Solved: What Is Taking Up Space on My Hard Drive in Windows 10/8/7

Tracy King updated on May 07, 2020 to Partition Manager | How-to Articles


Part 1. Find Out What Is Taking Up Space on Hard Drive in Windows 10/8/7
Part 2. Free Up Disk Space [4 Methods]

Something is eating my hard drive space in Windows 10, help!

"About three weeks ago, my 500GB hard drive suddenly became extremely slow and had only 50GB left.
Now the hard drive only has just 100MB left, and I can’t even open the drive to use a file quickly. It looks like something is eating my hard drive space, but I don't know what it could be. 
How can I find out what's taking up space on my hard drive and resolve this issue? Can anyone help? I’m using Windows 10."

Here is a list of problems associated with an underperforming hard drive:

  • Hard drive gets full without reason.
  • Hard drive is inaccessible and even not respond.
  • Computer becomes slow while trying to open the hard drive.
  • Windows system becomes extremely slow on a barely full hard drive.

If you are experiencing one of the listed issues, follow along to figure out what's taking up space on your hard drive and then address the problem and free up your disk space.

Part 1. Find Out What Is Taking Up Space on Hard Drive in Windows

There are two steps you can do to find out what is taking up space on your hard drive:

Step 1. Show hidden files on the hard drive

We have provided a complete guide with three methods to display hidden files on the hard drive.
You can refer to this page for a guide: How to Show Hidden Files on computer hard drive.

Step 2. Analyze hard drive and find what's eating up hard drive space

Here we’ll use Windows 10 as an example to show you how to find out what’s taking up space on your hard drive. 
The provided method can also be applied to Windows 8.1/8/7:

1. Right-click on the Windows icon and select "Settings".

2. Click "System", then click "Storage" on the left-side panel. 

Open Storage settings.

3. In the Storage window, you’ll get a view of the space usage situations on all your hard drive partitions as shown in the image below:

Storage situation of hard drive

4. Then click on a nearly full hard drive partition.
You’ll be able to see what’s taking up the most space on the partition.

Find out what is taking up space on hard drive.

So how to thoroughly free up disk space and make the computer fast? Continue on to Part 2, and you’ll learn the right method to free up disk and speed up your PC.

Part 2. Free Up Disk Space [4 Methods]

After finding up what's is taking most space on your hard drive, you can follow the provided methods here for help:

Method 1. Remove junk files/large useless files 

If you've found that the hard drive space is taken up by many temporary files or useless large files, EaseUS Tools M is an ideal tool. 
It supports cleaning up all hard drive partitions in Windows 10, 8 and 7 with its System Optimize Tool by cleaning up junk files and large files. Install it on your PC now to quickly clear up space on your hard drive and improve the computer performance:

Step 1. DOWNLOAD and install EaseUS Tools M. Select "System Cleanup" on the main screen.

click system cleanup

Step 2. Select the type of junk files you want to scan and click "Analyze".

analyze junk files

Step 3. Identify and select useless files and click "Clean up" to remove those files from your PC or laptop.

click clean up to remove junk files

You may also click Clean Large Files to remove useless large files. 

Method 2. Free up space by storing files on another hard drive or the cloud

If you have some important large files that are occupying big space on a hard drive, you can try one of the tips below:

Tip 1: Add a new disk to your PC, move and store files to the new disk.

Tip 2: Store files to an external storage device.

Tip 3: Store files to a cloud account.

Tip 4: Back up big files into an image with a compressed format, which will save almost a half space on your disk.

Method 3. Transfer programs, apps, and games to another hard drive

If your hard drive is full of installed programs, applications and games, you can change the install location of these programs. 
How to do that?

You may follow this page for a guide: Transfer installed program to a new hard drive

Method 4. Manually clean up hard drive 

This method is based on Step 2 in Part 1: manually cleaning after checking what’s taking up space on the hard drive. 
You can continue and follow the tips below to manually clean up a hard drive by removing temporary files, useless apps, etc.

Step 1: Click each hard drive partition, check what is taking space on your disk.

Let's take C drive for example: Click C drive and figure out what’s taking up space.

Check what's taking up space on C drive

Step 2: Clear apps, programs, files, etc that are taking up space on hard drive.

Click each category and remove useless apps, files, etc.


Repeat the process again until all the hard drive partitions are checked and freed up of useless data.

Now you've learned to check what is taking up space on your Windows hard drive and methods to clear and speed up hard drive. However, there is no one-for-all solution. These problems will return again, so remember to use these methods to clear up your disk regularly.


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