Windows component repositories can take up a lot of space on the C drive. This section explains how to delete files in the component store to free up space on the C drive.
Windows has a component store. Component Store files, by their very nature, take up a lot of space on your hard disk. In some cases, the component store can take up 4GB to 10GB of hard disk space on the C drive. As you can imagine, this is a lot of free disk space. When disk space is low, the component store can be cleared to free up more space on the C drive.
What is a Component Store file?
For the curious user, a brief explanation is that the Component Store is the WinSxS folder in the C:³³ folder. The Component Store was introduced in Windows XP to manage the various parts and files of the Windows OS. Typically, the files in the component store are responsible for customizing and updating Windows. Windows handles the files in the component store by bundling them as a package. When updates are provided, some of these packages become obsolete. At this time, Windows sets them aside and removes them when needed. If you want to know more about the Component Store, see Microsoft’s detailed documentation .
Normally, Windows will automatically launch a predefined scheduled task to clean files from the Component Store. However, for some reason Windows may skip the execution of a schedule. This results in wasted space in the Component Store. In such cases, you can take it upon yourself to delete files from the Component Store to free up space on the C drive.
Before proceeding with the process, create a system restore point just in case.
Delete the component store files
- Open the Start menu.
- Request the Command Prompt.
- Right click on the command prompt and select “Run as administrator”.
- Insert the following command at the command prompt to see if you actually need to clear the component store.
dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /AnalyzeComponentStore
- If the “Component Store Cleanup Recommended” flag is set to “Yes” then the component store cache must be cleared. Proceed to the next step.
- Enter the following command to start the cleanup process.
dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /StartComponentCleanup
Depending on the size of the component store and the number of old packages, the component store cleanup process may take a long time. Please sit back and relax and wait for the process to complete. Do not shut down or interrupt the process .
In my case, the component store cleanup freed up about 5 GB of space. As you can see, this frees up a lot of space on disk C for other things.
You do not need to do this regularly. Normally, Windows will do the cleanup work for you. However, the Component Store is one place to keep in mind if you are looking for different ways to increase free space in Windows 10.
That’s all for this article. If you liked this article, check out how to delete the windows bt and windows ws folders, how to move the downloads folder, and how to limit Chrome’s cache to free up more space on the C drive.