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HP PCs - Resolving low disk space issues and errors (Windows 10)

When too little free space is available on your computer hard drive, Windows updates might not install, apps and files might not download, and low disk space errors or warning messages might display. The computer or tablet performance can also become unreliable. Use these procedures to resolve these issues and errors.

Note:

If you are using an HP notebook PC with a 32 GB hard drive and have trouble upgrading due to low disk space, go to HP Notebook PCs - Freeing up Storage Space on a 32 GB Hard Drive (Windows 10).

Freeing up space on the hard drive

Empty the Recycle Bin, remove unwanted files and programs, and adjust System Restore settings to free up space on your hard drive.

Running HP Performance Tune-up Check to free up disk space

Resolve low disk space issues using HP Performance Tune-up Check.

  1. In Windows, search for and open HP Support Assistant, or click the app icon in the taskbar.

    If the app is not installed on your computer, download the latest version from the HP Support Assistant website.

    Note:

    HP Support Assistant is required to run HP Performance Tune-up Check.

  2. Go to to open the tool.

    If the tool does not automatically open, search for and open HP Support Assistant. Select your device, and then click Optimize your performance in the Fixes & Diagnostics section.

    If you are unable to run the tool, see Removing unwanted files with Storage Sense.

  3. Under Additional Options, select Empty Recycle Bin and Clean Web-browsers history, cookies and cache, and then click Optimize.

    The tool removes unwanted files from your hard drive.

    The HP Performance Tune-up Check home screen

If the issue persists, remove unwanted files with Storage Sense.

Removing unwanted files with Storage Sense

Using Storage Sense frees up space on your computer. When configured properly, Storage Sense can automatically delete unwanted files, such as temporary files, old items in the recycle bin, and files in the Downloads folder that have not been recently accessed or used, including old versions of Windows.

  1. Search for and open Storage settings.

  2. On the Storage window, select Temporary files.

    Selecting Temporary files on the Storage settings window
  3. Select the temporary files you want to delete, and then click Remove files.

    CAUTION:

    HP recommends that you do not select the Downloads option. Doing so might delete personal files.

    Selecting temporary files to remove from the computer
  4. Return to the Storage window, select On beneath the information about Storage Sense, and then select Configure Storage Sense or run it.

    Turning on Storage Sense and selecting Configure Storage Sense or run it now
  5. On the Configure Storage Sense or run it now window, select how often Storage Sense runs, deletes temporary files, and empties the recycle bin and Downloads folder.

    Configuring Storage Sense settings
  6. Scroll down to Free up space now, and then click Clean now to run Storage Sense immediately using the settings previously selected.

    Selecting the Clean now button to run Storage Sense immediately using the settings previously selected

Removing unwanted programs with Windows 10

You can remove unused or unwanted programs from your computer to increase the space on your hard drive.

  1. Search for and open Apps and features.

  2. In the Apps & features window, select the app you want to remove, and then click Uninstall.

    Clicking Uninstall in the Apps & features settings
  3. Click Uninstall again to confirm.

Windows removes the app from the computer.

Adjusting System Restore settings to free up disk space

System Restore is a feature of Windows that can revert system software and settings back to a particular date. System Restore does this by saving the changes made to system files in a restore point. Restore points use a lot of hard drive space. Adjusting the System Restore settings can free up hard drive space.

  1. Search for and open Control Panel.

  2. In the Control Panel Search field, type system, and then select System.

    Selecting the System option in the Control Panel app
  3. On the System home screen, select System protection.

    Selecting 'System protection' on the System home screen
  4. On the System Protection tab, click Configure.

    Clicking Configure on the System Protection tab
  5. To reduce the amount of hard drive space the system reserves for system restores, slide the Max Usage slider bar to a lower percentage. You can choose more or less depending on how many restore points you want and the capacity of your hard drive.

    Changing the Max Usage slider to a lower percentage
  6. Click OK to save the settings, and then click OK again to exit the System Properties window.

If the issue persists, confirm that enough hard drive space is available.

Confirming that enough hard drive space is available

Check the amount of free space on the hard drive. If the free space is under 5% of the total disk space, free up more space on the disk.

