Solved

winsxs folder 12Gb in size, how can I reduce?!

Title says it mostly.

My winsxs folder is currently taking up 12Gb of space. As I have windows installed on a 128Gb SSD this is taking up valuable space, with windows being 50% bigger than it should be.

I already used Disk Cleanup to tidy up the folder, this morning it was 19Gb(!!) but 12Gb is still really high imo and kind of unacceptable.

Is there any other method that can clean this folder more completely?

Also, I want to upgrade to Win 10, but what will happen to this folder and data? Will it get cleaned out at that point or not?

Thnks!
12 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about winsxs folder 12gb size reduce
  1. Ty for answer but please read the post:

    "I already used Disk Cleanup to tidy up the folder, this morning it was 19Gb(!!) but 12Gb is still really high imo and kind of unacceptable"
  2. Best answer
    The tool removes any any unnecessary Windows Update files. Any left behind are required by the operating system so it would not be safe/prudent to remove them.
  3. k@rt said:
    Title says it mostly.

    My winsxs folder is currently taking up 12Gb of space. As I have windows installed on a 128Gb SSD this is taking up valuable space, with windows being 50% bigger than it should be.

    I already used Disk Cleanup to tidy up the folder, this morning it was 19Gb(!!) but 12Gb is still really high imo and kind of unacceptable.

    Is there any other method that can clean this folder more completely?

    Also, I want to upgrade to Win 10, but what will happen to this folder and data? Will it get cleaned out at that point or not?

    Thnks!


    you have already tried the safe/easy/official microsoft way to reduce the size of that folder. anything else will be risky
  4. Thanks for the answers everyone, but I am disappointed... I am the only person here who finds this totally ridiculous?! I can of course appreciate that keeping some degree of update backups is understandable, but we are talking about 12Gb here!!! I honestly don't think it is acceptable for a piece of software that claims it requires 20Gb of space to install, suddenly taking up 35-40Gb of space.

    Surly this is just down to laziness on the part of Microsoft, I don't believe that this is the ONLY way their update system can function, probably just makes it easier on them to dump all this data on the end user than actually streamline the system.

    Anyway, rant over... I was wonder if it really is impossible to remove this data, is it possible to MOVE it somehow? Is there some way to move this data across to another disk and then link the folders? Or would this be too risky as well?

    Does anyone know what will happen to this folder when I upgrade to Window10? If it is going to stay this kind of size I may have to clean install my system before upgrading.
  5. k@rt said:
    Thanks for the answers everyone, but I am disappointed... I am the only person here who finds this totally ridiculous?! I can of course appreciate that keeping some degree of update backups is understandable, but we are talking about 12Gb here!!! I honestly don't think it is acceptable for a piece of software that claims it requires 20Gb of space to install, suddenly taking up 35-40Gb of space.

    Surly this is just down to laziness on the part of Microsoft, I don't believe that this is the ONLY way their update system can function, probably just makes it easier on them to dump all this data on the end user than actually streamline the system.

    Anyway, rant over... I was wonder if it really is impossible to remove this data, is it possible to MOVE it somehow? Is there some way to move this data across to another disk and then link the folders? Or would this be too risky as well?

    Does anyone know what will happen to this folder when I upgrade to Window10? If it is going to stay this kind of size I may have to clean install my system before upgrading.


    winsxs folder has very little to to do with windows update. most windows update files are stored under C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution
    read about it. on my windows 7 its 15 GB, on windows 10 its 5.3 GB so there is a huge improvement.
  6. What is it's purpose then? When I was reading about this yesterday people seemed to be saying that it was concerned with maintaining system stability after updates change things, which is why the longer you have windows installed the bigger it gets.

    I understood from peoples posts that a lot of that data was kept as a sort of "just in case" you do have a problem, windows can use the data in this folder to help fix them. I got the impression that when things are working normally most of the data in this folder was essentially erroneous and served little purpose.

    I wouldn't mind if the folder was <5 Gb, but like i keep saying, 12Gb-20Gb or higher just seems to inefficient. How badly do you have to design a piece of software so that inside of 3-4 years it literally has to double it's size just to remain stable?!

    I never knew this was an issue with Windows7 before this, I am quite surprised that people don't complain about this more...
  7. k@rt said:
    What is it's purpose then? When I was reading about this yesterday people seemed to be saying that it was concerned with maintaining system stability after updates change things, which is why the longer you have windows installed the bigger it gets.

    I understood from peoples posts that a lot of that data was kept as a sort of "just in case" you do have a problem, windows can use the data in this folder to help fix them. I got the impression that when things are working normally most of the data in this folder was essentially erroneous and served little purpose.

    I wouldn't mind if the folder was <5 Gb, but like i keep saying, 12Gb-20Gb or higher just seems to inefficient. How badly do you have to design a piece of software so that inside of 3-4 years it literally has to double it's size just to remain stable?!

    I never knew this was an issue with Windows7 before this, I am quite surprised that people don't complain about this more...


    I googled it for you
    http://www.thewindowsclub.com/winsxs-folder-windows-7-8
  8. Thanks, I found 20 different pages giving same info about cleaning it and got annoyed.

    Would it really be such a problem for windows just to reacquire a driver for an application if it were missing? So long as the drivers windows itself needs aren't removed.

    It sounds like uninstalling as many programs as possible, cleaning the registry and then running the Disk Cleanup again could reduce the size further maybe?

    The problem is that I run a lot of Autodesk software which installs a lot of different components and stuff, and I really don't know what is okay to remove. Also I spoke to a friend yesterday and her winsxs was 23Gb and I know for a fact that compared to me she has almost nothing installed on her PC. So I wonder how much cleaning up would really help anyway...

    What also annoys me about this is that it isn't cautioned by windows at all. I could have chosen to install windows on a dedicated 30Gb partition, then where would I be?!
  9. The size of the WinSXS directory is illusory. It consists largely of links to files elsewhere on the system, which occupy minimal space. The tools that you are using to display the size of the directory cannot cope with this so add up the sizes of the files as if they were physically stored in the directory.

    A tool to determine the true size of the directory, and instructions on how to reduce it, are given here: https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/hardware/dn898537(v=vs.85).aspx
  10. Thanks!! This is much more understandable!! Sadly the more in depth analytical tools aren't available in windows 7, only 8.1 and higher :(

    I read this but can't quite get my head around if windows is counting that folder as 10Gb when actually it is only 5Gb, whether that 5Gb difference is actually available for other things or not.

    To explain: My SSD shows total of 119Gb, lets say windows counts my winsxs as 19Gb, but actually it is only 5Gb in real terms. If all the rest of the data on my disk added up to 100Gb exactly (including all the files linked in the winsxs), will windows will still tell me my disk is full and prevent me from installing anything else? It won't actually let me add another 14Gb of data on it, or will it? Because sadly if the former is the case whether it is an illusion or not, the space is still unavailable.

    Maybe I seem a little to fixed on this issue but I have this problem generally. Data storage costs money... it costs US money as the end-user, and I sometimes feel that certain software companies are very gung-ho about how much space they are prepared to use, and so often because it benefits them, not us.
  11. That 14Gb of data is available for use. Links are much more common in the Unix world than Windows, but the WinSXS directory is one important place where you will find them.
Ask a new question

Read More

Windows Windows 7 Disk Cleanup