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1 TB hard drive showing 90+% full with less than 500 GB used

I built a new system last year and transferred the data from my old 500GB drive over to my new 1TB drive (approx. 400 GB of data) and haven't installed much else since, but recently my HD has been showing as being more and more full when I haven't been adding anything new to it, and this week it's showed over 800 GB used in the drive properties.

Today I ran WinDirStat and it showed 461 GB used, which seems about right so I started a defrag and it showed 11% free space when I analyzed the drive so I had it run while I went out for a few hours, when I got back the defrag window showed 5% free space remaining and 11 hours left from the 2 hours it showed when it started so I canceled it.

My first thought was that my HD may be going bad, it's less than 6 months old so it's still under warranty at least but I'm hoping this isn't the case. Can anyone think of anything else that may be causing this issue?
12 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about hard drive showing full 500
  1. Plz scan your drive for any malware or virus attack.
  2. I have avast set to auto scan every week and it hasn't found anything, but granted that's a quick scan so I'll set it for a full system scan and let it run when I go to bed.
  3. Before running scan, plz update your antivirus.
  4. That was the first thing I did, but I have it set to autoupdate once a week so it's kept pretty well up to date on it's own.

    However I think I found what the problem is, I decided to give SpaceSniffer and try just to see if it would find anything WDS missed and boy did it ever. 2 files, one of them 186 GB and the other 165 GB. I have UAC disabled and it still tells me I don't have permission to modify them, or even access C:\system volume information where it says they reside. I have hidden folders and files set to show and I don't even see that folder listed in my C drive.

    Both have names like {73cd7b13-9850-11e4-9a50-60a44c62cc2f}{3808876b-c176-4e48-b7ae-04046e6cc752} and from what I remember that looks like a legit system file name, but I've never heard of any being that huge.
  5. Looks to me some sort of malware leftover in this case. If you have backup of Windows then start your PC in safe mode command prompt and use del command to get rid of these files and see if it works.
  6. Best answer
    Those sound like System Restore Points. I would strong recommend that you don't use the del command to get rid of them. Have a look at this article which shows you how to delete them and how to manage the amount of space they are allowed to use: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-gb/windows7/how-much-disk-space-does-system-restore-require
  7. System restore points with this much size!
  8. If these files are system restore points then still something is wrong here. Would two files mean two different restore points or single restore point splitted in multiple files. Also, being system restore points, del command won't on them for these being system files without attrib -s
  9. Shadow Copies are another possibility: http://www.fots.nl/index.php/how-to-reclaim-storage-from-system-volume-information/

    As these files are in System Volume Information they are far more likely to be system managed files than the result of malware (particularly on a system with regular scans for malware). Rather than dismissing the possibility out of hand there is an easy way to determine if this is the cause - use the Windows tools mentioned in the links to check.

    Deleting files or directories that you don't recognize, without first making an attempt to determine what they are, is a recipe for disaster.

    Edit: This thread may also be of interest as it relates to this very problem and has contributions from Microsoft Support Engineers.
  10. Ijack said:
    Those sound like System Restore Points. I would strong recommend that you don't use the del command to get rid of them. Have a look at this article which shows you how to delete them and how to manage the amount of space they are allowed to use: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-gb/windows7/how-much-disk-space-does-system-restore-require


    This was indeed what it was, I know I had max disk usage for system restore points set at 10% but it somehow got bumped up to 50%.

    Thank you both for the help.
  11. Ijack said:
    Shadow Copies are another possibility: http://www.fots.nl/index.php/how-to-reclaim-storage-from-system-volume-information/

    As these files are in System Volume Information they are far more likely to be system managed files than the result of malware (particularly on a system with regular scans for malware). Rather than dismissing the possibility out of hand there is an easy way to determine if this is the cause - use the Windows tools mentioned in the links to check.

    Deleting files or directories that you don't recognize, without first making an attempt to determine what they are, is a recipe for disaster.

    Edit: This thread may also be of interest as it relates to this very problem and has contributions from Microsoft Support Engineers.


    That was very informative. Thanks for sharing. :)
  12. Waxfruit said:
    Ijack said:
    Those sound like System Restore Points. I would strong recommend that you don't use the del command to get rid of them. Have a look at this article which shows you how to delete them and how to manage the amount of space they are allowed to use: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-gb/windows7/how-much-disk-space-does-system-restore-require


    This was indeed what it was, I know I had max disk usage for system restore points set at 10% but it somehow got bumped up to 50%.

    Thank you both for the help.


    Good Luck.
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