Space saving

After spending years with 2 XP partitions- 1 x 10GB + 1 x 5GB (compressed) I’ve recently bundled the 2 partitions together into 15GB. And thought- that’s great- no need to worry about system free space ever again! I knew there was plenty of room for Office 2007, and to be honest not much else; an old version of Nero, Hp printer drivers etc. Wasn’t worried at all.
Yeah, right.
After disk space started dropping worringly towards the 1GB mark, I decided to investigate further; after running cleanmgr several times and it doing nothing, decided to investigate even further.
Look under C:\Windows for the usual compressed $xxxxx$ folders thinking I’d move any patches for Windows + Office. Couldn’t find them either.
At this point I got really puzzled, so decided to look up how to uninstall a random Windows/ Office hotfix via the registry:
And found that the culprits were in C:\Windows\Installer- just over 1GB of cached installation files. Found the same thing with a hidden folder- C:\MSOCache- which held about 500MB of Office installation files.
While I don’t recommend deleting these outright, if you’ve got a spare partition with enough room it might be worth at least moving them until necessary (bearing in mind they’ll almost vertainly never be used again). I stuck these commands into a couple of batch files:
robocopy C:\Windows\Installer ?\Windows\Installer *.* /E /MOVE /NP /W:1 /R:1 /LOG+:?\Windows\Installer\copyProcess.log
This moves all patch installation files to partition/ drive ? (replace with a correct drive letter) and appends to the log file in the same location. To move the MSOCache files, just replace \Windows\Installer with \MSOCache.
Some other tricks:
  • run cleanmgr /sageset:65535; this allows you to choose everything available for cleanmgr, saves the options, then cleans up everything if you run cleanmgr /sagerun:65535 in the future
  • cleanmgr doesn’t appear to clear out C:\Windows\Temp; so… del C:\Windows\Temp\*.* /Q should (tho’ you may always get a few perfmon related files held by the system- these should never becoma very big so don’t worry).
  • You could stick both of these into a .cmd file so that cleaning up drive C: becomes a double-click operation.

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