As you use your PC, various data and files will be accumulated. Not only files such as Word, Excel, and images, but also installing an update program when updating software fills capacity of an HDD and an SSD, and the operation of a PC becomes slow and unstable. So what should you do if your HDD or SSD runs out of space? This content introduces a method to solve an HDD or an SSD capacity shortage using a Windows PC as an example.
1. Delete unnecessary files
2. Disk cleanup
3. Move old files to external media
・1. Delete unnecessary files
Firstly, check the data and files saved on an HDD or an SSD and delete unnecessary ones. Just putting it in the Recycle Bin does not mean that it has been deleted. Deletion is completed and capacity can be secured only by performing “Empty Recycle Bin”. After doing this, however, it cannot be restored. If you have some data and files that may be used later, it is better to copy them to an external HDD in advance, or copy it to a USB memory. In addition, although some applications are pre-installed on your computer at the time of purchase, many of these may not be used ever. Just by scrutinizing and deleting these, you can free up space on your HDD or SSD.
・2. Disk cleanup
Windows has a function called a disk cleanup tool to increase the free space of an HDD and an SSD. This helps you search and delete unnecessary files. For Windows 10, open your PC from Explorer and right-click on the drive you want to clean up. Click Properties in the menu. Click the Disk Cleanup button on the properties screen to start it. This function automatically and safely delete unwanted files such as old data and temporary files generated by OS updates.
There is almost no danger in deleting files using this function, however be careful when deleting files manually. If you accidentally delete files required for system and application operation, your computer will not operate normally. Please double check before clicking OK and then delete.
・3. Move old files to external media
Among old data, there are data such as photos, music, data not used now but may be used in the future, and data that must be stored due to business circumstances. One option is to store such files on external media. External media includes an external HDD and an external SSD, as well as a disk such as a USB memory and a CD-R. Alternatively, an online server can also be used for file storage. Except for online servers that can add capacity, external media have a capacity limit. To store a lot of data, choose an external HDD or an external SSD with a large capacity. In either case, there is a risk of file damage or loss. Especially for CD-Rs and DVD-Rs, pigment may become lighter due to deterioration over time, making it impossible to read data. Backing up important data on multiple media is recommended.
At this time, please pay attention to the data to be moved. Data such as photos, music, videos, and documents are no problem, however don’t move anything that is necessary for the operation of your system or application. If you accidentally move or delete important items, in the worst case, an OS such as Windows may not start. When using cloud-based services, there are risks such as unauthorized access and information leakage. After understanding the advantages and disadvantages, take measures such as not using same passwords and using multiple cloud-type services.
Although a huge amount of data files are stored in a personal computer, not all of them are used all the time, and some of them may not be used over time. In such a case, try increasing a free space on an HDD or an SSD using the method explained this content. However, if the capacity is still insufficient, consider adding more HDDs and SSDs, or replacing a PC with the one equipped with a larger capacity of an HDD or an SSD.