If you come to think about it, your Windows 10 computer is like the streets and roads in your city and your files are the vehicles on the road. In order for the vehicle you need for the day to reach you, it needs to go through traffic. If traffic is heavy, then it can be delayed on its way. But if the road is clear, then it can get to you as fast as it can. There’s no use for a fast car if the road is in heavy traffic.
In the same manner, your computer needs some good free space for it to go on about its tasks, so you can too. To do this, you need to know what is taking a lot of space in your storage.
First of all, put on your detective’s hat (if you have one – if not, an imaginary one will do). Find out exactly what’s taking up all the room on your hard drive by launching the Settings app from the Start menu then clicking ‘System’ and then ‘Storage’.
Select your hard drive and Windows very helpfully lists everything on your system, including Windows files, applications, games, pictures, music, videos and so on.
If you need to take a closer look, click on any of the entries. For example, click on ‘Apps & games’ and then choose ‘Sort by size’ to see if any of your installed programs are taking up huge amounts of space.
The first things you want to address are your apps and games and delete the ones you rarely use. The one taking up the most space is usually at the top of the list. This is a case-to-case basis though. If these games or apps are really important, then it’s up for you to choose between them and your storage.
You can’t delete a lot of these files straight from the Storage window, though you can quickly find them on disk. In the case of apps and games there is the option to uninstall any large programs you’re not using.
From the Apps & games screen, with the list sorted by size, you’ll see the worst offenders at the top. Click on any entry in the list then choose ‘Uninstall’ to remove it.
It’s up to you which apps and games you get rid of – it really depends how desperate you are to free up some space and how many unused applications you’ve got lying around on your hard drive. Remember you can always install these programs again if you need to.
While the above step is for applications, this next step is for files and other data. To free up space, you can delete files you no longer need, especially those that are old.
Manually deleting files in File Explorer is a time-consuming but very precise way of freeing up room on your hard drive in Windows. You can use any of the links in the Storage window we looked at previously to jump to particular folders, or you can just browse as normal by launching File Explorer from the Start menu.
Right-click on any folder and choose Properties to see how much room it and all of its subfolders are taking up – a quick tap on the Delete key will erase any file or folder. Hold down Ctrl while clicking to select multiple folders at once.
Storage space is important for your computer to work as it should. The same goes for laptop data recovery. If you need help with this, we can be your guide.