Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Solutions: Find free space on your hard drive

Q. I have a 107 GB C drive and a 220 GB internal drive partitioned into two drives on which I store my finance, data and Word programs on one part and my photos on the second. I back up those two drives on two external drives. I use Windows XP SP2. My C drive is shown as having 98 GB or 92 percent used and 9.41 GB or 8 percent free. When I checked on what programs I have installed, the total usage of all the programs I could find amounted to 2044 MB! I realize that Windows is not included, but still the used count seems extraordinarily high. How do I find what is hogging my C drive and how do I get rid of it if it does not appear as one of my installed programs?

A. Many other files besides program files can take up space. Something I do occasionally is to look for all files greater than 10 MB. It always seems to find some large files that I may have forgotten about or didn't know were there. Open your C drive in File Explorer and press the F3 key (shortcut to the Find dialog). Click "All Files and Folders." Click "What size is it." Select the "Specify size" option, and since it's in KB (a ridiculous option in this day and age) enter 10000 (which is 10 MB). Scroll down and click the "Search hidden files and folders" option and then finally click Search. This is to just show you what large files you have on your system and where most of the space is going. Most or all of them may be needed, but you may find some that are candidates for removal. Be very careful if you decide to zap any of them and make sure you know what the file is before doing so. Run the Disk Cleanup tool and see what that can do for you. Here are some top secret additional options known to just a few people outside of Redmond, Wash., that will allow you to get the most out of the Disk Cleanup tool:

1. Click Start, Run, and type "cleanmgr /sageset:99" (without the quotes and make sure you put a space between cleammgr and /) then click OK.

2. Make your choices, click OK. The Disk Cleanup Tool will now be ready to run in an expanded mode that will offer you a larger selection of cleanup options.

3. Click Start, Programs, Accessories, System Tools, right-click Disk Cleanup and select Properties. Add a space and /Sagerun:99 to the end of the Shortcut in the Target box.

4. Now run the Disk Cleanup.

This works for Windows Vista and Windows XP.

Q. I wondered if it is possible to access your previous columns online? I clipped your column a couple of weeks ago, with some relevant information, and apparently discarded it by mistake.

A. I can tell you, but you must promise not to let anyone else know. The top secret Web address for past columns through March 10 is The Times also has a great new feature that allows subscribers to access an exact image of the paper online, including this column (along with a picture of my ugly mug) — you can find it at

Send questions to or Personal Tech, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731. Questions are answered only in this column.

Solutions: Find free space on your hard drive 05/11/08 [Last modified: Wednesday, May 14, 2008 11:44am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. In one day, fundraisers appear to reach goal to move Confederate monument from downtown Tampa


    TAMPA — Hillsborough County commissioners gave an ultimatum Wednesday to people who want to move a Confederate monument from downtown Tampa: Raise the money yourselves or it stays. They had 30 days.

    It took 24 hours.

    Private money is flowing in to help move the Memoria in Aeterna Confederate monument from the old county courthouse to a private family cemetery. [CHRIS URSO   |   Times]
  2. Who are the antifa?


    On Monday, President Donald Trump capitulated to the popular demand that he distance himself from his comment that "many sides" were to blame in Charlottesville by explicitly denouncing white nationalism. "Racism is evil," he appeared to grudgingly concede, "including the KKK, neo-Nazis and white supremacists."

    A group of counterprotesters who identified themselves as antifa, or anti-fascists, rest Saturday during a rally of white nationalists in Charlottesville, Va. Counterprotesters in Charlottesville came united against white supremacy, but they advocated a wide array of beliefs, tactics and goals. [Edu Bayer | New York Times]
  3. Lucky carrot: Alberta woman finds mother-in-law's lost ring

    Bizarre News

    CAMROSE, Alberta — A Canadian woman who lost her engagement ring 13 years ago while weeding her garden on the family farm is wearing it proudly again after her daughter-in-law pulled it from the ground on a misshapen carrot.

    In an undated photo provided by Iva Harberg, Mary Grams, 84, holds a carrot that grew through her engagement ring in Alberta, Canada. Grams, who lost her diamond ring 13 years ago while pulling weeds in her garden, is wearing it proudly again after her daughter-in-law pulled it from the ground on a misshapen carrot. Grams, 84, said she can't believe the vegetable actually grew through and around the diamond engagement ring she had given up for lost. [Iva Harberg/The Canadian Press via AP]
  4. Good luck finding solar eclipse glasses across Tampa Bay, U.S.


    Andi Figart pulled up to the New Port Richey Library on Thursday morning to an unusual sight.

    NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 11: Pairs of free solar eclipse glasses sit on display at a Warby Parker store  on August 11, 2017 in New York City. To view the upcoming total solar eclipse on August 21 eye protection is essential. The designer eyeglass store expects to give out thousands of pairs of the glasses before the event.  (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
  5. Republicans face primary in whirlwind special election for Plant City-area House seat


    PLANT CITY — With qualifying completed this week, the field is set in a whirlwind special election to replace state Rep. Dan Raulerson, R-Plant City — and the race could come down to two candidates in a Republican primary, Yvonne Fry and Lawrence McClure.

    Yvonne Fry is one of two Republican candidates with strong Plant City ties to quality for a special election in state House District 58.