Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I'm trying to upgrade my Windows 7 to Windows 8 and the installer told me I need at least 16 Gb of free space on the C partition.

I've already used most of the common tricks of freeing up space on C (most of them found right here, in other similar questions). Here's a list of what I have tried so far:

  • using the windows Disk Cleanup tool
  • using CCleaner
  • uninstalling most of the software
  • cleaning up my desktop and the stuff inside My Documents
  • cleaning up temp files
  • disabling hibernation
  • the 'recovering lost disk space after installing windows 7 sp1 pack' trick

I'm also going to defragment the partition as soon as CCleaner finishes up his job.

Things I haven't tried: - uninstalling windows updates. I don't think this would be a good idea

Right now I have 12.4 Gb free out of 38.9 for my C partition and maybe, just maybe I'll reach 13 after I finish everything.

I do have some free space on other partitions (I have two hard drives in total), but no unallocated space. I understood that I can increase the size of C:/, but I don't know how safe it would be in my case.

What other things can I do without messing up my current version of Windows 7? Are there some window related files that I can safely delete (like fonts) or maybe move on another partition until the upgrade is done?

I also have a hidden ESD folder on C containing installing files for Windows 8 that I already have on my bootable USB drive but again, I don't know if it's safe to delete them?

Do any of you have some more suggestions? Most of the stuff found on Google is related to what I've already done...

share|improve this question
Why don't you cut across all files to a back up drive as well. Then, when the upgrade is complete you can copy them back over, or buy another hard drive? – Dave Jan 6 '13 at 20:11
Unfortunately I don't have a back up drive and for the time being, my budget won't allow me to buy another hard drive :( – BBog Jan 6 '13 at 20:14
Use GParted to shrink adjacent partitions (on the same physical drive) that have adequate free space and extend the Windows system partition. – Karan Jan 7 '13 at 0:06
Why not compress the files and folders then to see if that helps. – Dave Jan 7 '13 at 6:37

I had this exact problem once. I did most of what you did and, in addition I disabled the page file, which will add several GB free space, however this will annoy Windows and potentially run slowly. It did get me to pass the free space check though, and Windows 8 installed without any trouble.

share|improve this answer
  1. Open "My Computer"

  2. Right click and select "Properties"

  3. On the left side, select "Advanced System Settings"

  4. On the top, select the "System Protection" tab

  5. Select the C drive, and click "Configure"

  6. On the bottom, click "Delete". The process might take a while.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.