.old folder using disk cleanup tool step 2

Windows will open the Disk Cleanup tool and you will see a list of files (with checkboxes marked and unmarked). Find "Temporary Windows Installation files" and mark it. If you want to delete other files, mark them as well (or unmark if not). This tool will display the total amount of disk space that it can free up. Click "Clean up system files" and it will delete selected files from your computer.

delete windows.old folder using disk cleanup tool step 3

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Video Showing How To Delete Windows.old Folder:

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About the author:

Tomas Meskauskas

I am passionate about computer security and technology. I have an experience of 10 years working in various companies related to computer technical issue solving and Internet security. I have been working as an editor for since 2010. Follow me on Twitter to stay informed about the latest tech news or online security threats. Contact Tomas Meskauskas.

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