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Hard Drive Keeps Losing Disk Space

Posted on May 09, 2018 by Jean to Partition Manager

Summary:
Your hard drive keeps losing disk space even though you did not install new programs or save new files there, especially the system C drive. Where is the much free space going? Read this post and hope can you find the correct answer.

Old users of our website should still remember this popular post titled "hard drive shows wrong capacity", which helped so many people reclaim full capacity of an HDD, USB flash drive or SD card. As the article explained, there are mainly three reasons why your hard drive capacity shows less than the actual size, including a huge hidden recovery partition, computer virus and invisible unallocated space out of the whole disk partition. Nevertheless, hard drive disk space issues are always there and much concerned by people. And in today's post, we're going to discuss the other similar one. Computer hard drive keeps losing space! Here's a user story.

Losing space on my C: drive

"I'm constantly losing space on my C: hard drive. It's for win10 with 50 GB around and the free space decreases very rapidly without installing new programs or saving new files to it. The free space displays itself as 12.6 GB this morning, and later 8.3 GB, 6.1 GB... But this moment it's almost full with only 1.2 GB left! Why does the hard drive keep losing disk space for no reason?"

See? It doesn't make sense if the unused space of your hard drive partition gets lost at the speed of several gigabytes in a day. You must take time to find out the actual reasons and apply the correct solutions.

Reasons & Solutions to Hard Drive Losing Space Rapidly

The rapid loss of hard drive free space on some days is like an accident, and we can determine the causes in much easier ways. But make sure that you follow the given solutions very carefully, they are prone to bring damage to your drive itself.

One. Virus and Malware Infection

Did you install suspicious programs from unknown websites or open an unknown attachment file in an email in recent days? If yes, be alert. It's pretty sure that it's the virus that eats up your hard drive space!

Step 1. You can run the anti-virus software on your computer to scan and remove the virus for the first attempt.
Step 2. If virus removal software doesn't work, try to use cmd to remove the virus from the hard drive.
Step 3. What's the last yet the most powerful way to remove a virus? Fully format the hard drive or do a system restore.

Warning
Hard drive formatting and system restore can somehow kill the stubborn virus, but at the same time, erase your important data. Consider backing up the data before you take the last chance to stop the hard drive from losing the free space very fast.

Two. System Protection

Let's check if the System Restore is turned on, for example, in Windows 10. Go to Control Panel -> System and Security -> System -> System protection. Click the System protection to open System Properties, where you could see the Protection Settings.

Usually, the Protection is set to 'On' for the System drive. And that's how your hard drive lost free space more and more rapidly. This feature is creating and storing your computer system files and settings on a regular basis and kept in restore points, which are large files.

If this is the problem you cared about, you can either choose to directly disable the System protection feature by setting the Protection to 'No', or take the other two steps.

Step 1. Download EaseUS Partition Master Free on your computer. It's a free partition manager for managing your hard disk and partitions, and it's also widely used as a disk cleanup utility. One of the very helpful features is called Cleanup and Optimization, by which you can clean up junk files, clean large files and optimize a disk, all of the three options are meant to fix the 'hard drive losing space' issue efficiently. 

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 Windows 10 is supported

  • By clearing the large system restore points, click Cleanup and Optimization -> Large File Cleanup -> C drive -> Scan.
  • Choose the system files (along with other useless large files) that take up much free space on the hard drive and click Delete.

select large system files and click delete

Step 2. After freeing up the disk space, you may still wish to enable this system protection feature because it plays an important role in future system restore and repair. On the regard, it's a good idea to reduce its disk space usage in this way.

  • In the same way to open System Protection tab and select Local Disk C: (System) under the Protection Settings tab. Click Configure.
  • Turn on system protection there and under the Disk Space Usage section, move the slider to reduce the amount of disk space System Protection can use. As space fills up, older restore points will be deleted to make room for new ones.
  • Click the Apply button.

reduce system restore disk space usage in system protection settings

This is where you can also delete all restore points for this drive. It's estimated that this method will help save at least 10 GB disk space on the target drive. Don't hesitate to have a try.

Three. Hard Drive Malfunctions

How long has the hard drive been working? Is it a secondhand cheap drive? Perhaps it's because the hard drive itself is malfunctioning. Hard drive errors and bad sectors won't store data very correctly since most of the sectors are no longer usable. Undoubtedly, the free space starts decreasing incredibly fast without letting you know.

Step 1. Run EaseUS Partition Master again, right-click the problematic drive and click Check partition. Follow the wizard to finish checking how many bad sectors are there on the drive.

check disk partition for errors

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 Windows 10 is supported

Step 2. If too many bad sectors instead of 0 error found, it's time to follow this guide to fix bad sectors.