6 Tips to Fix Recovery Drive Full in Windows 10/8/7

Tracy King updated on Sep 23, 2020 to Partition Manager | How-to Articles

How to Fix Recovery Drive Full Error in Windows 10/8/7 (6 Ways)

"Low Disk Space. You're running out of disk space on recovery d drive. Click here to see if you can free up space on this drive." Whenever you stuck in recovery drive full error, follow these solutions below:

Workable Solutions Step-by-step Troubleshooting
Tip 1. Extend recovery partition To start extending partition, you should first launch EaseUS Partition Master and locate the target partition...Full steps
Tip 2. Free up space Download EaseUS Tools M for free and install it on your computer. Select "Large File Cleanup"...Full steps
Tip 3. Disable system protection Right-click on "This PC"/"My Computer" and choose "Properties" and then click...Full steps
Tip 4. Unhide protected files Open Windows Control Panel and navigate to File Explorer Options in Windows...Full steps
Tip 5. Run disk cleanup In the search box on the taskbar, type disk cleanup, and select "Disk Cleanup"...Full steps
Tip 6. Delete recovery drive On EaseUS Partition Master, right-click on the hard drive partition which you want to delete...Full steps

Low Space Warning - Recovery D Drive Almost Full Error

If you are a Dell or HP user, you might have the same experience below:

"My recovery disk of 16GB on my HP laptop is full due to the preload folder using all the space. I can't open this folder but get the following messages that I'm running out of recovery disk space and files are continuously copied into the preload folder. This even slows down my PC. So I'm wondering whether I can free up the recovery disk and solve the "Recovery Disk Space Is Full" error with ease in Windows 10?"

So how to fix the recovery disk full issue in Windows 10? Below, you'll find 6 effective methods to free up the recovery disk and solve the recovery disk full issue in Windows 10.

Tip 1. Extend Recovery Partition to Fix Recovery Drive Full Error

When your recovery partition gets full, or you receive the low disk space warning, the easiest way to solve this kind of problem is to extend the partition. Most free partition tools allow you to merge unallocated space or free space to the recovery drive. If there is no unallocated space or the space is not contiguous, you'll need EaseUS Partition Master.

This partition magic tool makes it easy to merge unallocated or free space to the recovery drive regardless of the location of the space. What's more, it has many highlights:

  • Adjust a partition to a larger or smaller one for your need.
  • Merge partitions without losing data.
  • Clone/migrate partition to the unallocated space.
  • Migrate OS to SSD to speed up Windows.

Steps to extend the recovery partition:

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 Windows 10 is supported

Step 1. Locate the Target Partition

To start extending partition, you should first launch EaseUS Partition Master and locate the target partition which you would like to extend.

Step 2. Extend the Target Partition

1. Right-click on the target partition which you would like to extend and select "Resize/Move".

Select target partition to extend

2. Drag the partition panel rightward or leftward to add unallocated space into your current partition and click "OK" to confirm.

choose another drive to allocate space

3. If there is no or not enough unallocated space on your disk, use the advanced partition resizing function to directly allocate free space from other partitions to the target drive without deleting or formatting.

Find the "Allocate XX space from" option, then click "Select partition". Choose the partition from which you want to allocate space. Drag the partition panel rightward or leftward to resize the partition you want to extend. Then click "OK" to confirm.

choose another drive to allocate space

Step 3. Execute Operations to Extend Partition

Click the "Execute Operation" button and click "Apply" to keep all the changes. 

finish extending partition

Tip 2. Free Up Space on Recovery Drive Windows 10 to Fix It

If your recovery drive D, E, or F gets the low space error, you can free up space to solve the problem. My suggestion is to clean up large files. You can quickly get rid of large files with a free tool - EaseUS Tools M. Feel free to download this software and free up recovery disk now:

Step 1. DOWNLOAD EaseUS Tools M for free and install it on your computer.

Step 2. Launch EaseUS Tools M in Windows PC. Select "Large File Cleanup" on the main screen.

large file cleanup - 1

Step 3. Select the drive and click "Scan" to let the program locate, find all large files on your disk.

large file cleanup - 2

Step 4. Identify and select useless large files and click "Delete" to remove those files from your PC or laptop. A message pops up and tells you this process will permanently delete the files. Click "Yes" to start the process.

large file cleanup - 3

Tip 3. Disable System Protection to Fix Recovery Drive Full

To stop Low Disk Space errors, ensure that System Protection is turned off for the Recovery drive in Windows 10/8.1/8/7. Then, remove files that are not related to system recovery from the drive. 

In Windows 10/8.1/8/7:

Step 1. Right-click on "This PC"/"My Computer" and choose "Properties" and then click "System Protection".

Step 2. Click on the "Configure" button under the System Protection tab.

Step 3. Check whether the recovery partition is off or on. 

If it shows On, select this drive and click the "Configure" button. In the pop-up window, check the Disable system protection option. 

disable system protection

Tip 4. Unhide Protected Operating System Files

Some users say they are faced with a "hard drive full but not" error, and the recovery drive D is no expectation. Hidden files may cause this. You can try to unhide files and folders to determine whether hidden items occupy the disk space of the recovery drive.

Step 1. Open Windows Control Panel and navigate to File Explorer Options in Windows 10, 8.1, and 8.

Step 2. On the File Explorer Options window, select "Change folder and search options".

