Windows 10 updates bring the latest features and security improvements to your operating system. For this reason, you might want to update your PC regularly. Before starting the installation process, Windows checks to make sure there is enough storage space on your internal drive.
If you don’t have enough disk space, you’ll see a popup message that reads, Windows needs more space. This shouldn’t prevent you from updating your Windows 10 PC. We’ll show you how you can tackle this issue.
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How much disk space do you need to update Windows 10?
According to Microsoft, you need at least 32 GB of free disk space to upgrade to the latest version of Windows 10 – whether you’re using 32 or 64-bit Windows. If you have less than that, you might encounter the “Windows needs more space” error.
On some devices, such as Windows 10 tablets with only 16GB or 32GB of storage, you can save more disk space by installing the Windows 10 operating system CD.
Other than that, here are four ways you can free up hard drive space to allow Windows Update to complete the update.
1. Clean your drive.
When disk space is not enough to update Windows 10, you can create more space by cleaning the drive Windows 10 is installed to. For most people, this is the C drive.
Windows 10 Disk Cleanup tool can help you with that. It will perform a quick scan on your drive for files that you can remove from your computer without making changes to Windows 10.
Using Disk Cleanup Tool is a good way to create enough disk space without affecting your important files. Here’s how you can get started with the tool:
1- Type the command Disk Cleanup in the search bar on the Start menu and select the best match.
2- When the Disk Cleanup: Drive Selection window pops up , select the C: drive and click OK.
3- When the C drive Disk Cleanup window pops up, click Clean up system files .
4- Select all the files you want to delete, and click OK to continue.
To create more disk space on your C: drive, you can manually delete some files that you no longer need.
You can start by removing a folder called Windows.old, which contains all previous data on the previous OS version. This is a folder that is created automatically when you upgrade Windows 10. Only delete the folder if you are completely satisfied with the current version of Windows 10 and have no intention of returning to the old OS.
2. Expand Disk C using Disk Management
If you cannot free up enough disk space on your computer, it is a good idea to extend your drive. This will give you enough space to update Windows 10. Of course, this fix only works if you have unallocated space on your drive, but you can always check and find out.
Here’s how you can expand your drive storage.
1- Type disk part in the Start menu search bar and select the best match.
2- When Disk Management window appears, check if there is unallocated space on your C drive or not. If you have some unallocated space, right-click on the C drive and select Extend Volume to add the unallocated space.
3- Create a larger space using external storage devices
If you do not have enough disk space on your computer, you can use an external storage device to complete the Windows 10 update. For this, you will need an external storage device with free space of about 10 GB or more, depending on how much additional space you need.
To get started, select Start> Settings> Update & Security> Windows Update> Check for updates.
The “Windows needs more space” error message window will pop up. On the Windows Update page, select Fix problems. This will launch the Windows Update tool that allows you to update your computer using an external storage device. From here follow these steps:
1- Connect an external storage device with enough free space to your computer.
2- On the Windows update page, you will see an option for external storage in a drop-down menu. Select your external storage device from the list, then click Next to continue.
3- Follow the instructions on the screen to finish installing the update. Once the installation is complete, you can safely remove the external storage device and restart your computer.
Before using an external storage device to update your computer, make sure to backup your important files.
4. Find and remove unwanted large programs using programs.
You might encounter low disk storage issues due to large files hidden somewhere on your computer. Windows provides several ways to delete unwanted programs, but it might be difficult for you to manually locate some programs. You can easily find and delete large programs using third-party programs.
There are many programs you can use, but we recommend IObit Uninstaller
You can remove all unwanted large programs using the free version of the program. Here’s how to use the program to delete unwanted programs from your computer:
1-Download and install the free version of IObit Uninstaller.
2-Run IObit Uninstaller and select the large programs in the right pane.
3- All your large programs will appear in the right pane. Select all the programs that you want to delete and click the Uninstall button.
4- A window will appear, “Are you sure you want to uninstall the selected programs?” You will have the option to create a restore point and remove the remaining files automatically by checking the relevant boxes. Click Uninstall to complete the process.
Within removing large programs with a tool like IObit Uninstaller there are no folders, files and registry entries left that will take up your disk storage space. However, if you locate large files and do not want to delete them, you can move them to an external storage device or cloud storage to free up some disk space.
Update your Windows 10 PC at any time
Updating your Windows 10 PC is something that you should do regularly. It protects your computer from system crashes and malware attacks. However, you’ll sometimes encounter the “Windows needs more space” error when trying to update Windows 10. The solutions in this article should help you fix that.