I have yet another problem with the System Volume Information folder on my machine. I'm using Windows 10 Home 21H2. The folder occupies ~150GB (that is ~60% of my C: drive)
Among other sources, I used information from here
- Cleaning using CleanMgr.exe (normal & admin)
- Reducing space for Sytem Restore points (to 10%)
- Deleting all System Restores (there were none)
- Disabling System Restore
- Checked Volume Shadow Copy
vssadmin list shadowsreports no shadows exist
vssadmin list shadowstoragereports 0MB used for shadows, max 1% storage for shadows
- Checked Windows Backups
wbadmin get versionsreports no backups
- Tried DiskShadow tool, does not exist (only for Windows Server?)
Nothing helped, size only reduced minimally
I used the FolderSize tool to analyze the storage, and found out that the largest part is occupied by single files with GUIDs as names (there are >100 of them, dating back to the year 2018):
I understand the importance of the System Volume Information folder and you should not mess with it. But from the link above, the relevant data like backups, quotas, deduplication, etc. is stored not in those files. They seem to be Disk Snapshots.
My question: Is it safe to delete those files?
Update from comments:
vssadmin list shadowstorage:
C:\WINDOWS\system32>vssadmin list shadowstorage vssadmin 1.1 - Volume Shadow Copy Service administrative command-line tool (C) Copyright 2001-2013 Microsoft Corp. No items found that satisfy the query.
I checked using a hexeditor, and then a self-made program. ALL files only contain 0-Bytes (many of them of several GBs).
I followed @harrymc advice and moved the files to another folder (using Linux Live USB) and observed the system for several days, if the system runs correctly and if new files appear.
In this time, I used the laptop as usual, hibernated , restarted, shut down, and had a Windows Update installed. I experienced no issues
The files did not reappear.
Also, system checks as pointed out by others (dism, chkdsk, sfc) did not report any issuesI made some statistics, and found out that at the beginning, the files were created back-to-back, so the creation date of a file was the same as the last-written date of a previous file. Then some gaps started to show up (regions where no file existed), of 1-3 days, and recently there were gaps of 1-2 months.
The last file was from 6.10.2022, I moved the files on 12.10.2022 (so ~1 week later).
vssadmin list shadowstorage?
Start-DedupJob -Type GarbageCollection -Priority High -Volume "C:".
Start-DedupJobCmdlet. From what I gather from the resources, deduplication applies only to windows server, but I have Windows 10 home. And as there is no Start-DedupJob, I don't think this is about deduplication garbage...