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How to free up space in Windows Server 2008?

When system C drive becomes full and Windows low disk space warning pops up, the first thing you need to do is freeing up space with Windows utilities, and then change applications' settings, extend the system C: drive.

Windows 2008 Server low disk space

Today's hard drives feature jaw-dropping amounts of space, but no matter how big your drive, you'll be amazed at how quickly application/Windows update installs, browser caches, and temporary files can eat up your free space and clutter your system.

Windows 2008 low disk space

About "Low Disk Space" alert

Windows created the "low disk space" warning to alert computer users when their hard drive is running low on available disk space. Windows 2008 Server low disk space will cause many problem, such as:

  • You cannot install Windows updates or any applications.
  • System runs much slower.
  • Users cannot connect to this server.
  • System crash if there is few space in C drive.

So you'd better fix this problem as fast as possible, who wants to see system crash, in that case, you have to start over and keep the server offline for a long time, then how to free up disk space?

Steps to free up space in Windows 2008 Server

Delete Temp files to free up disk space

Click Start > Run, input "%temp%" or open directory step by step "C:\Users\Administrator\AppData\Local\Temp"

Delete old Shadow Copies

Open "My Computer", right-click C drive, select Properties, switch to "Shadow Copies" tab, delete old volume copies.

Delete shadow copy to free up

Empty Recycle Bin and decrease the disk usage size

Empty Recycle Bin to delete the unused files, but before this, you'd better check again wether these files can be deleted permanently.

To decrease the Recycle Bin disk usage size:

Right-click Recycle Bin > Properties, you can easily custom size.

Free up disk space 2008

Empty or Decrease your Web Browsers disk usage for Cached files

Every web browser has a preferences or options area to adjust the temporary internet files and cache usage.

Remove Old Stuff

Just go into Add/Remove Programs or Programs and Features and tidy up. There's likely a pile of old crap in there that's taking up space.

Run the Windows Clean Manager

Windows comes already with a built in cleaner that does simple basic tasks to free up disk space.
To access it click start -> Run -> type cleanmgr -> press OK.

After these steps, you can free up some disk space in Windows 2008 Server, but generally, these tools take a long time to run and cannot free up large amount of free space, they just help you disable Windows 2008 Server low disk space alert temporarily.

To completely solve this problem, you'd better continue the following steps:

  • Change the way you use your hard drives. Many geeks like to keep their data separate from the operating system. This makes it easier to make backups of the data on the D: partition, and easier to replace or reinstall the operating system on C:
  • Change default download and cache path of the applications.
  • If you turn on Windows backup and restore point, don't set it too large.
  • Delete caches and temporary files with Windows cleanup utility regularly.
  • Change partition size and extend C: drive if it is created as too small.

If you don't increase the system partition size and free up space regularly, you may see this low disk space warning soon after.

Increase disk space

The most effective and fast way to solve this problem permanently is extending the system C drive. That is to say, shrink an existing data drive to get some free space and then add it to the system C drive.

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