  1. Open File Explorer, and then navigate to This PC.

  2. Under Devices and drives, right-click the main hard drive (usually C:), and then select Properties.

    Selecting Properties from the drop-down menu of the main hard drive
  3. Click the General tab to view the amount of free space available on the hard drive.

    Checking the amount of free space on the main hard drive
  4. If less than 5% of the total hard drive space is available, run HP Performance Tune-up Check, remove files with Storage Sense, and remove unwanted programs to make more disk space available.

Additional tips to free up space

Use the following procedures to prevent storage problems.

Using more efficient storage settings in Windows 10

If your computer has two or more drives, storing personal files on the main drive can cause the PC to run slower. To improve performance, move personal files to a secondary hard drive.

  1. Search for and open Storage settings.

  2. On the Storage window, check the remaining storage space of the main drive and review the different types of files and the space they use. This information can help you decide which content to save on another drive. Click Show more categories to view additional files.

    Storage usage by content type
  3. Scroll down to More storage settings, and then select Change where new content is saved.

    Selecting 'Change where new content is saved'
  4. In the list, click the drop-down menu under the type of content you want saved to a different hard drive. Then, select the drive where you want new content saved.

    CAUTION:

    Do not save content to the Recovery drive. Storing content on this drive can make the operating system unrecoverable in the event of a problem.

    Selecting drive choices to save space on the main drive
  5. After changing the drive designation, click Apply to save the changes.

Configuring Storage Sense to free up space automatically

Using Storage Sense frees up space on your computer. When configured properly, Storage Sense can automatically delete unwanted files, such as temporary files, old items in the recycle bin, and files in the Downloads folder that have not been recently accessed or used.

Storage Sense does not remove all the unneeded files. In addition to the files that are automatically deleted, you might need to delete other files, such as update logs.

  1. Search for and open Storage settings.

  2. On the Storage window, select On beneath the information about Storage Sense, and then select Configure Storage Sense or run it.

    Turning on Storage Sense and selecting Configure Storage Sense or run it now
  3. On the Configure Storage Sense or run it now window, select how often Storage Sense runs, deletes temporary files, and empties the recycle bin and Downloads folder.

    Note:

    Depending on your version of Windows, Storage Sense options might vary.

    • Run Storage Sense: Use the drop-down menu to select when you want Storage Sense to run.

    • Temporary Files: Select the check box to delete temporary files that your apps aren't using. Then, use the drop-down menus to decide when to delete files from the recycle bin and Downloads folder.

    • Free up space now: Select Clean now to run Storage Sense immediately using the settings previously selected.

    Configuring Storage Sense settings

Saving files to a new location on a secondary drive

To save files to a new location on a secondary or external hard drive, change the location of the folders to the new destination to avoid confusion when saving files.

If you are using a removable storage device, such as a thumb drive, make sure to insert the device into the computer each time you save to it.

  1. Open File Explorer, and then navigate to This PC.

  2. Right-click the Documents folder, and then select Properties.

    Selecting Properties from the drop-down menu of the Documents folder
  3. On the Document Properties window, select the Location tab, and then click Find Target.

    Selecting 'Find Target' on the Location tab
  4. Browse to the location of the new document folder, click the address bar, and then copy the new address.

  5. Clear the field on the Document Properties window, paste the new address in the field, and then click Apply.

    Pasting the new address in the Location field
  6. In the Move Folder box, click Yes to move your files and content from the old location to the new location.

    You can repeat this procedure to change the location folders to avoid confusion when saving files.

Moving files to an external drive

If you have data or files you want to save, but you do not need them very often, you can save them on a removable drive. Then, you can connect the drive when you need the files, and they do not take up space on the main hard drive.

Make sure that the external storage device has sufficient unused space to accommodate the files you are moving to it.

  1. Connect the external drive, open the storage location on your computer, and then create a new folder on the drive.

  2. On the computer hard drive, open C:\Users\yourname.

  3. Right-click the My Documents or Documents folder, and then select Properties.

  4. On the Document Properties window, select the Location tab, and then click Move.

  5. In the dialog box, navigate to the new folder you created on the external hard drive, and then create a new folder inside it called Documents. Select that new folder.

  6. Click Select Folder > OK to move the files.

  7. Click Yes to confirm, and then wait while the files are moved.


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