Both, the PendingDeletes and the PendingRenames folder within the windows temp folder are about 1GB in size. Is there any save way to empty or delete those folders?

C:\Windows\WinSxS >10GB C:\Windows\WinSxS\Temp\PendingDeletes 800MB C:\Windows\WinSxS\Temp\PendingRenames 210MB

I have no pending installation. My operating system is Windows8.1 Is there any way to cleanup the WinSxS folder as a whole? I already used the clean-up utility when right clicking the disk. But did not change much!

Thanks in advance

  • 1
    You mean "shouldn't"? Overall there is no logical explanation why a plain Windows installation that is not use that much, consumes more than 20GB on the disk.
    – Matthias
    Jan 10 '16 at 21:16
  • 1
    Use disk cleanup to remove windows updates and service pack backup files, this will reduce WinSxS quite a bit. It is the Only safe way to reduce WinSxS folder
    – Moab
    Jan 10 '16 at 21:28
  • WinSxS is a touchy folder. You can easily brick your system if you are not careful.
    – whs
    Jan 10 '16 at 21:32
  • @moab. as I said, I used that cleanup tool already. Did not change much.
    – Matthias
    Jan 10 '16 at 21:43
  • That's all you can do safely.
    – Moab
    Jan 10 '16 at 22:06

The safe way to clean up WinSxS is with Windows' Deployment Image Servicing and Management (DISM). Running the following in an elevated CMD prompt should theoretically remove some of the excess baggage:

DISM /online /Cleanup-Image /StartComponentCleanup

However, for that task to complete, TrustedInstaller must be running, which is not set up in Windows 8 by default. To run TrustedInstaller, you may need to first enable TelnetServer, then enter

net start TrustedInstaller

After DISM runs successfully (on my PC, I found that DISM worked only when Windows was started in Safe Mode), you may want to disable TelnetServer and stop TrustedInstaller.

After all this folderol, you may find only a modest reduction in the size of WinSxS. In my case, it was reduced from ~10 GB to ~7 GB. sigh.

[It is a great deal easier to use Janitor to clean up old Linux installations and updates, aka "cruff", but Windows is not Linux.]

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