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Cleaning Out Your PC

When using our devices, we often tend to delete specific files that we don't want anymore. However, simply "deleting" these files doesn't really do anything in regards to our storage. When you "delete" something, it's not deleted permanently; in fact, you can even see the files that you deleted in the "Trash" or "Deleted" folders on your phone. This is so that if you do happen to change your mind about deleting something, you can always get it back quickly. But when we delete a file, we usually want it deleted permanently, and these "Trash" or "Deleted" file are taking up space in our device's storage. So what can we do about it?

Empty Recycle Bin / Trash

Depending on your computer, deleted file files go to either your Recycle Bin or Trash.

  • Windows: There should be an icon with a trash bin icon with the recycling logo on it. Right-click it and click Empty Recycle Bin.

  • Mac: There should be a trash bin icon on your Dock. Right-click it and click Empty Trash.

Deleting Temporary / Cached Files

Temporary files are usually just data that helps the computer's programs and applications run faster. However, these files take up a lot of space over time, and if the area is more important than speed for you, you might consider deleting some of these files. Sometimes some of these files contain data of applications that you don't even use anymore.

  • Windows: Go to Settings > System > Storage > Temporary Files. Then, you can delete the files you don't want.

  • Mac: Open up Finder, then press Shift + Command + G; this will open up the Go to the folder search bar. Type ~/Library/Caches/ and click Go (or press Enter) in the search bar. Then you can delete the cached files as you please.

Delete Hibernation File / Sleepimage

What is a Hibernation File? When you put your computer to sleep, the computer saves the information you were doing before the sleep inside a file to restore the state in which you left off. This is true for both Windows and Mac, and each has a different way of deleting these files.

  • Windows: Open up either Command Prompt (Admin) or Windows PowerShell (Admin) by either clicking the Start button or pressing the Windows Key + X. Then, in the terminal, type the following command: powercfg.exe /hibernate off. This will turn hibernation off.

  • Mac: Open up the Terminal application by pressing Command + Space Bar, type Terminal, and press Enter. In the terminal, type the following command: ls -LH /private/var/VM/sleepimage. If you see something like this:

-rw—-T 1 root wheel 1.0G Oct 5 08:55 /private/var/VM/sleepimage

It means that there is a sleepimage file taking up space. To delete this type, the following command:

sudo rm /private/var/VM/sleepimage

This will ask you for your password, enter it, and then the file will be deleted.


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