~/posts/keeping-your-c-drive-slim

Background

I recently reset my PC, partly because my C drive was constantly full which was a constant headache that prevented me from updating Windows.

These are some of the measures I took to keep my C drive slim this time around.

UWP Apps

Windows offers a nice solution for this problem for its UWP apps (apps you install from the Microsoft Store). Open your Start menu and search for 'Storage settings.' Then under 'More storage settings,' click on 'Change where new content is saved.' You can now choose which drive various new content will be saved, including apps, documents, and photos. Changing the file type folders will move your user profile's Documents, Pictures, etc. folders to the drive you specify. I chose to change all of them to use my D drive.

This will not affect existing apps, but fortunately there's a pretty easy way to move existing UWP apps to the same drive. Open your Start menu again and search for 'Apps & features.' Now select the 'Filter by' dropdown and choose your C drive. Now scroll through the list of apps and click on any UWP apps. You can select the 'Move' option to move them to another drive. Unfortunately, Windows won't allow you to move some of the core Windows apps this way.

Chocolatey

Chocolatey is a great way to install programs and has the added benefit of keeping all the programs it installs in the same place under its own install directory. Therefore, to keep those apps off your C drive, you need only install Chocolatey off your C drive. To do this, you need to tell Chocolatey where to install before installling it. Open your Start menu and search for 'Edit the system environment variables' and click the 'Environment Variables...' button. Now in the System variables section, add a ChocolateyInstall variable and set the value to be the directory you want Chocolatey to be installed in. For example, I chose to put mine in D:\programs\Chocolatey. Now you can install Chocolatey.

Scoop

Scoop is another great package manager for Windows, which works in a similar fashion to Chocolatey. Before installing it, add another system environment variable called SCOOP and set its value to be the directory you want scoop installed in. I chose to put mine in D:\programs\scoop. Now you can install Scoop.

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