Windows 10 and the mystery of missing disk space


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n_K

Until today, I happily had a dual-boot system with linux and windows, suddenly today, windows just died in the most ridiculous way I've ever seen with an inaccessible boot device error - no drives had been changed or removed, the boot drive was fully accesssible, no files had be removed, in linux I could browse all driver and queried the drive's SMART status, no read/write errors, no relocated sectors. Tried many ways to fix it using bcdboot, bcdedit, etc. but was just unavailable to get the POS working, so since it was build 1903 I thought sod it, might as well do a fresh install of 20H2, seemed to go well, but that leads me to my problem...

 

The windows partition is 51.4GB, windows explorer shows there as being 3.94GB free which does not tally with any kind of reality. If I select all files on the drive (with hidden and OS files set to be shown) and get the properties, the total size comes to 43.4GB (43.6GB size on disk), 51.4 - 43.6 = 7.8GB. If I boot to linux and check everything, I have 12GB free, I've even tried dd'ing /dev/zero to a file and yes, there is 12GB free. I have a mechanical drive and that has the system page file on it though for some reason there's still a 256MB page file on the SSD partition despite advanced system settings showing it as disabled.

 

So what the hell is going on here? Why is my 12GB lost and only showing as 4GB? System has 16GB RAM and I've verified that there is no hidden hibernate file. Even chkdsk disagrees with windows explorer:

53963323 KB total disk space.
43071256 KB in 139370 files.
   97792 KB in 36943 indexes.
       0 KB in bad sectors.
  396243 KB in use by the system.
   65536 KB occupied by the log file.
10398032 KB available on disk.

So at this point I'm at a loss as to why what I'm seeing in windows doesn't tally with checkdisk nor linux, any ideas on this?

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margrave

Maybe?

 

 Dism.exe /online /Cleanup-Image /StartComponentCleanup

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n_K
9 hours ago, goretsky said:

Hello,

 

Perhaps Windows Reserved Storage? https://www.neowin.net/news/the-next-version-of-windows-10-will-reserve-at-least-7gb-of-storage-for-updates/

 

Regards,

 

Aryeh Goretsky

 

Brilliant! Still not the 10GB I thought there would be but 7.3GB is good enough. What a stupid feature to enable by default, thanks!

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Brandon H
Just now, n_K said:

Brilliant! Still not the 10GB I thought there would be but 7.3GB is good enough. What a stupid feature to enable by default, thanks!

makes sense to me when you factor in build upgrades. can't upgrade to a newer build via windows update if there isn't at least that much space available.

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+warwagon

There are a lot of Windows tablets and laptops with a criminal 32GB of storage. lets just say major windows version upgrade aren't happening, unless they reserve some space. Which obviously isn't going to leave the user with much after reinstall.

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n_K
1 hour ago, Brandon H said:

makes sense to me when you factor in build upgrades. can't upgrade to a newer build via windows update if there isn't at least that much space available.

I've hit that issue before and when I encounter it, I can move stuff off for a while, do the upgrade, then move it back - not an issue for me. What is an issue is 4GB being stolen and fakely reserved 100% of the time for nothing

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+warwagon
37 minutes ago, n_K said:

I've hit that issue before and when I encounter it, I can move stuff off for a while, do the upgrade, then move it back - not an issue for me. What is an issue is 4GB being stolen and fakely reserved 100% of the time for nothing

Yes, you are intelligent enough to do that. The average person isn't and their device gets stuck forever on an old version of windows 10 with no updates.

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