I just freed 3GB from my hard drive and now, 5 minutes later, I got the warning "you're running on extremely low disk space". How can I find out which program is eating up my disk that fast? Thanks.

  • 2
    You might mention which version of Windows you are using – Moab Nov 29 '10 at 22:51
  • I used DiskMonger and found out that it was an Oracle database trace file that had eaten up the disk. – Martin Jan 29 '11 at 3:43

An excellent way to trace back such problems is Process Explorer, a Task Manager alternative/replacement hosted and endorsed by Microsoft itself.

Another option might be to use a program like WinDirStat to see which file/directory is eating up your disk space.


If it is writing 3GB in 5 min, you can open task manager, select the Performance Tab, and press the "Resource Monitor" button. (assuming Windows 7 or Vista)

On the window that opens, select the Disk tab, and expand both "Processes with Disk Activity" and "Disk Activity".

You can sort by Total, or Write, and you should see what Process is writing to the disk the most.


How big is your drive?
Has the 3Gb definitely been used by something?
Take a look at this URL discussing what causes that warning http://blogs.msdn.com/b/oldnewthing/archive/2010/11/17/10092277.aspx


If its not a process thand take that is using up your space, it could be your page file (the file Windows uses for virtual memory, usually sits on the root of whatever drive hosts your operating system). If the page file is choked and can't allocate all the virtual memory space it wants, it will wait for space to clear up at space. You can try reducing your page file size in System properties under 'Virtual Memory' or move the page file to another drive if you have one.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

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