Your SSD drive will need >27GB free space on C: to upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 8, here’s some clean-up tips
Windows 8 system requirements listed here (and above) include the big gotcha: at least 20GB free disk space is required on your C: drive for 64 bit upgrade installs. This is likely to still be the case with the RTM (arriving August 15th).
If you have a workstation-caliber laptop, like my vZilla and its 128GB mSATA SSD, you may find keeping things like a 16GB hibernate file on a 128GB C: drive a challenge. Staying short of only 10% free space at all times is also a good idea, so you really need more like 25GB for a bit of extra margin, and avoiding potential SSD performance impacts. Especially important on older, non-TRIM enabled SSDs.
So, here’s some methods to get some empty space back, in increasing order of aggressiveness/desperation. If you are uncomfortable doing these actions, you shouldn’t be doing them! Let’s face it, this site is largely for intermediate and advanced users, but the first two are the easiest, safest, and also likely have the biggest impact in free space.
1) Start with clicking Start, then typing “Disk Cleanup” then pressing enter
- That’s the easy one, just follow the wizard.
2) Nuke that big hibernation file properly:
- You can use Microsoft’s fixit wizard, downloadable from Microsoft here, but note that this will disable the Fast Startup / Hybrid Boot feature.
- Open a command prompt with administrative privileges.
- Enter powercfg.exe -h off
- Exit the command prompt.
If you got 16GB of RAM, well, you now have 16GB more free disk space on your C: drive. That’s right, no reboot required, immediate benefit (if you don’t need hibernate functions). Unfortunately, if you choose a power profile that uses hibernate (such as suspend when inactive for 15 minutes, and hibernate after 8 hours), then the hibernate file will come back again.
4) Consider moving the My Documents and other user folders:
- If you have a D: drive to move them too, and your D: drive isn’t so slow you’ll regret it: www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/18629-user-folders-change-default-location.html
5) Manually delete all files (that are dated older than your last reboot) in the temp directory:
- paste this line into your Start, Search (or Run) box: shell:UsersFilesFolder\AppData\Local\Temp
- sort the resulting file/folder view by date
- select everything (files and folders) older than your last reboot (to avoid trying to delete currently in-use temp files)
- right-click, select Properties, to determine how much disk space you’re about to recover (for some reason, I find Step #1 above often leaves a lot of files here!)
- hit the Del key while holding down Shift to permanently delete the selected files and folders immediately, avoiding the Recycle Bin entirely
- Read all about exactly how to do this here.
- In my case, seen in this video below, I free up 18GB of space on my 128GB SSD, by moving my backup of up my 64GB iPhone 5:
- you can start working your way down the list here: helpful.knobs-dials.com/index.php/Making_your_windows_installation_smaller
Feb. 01, 2013 Update: I’ve found that if you use Lotus Notes, you may want to check out this subdirectory below where you have Notes installed, and nuke some old, mysterious huge DMP files: /Notes/Data/workspace/logs