Step 3. In the Folder Options window, check "Show hidden files, folders, and drives and remove Hide protected operating system files (Recommended)". 

show hidden files

Tip 5. Run Disk Cleanup to Fix Recovery Drive Full

The recovery drive is a separate partition stored on your PC that contains all the files needed in order for you to be able to fully restore your PC if your system becomes unstable for some reason. You can clean up useless files to solve the low disk space error.

Step 1. In the search box on the taskbar, type disk cleanup, and select "Disk Cleanup" from the list of results.

Step 2. Select the drive you want to clean up, and then select "OK".

Step 3. Select the checkbox next to the type of files you want to delete.

Step 4. Press OK and wait for the process to be completed.

run disk clean up

Tip 6. How to Delete Recovery Drive D in Windows 10/8/7

As I have mentioned before, a recovery partition can be used to restore your system in the event of system issues. But if you have had a system backup in advance, this method is the best choice. You can manually delete an OEM partition or use EaseUS partition software. Here are the steps:

Download Now

 Windows 10 is supported

If you saved important data in the partition which you want to delete, move and save those data to another secure location in advance.

Step 1: Select partition to delete

On EaseUS Partition Master, right-click on the hard drive partition which you want to delete and select "Delete".

Select parittion to delete

Step 2: Confirm the deletion

Click "OK" to confirm that you want to delete the selected partition.

Confirm to delete partition

Step 3: Execute to delete the partition

Click the "Execute Operation" button at the top corner and keep all changes by clicking "Apply".

Complete the deleting process

What Is a Recovery Drive/Partition in Windows 10/8/7 (Bonus Tip)

Have you ever noticed that your computer often has a recovery partition on your system disk? A recovery partition helps to restore the factory settings of the OS (operating system) if there is some kind of system failure. A recovery partition usually has no drive letter, and only a Help option is provided in Disk Management. Generally, there are two types of recovery partitions.

One is the most widespread one. It is installed with the Windows operating system on a GPT disk and holds the Windows Recovery Environment. This partition only takes up several hundred MB disk space, as it only contains the bare operating system.

The other is set by the computer manufacturer (like HP, Dell, Lenovo). This kind of recovery partition occupies more space than the Windows recovery partition and is usually marked as OEM Partition. With this recovery partition, you can restore the computer to factory default settings, including OS, drivers, and some build-in applications.

what is a recovery partition in Windows


When you find Recovery drive full in Windows 10, 8.1, 8, or 7, you have six solutions for corresponding situations. EaseUS partition magic tool plays a vital role in this process. It also helps you copy the HP Recovery partition to a new drive if the need ever arises.

Download Now

 Windows 10 is supported

Recovery Drive Full Frequently Asked Questions

If you use the Recovery drive to store files, or if a backup or restore program uses the Recovery drive to store files, the drive quickly becomes full and can cause the recovery drive full errors. You can solve them with the help of the six solutions above. If you still have questions, you can read on.

1. How do I free up space on my recovery drive?

You can free up space on your recovery drive in two ways:

  • Use EaseUS Tools M
  • Try Disk Cleanup

2. Why is my recovery drive full?

As you know, recovery drive actually refers to a partition on the main hard disk, not an actual and physical drive. If you store files on this recovery drive or a backup and restore tool writes some files to it, this drive will get full.

3. What happens if I delete my recovery drive?

As to the question "can I delete recovery partition", the answer is definite. You can delete a recovery partition without affecting the running OS. Average users should keep the recovery partition as it is in the hard drive, as such a partition won't take up too much space.

4. How often should I create a recovery drive?

Windows updates to improve security and PC performance periodically so it is recommended to recreate the recovery drive annually. Personal files and any applications that did not come with your PC will not be backed up. You'll need a USB drive that's at least 16GB.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Why Choose EaseUS Partition Master?

"I've used Partition Master Professional many times to create, delete, format, move, rename, and resize partitions."PCWorld

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Will the "Migrate OS" feature transfer the Windows system files only or the whole C drive?

To ensure that the migrated system will boot normally, the Migrate OS feature will transfer all the files in the system and the boot partitions. Generally, the boot partition is the C drive so the transfer will include all the files in C.

Does EaseUS Partition Master license apply to multiple computers?

The license of Partition Master Professional and Server editions can be used on 1 computer only, while that for for the Technician and Unlimited editions can be used on multiple machines.

What is the difference between EaseUS Partition Master Trial version and the Free version?

Free is for home users only, with most basic functions available such as partition resize and clone. While trial can help you understand how this product works and test what a full license can do on a business or server OS machine.

Will it cause any data loss after resizing the partition in EaseUS Partition Master?

Generally, it will not cause any data loss or boot issue by resizing a partition. However, in order to protect your data, we suggest that you backup the partition before resizing, in case of any unexpected situations such as power outages, computer hardware failures, etc. You can use EaseUS Todo Backup to backup the partition and its trial version is fully functioned for 30 days.

What should I prepare before resizing the partition?

On the partition that is going to be operated, there might be some files being occupied by other programs. To ensure a successful operation, we suggest that you close all the unnecessary software before resizing that partition. Otherwise, EaseUS Partition Master will detect the partition being locked by the other software and require a reboot to resize the partition under boot mode.

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Video Tutorial

How to Partititon a Hard Drive on Windows 10/8/7