When you upgrade from Windows 7 or 8.1 to Windows 10, the software retains a copy of your old operating system just in case you want to revert. However, if you decide that you’re happy running Windows 10 and don’t want to roll back, you’re left with at least 15GB of wasted space on your hard drive, all of it stored in a folder called Windows.old. If you simply try to delete the Windows.old directory in File Explorer, the system won’t let you remove most of the files because it considers them system files.
What Is this Windows.old Folder?
This folder is created when you upgrade from one version of Windows to another, starting with Windows Vista. The Windows.old folder actually contains all the files and data from your previous Windows installation. It can be used to restore your system to the old version of Windows if you don’t like the new version. If you’re looking for a specific file that wasn’t properly copied to your new Windows installation, you could also dig into the Windows.old folder and find it.
Essentially, the Windows.old folder just contains the old Windows system. From the Windows system files to your installed programs and each user account’s settings and files, it’s all here. The new version of Windows just keeps it around in case you’d like to go back to that older version of Windows or in case you need to dig in and find a file.
Step-by-Step Instructions to Delete Windows Old Folder with Screenshots
1. Type ” disk ” into the Windows search box.
2. Right click on “Disk Cleanup” and click on “Run as Administrator“.
3. Select “C Drive” and click “OK“.
4. Scroll down the list until you see “Previous Windows installation(s)” and check on that.
5. Click OK and Click “Delete Files” when asked to confirm
6. Click “Yes” when prompted to confirm your decision.
It will take anywhere from 30 seconds to several minutes to delete the files.
If you face any difficulties in any of the above steps just hit your query in the comment box.