If you have upgraded from Windows 10 to Windows 11 recently and are feeling that a lot of drive space has been claimed by Windows 11 installation, then you might not be wrong. During the upgrade it saves the older installation (Windows 10) so that you can roll back to Windows 10 if your want. These files can take multiple gigabytes of drive space on your PC. If you have no intention of rolling back to Windows 10, then you can remove these temporary files using the Disk Cleanup tool and reclaim all the drive space.
Here is how you can clean temporary files from a Windows 11 PC:
- Press the Win+R key combination to open the Run dialog.
- In the Run dialog, type cleanmgr and press Enter.
- In the Disk Cleanup tool that opens up, choose the drive that you want to clean. If you have only one C: drive then it is already selected. If you have more than one drive (e.g., C: and D:) then you have to choose the C: drive because most of the junk files are located on this drive.
- If you want to clean only the temporary files then you can choose the different categories such as downloaded program files, temporary internet files, DirectX shader files etc., and then click on the OK button. It will show a confirmation dialog before deleting the files from your PC.
- If you want to free up more space, click on Clean up system files which will relaunch the Disk Cleanup tool with administrator level access.
- Choose the various categories of junk files that you want to remove and then click on the OK button. You will be asked whether you really want to delete the selected files. You have to click on the Delete Files button to finally remove all the files.
Using this method, you may recover multiple gigabytes of drive space on your PC. If you have upgraded from Windows 10 to Windows 11, then you may recover a lot of drive space by removing Windows Update files.