I have been uninstalling all of the software that I do not use to free up some space. Now that I'm done running all of the installers is there any easy way to clean up the program data folder without browsing through every sub folder? I know that the software I uninstalled probably left folders and files on my computer and I would like to get rid of them.
Not really. That would require some kind of program that has a (massive) database of leftover files, folders, and registry entires of thousands (millions?) of random, third-party programs. The best you can hope for and “easy, automated” solution is to use a “clean up” program such as CCleaner to scan for for some application residue. The problem is that these tend to have two limitations:
The only scan for known applications (which have to be manually added). They add new ones now and then, but they are still usually only limited to common programs. (Also, some of them let you manually add new programs to the list, but this is irrelevant to your specific question.)
They usually only scan for certain files, folders, and registry entries like temporary files that programs create. They don’t usually scan for files left over after uninstalling a program or user-created document and settings files.
I’m afraid that your best bet is indeed to go through the folders and manually examine them and delete anything you no longer need. It’s not nearly as bad as it seems though; I’ve done it countless times over the years and it’s actually a fairly simple, pseudo-mindless chore that can be done while watching TV or something.
One thing to note however:
ProgramData is the “All Users” data folder, so it applies to all users on the system. This isn’t an issue if you are the only user, but for a shared system (or one in which you have more than one user account), the files will be removed for all users. (Ostensibly it wouldn’t matter since the whole program is gone, but it’s still worth remembering.)
Revo Uninstaller is a free program that searches for registry entries, files and folders left behind by a software program that you uninstall, shows you a list of each and lets you pick and choose which items to delete or delete them all. It really does a great job finding all the junk that different programs leave behind in the registry and on the hard drive.
There is a professional version that does more than the free version, for example, removing remnants left behind by already uninstalled programs, but I find the free version sufficient for basic cleaning and getting rid of left-over junk.
No need to browse through subfolders. Folders in
ProgramData are usually named after the program it was used by or it's publisher, with that specific program's data inside. So in the worst case you'll sometimes have to go one folder deep. You should be done in 3 minutes.
Be careful, though: never delete any files if you're not sure if it's just a junk or something important.
ProgramData usually doesn't take up much space, so usually it's just fine to leave it alone.
I was recently getting rid of MSOCache, Roaming and LocalLow and this. My T100 storage is a 32gb emmc, so no space for anything. What I did was,
- Set the folder view to details
- Sort by date
- Select all
- Unselect what you use most
- Uncheck anything last modified in the last 6 - 12 months
- Delete rest
If the computer is new (bought recently), be careful about local and local roaming low and program data. And while deleting windows will warn you. Take it seriously. All else can go away if your disk is running out of space.