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Starlight and moonbeams
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Okay, this is going to be a long post:

Recently, I've been noticing that my hard drive on my laptop (which is barely over a year old) has been disappearing. It's been going down to 421kbs of free space on the C drive, even, and I can't seem to figure out why.

My Dell laptop is split into three parts: The C drive (which is the system drive, and has 59 GBs), the D drive (labeled data, which has 229 GBs), and the Recovery drive (forget what label that is.)

I've been loading all my pictures, music, and videos onto the Data drive (D), which has about 20 GB of free space left. However, I've been having trouble with the C drive.

This is what I did:

1. I first compressed the whole C drive to save space, but then I was told on a different forum that this was a bad idea. After I did it, too, certain programs wouldn't open, the registry was screwed up, and the DVD drive disappeared completely.
2. After realizing this, I deleted the hibernation sys file from my computer and disabled hibernation and sleep mode. This freed up 3.5 GBs of space.
3. I then decompressed everything on the C drive, including files that were compressed before. This left my computer at about 2.9GBs of free space.
4. I went in with a registry editor and fixed the registry. Also cleared the Temp folder, cleared my Windows Live Mail cache (and uninstalled it, because I use Gmail anyway), and defragmented the computer.
5. Defragmentation took almost a day, because I had never done it before. But now the computer runs really fast.
6. My free space is down to 2.20GBs of free space
7. I'd like to reinstall hibernation, but that requires 1.30GBs of more free space, and I don't know where to get it.

Can someone help me out? I'm studying computer programming, but I just started, so I'm not too knowledgeable about these things. :eek: I certainly never knew that compressing the hard drive would end up screwing up the registry!
 

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Hmm the only thing that springs to mind is to manually check the usage of the C: drive, folder by folder. Scanning for folder sizes is a CPU and Hard Drive-intensive operation, so operative systems usually don't provide size information about folders in the "details" view. Which means you have to get pen & paper, and manually check for the sizes of the folders, and write it down.

There are programs which will do it for you, though. Folder Sizes is excellent, but it's not free. TreeSize is free, and it's not bad at all. If you can't make heads or tails of the readout, post a screenshot, we'll take a look at it. :)

It should give you an idea of what's taking up so much space. I'm curious to see how it goes, please report back! :D
 

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Hey Winter's Tale let me ask you, is the size of C decreasing or is it filling up? Either way, a 59 GB drive being filled with just system files is weird, it shouldn't take nearly that much space. You sure there's nothing else on it? C is where pretty much everything gets saved to/installed on by default. Could there be any unnecessary files you didn't notice before? Because that might make solving this a lot simpler.

Alternatively you can resize the hard drive and just toss it a couple gigs of space from D.
 

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1. Download Windows 7 original msdn iso, that corresponds to your Windows 7 version installed on your laptop.
2. Install it, and use your Windows 7 cd key (that's printed on a sticker on the bottom of your laptop) to activate...
3. Use either True Image or Norton Ghost... or... you can try that build in windows 7 system backup thingy... to make a system image back up, which you will use to make your windows fresh again, every couple of months or so... (you won't even have the need to defragment your primary partition with this scenario)
4. ???
5. PROFIT

P.S.
Yes... That might seem like pirating at first... But not unless you input your own Windows CD key... And everything will be 100 percent legal afterwards.

Even if you don't input your win cd key, you can legally use your copy of windows 7 msdn in trial mode, for 120 days...

Then reinstall and start all over.

http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/windows-7/extend-the-windows-7-trial-from-30-to-120-days/
 

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There are programs which will do it for you, though. Folder Sizes is excellent, but it's not free. TreeSize is free, and it's not bad at all. If you can't make heads or tails of the readout, post a screenshot, we'll take a look at it. :)
WinDirStat is what all the cool kids use.

But yeah run Diskclean Up in your accessories folder, then launch WinDirStat/TreeSize/Folder Sizes, see what's been taking up your space, and you should be able to work out how to fix your own problem from there.
 

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All the cool kids who want to get colour-induced seizures?
I've always found it... ugh, distracting. Dunno, it might be my SA-related cognitive problems, though.

Also: *iz sad OP isn't reporting back. waz curious*
If you hide the part on the bottom it's wonderful, the colour coded parts telling you what files are important and stuff are great.
 

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Are you trying to say you have an extra full partition? I've had that happen with my recovery drive before when I had wiped a hard drive it saved fully on that partition so it needed to be removed.
If so, go to administrative services -> disk management and delete the sucker.
 

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Are you trying to say you have an extra full partition? I've had that happen with my recovery drive before when I had wiped a hard drive it saved fully on that partition so it needed to be removed.
If so, go to administrative services -> disk management and delete the sucker.
Pretty sure the partition in question is his operating system partition, which might not be the greatest idea to remove.
 

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Pretty sure the partition in question is her operating system partition, which might not be the greatest idea to remove.
She's a he actually lol. But yeah C drive no touchy. I skimmed didnt fully read it

Wintertale I'm in a cpa program too btw:).

Try darik's boot and nuke and wipe everything off and put it on a back up before you do that to keep your programs you need etc.. like an external hard drive from wd or whatever. I did that had a similar problem to you and needed more space for coding. I eventually bought a new laptop beause my dual core processor woudlnt run vmware, but for the mean time it did the job lol gl
 

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But my Dell came with a restore cd, not a system disk. I'd have to contact Dell for the Windows 7 CDrom...either that or pirate it.
Usually the restore CD is bootable, and will let you do everything you'd do with an original OS installation CD, plus would take care of installing the drivers for you, after OS installation is complete.

But, OS reisntallation is a bit extreme for a Hard Drive space problem. Chances are you can find out what's taking up so much space, find a way to keep all that stuff elsewhere, and keep you OS as it is.
 

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Does the space come back if you restart?

On my computer. Firefox, Flash video and podcasts are the hard drive eaters. I can get 6 GB back just by restarting most times. Horrible memory management...
 

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Starlight and moonbeams
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Yes, the space sometimes comes back when I restart. However, it doesn't always.

Right now...this is weird. I've had problems with image files not showing, unless the hard drive space is above 400MB. So now it's reading 89MB free, but image files are showing.

I have everything decompressed except for the two Program Files folders, and the hidden Program data folder. Originally when I compressed those, I got back 1GB of free space...but now that space has disappeared.

I just ran a disk check, and it fixed all the bad sectors. There were quite a lot of them. I also have run my antivirus several times, and it shows no virus. I also have defragged, to no result other than my laptop running faster.

I have compressed the Program files, uninstalled a lot of programs, removed hibernation, and still it shows up as me having less space than before I did all that. WTF?!?!

Oh, and I've installed Tree Size. It shows Program files and Windows as having the most space taken up, but I don't want to mess around in those folders.
 
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