When applying Windows 10 feature updates or upgrading to a new version of the operating system. Microsoft creates a folder called “Windows.old” to contain a copy of the previous version for recovery purposes.
If the update fails to install or Windows cannot start with the blue screen error, we will use the Windows.old folder. Thanks to this folder, we can return to the previous state.
Windows.old cannot be removed due to an issue in Windows 10
The Windows.old folder can consume up to 20 GB of disk space, but it might be smaller or larger depending on the number of apps, files, and customization included in the previous installation.
To delete the Windows.old folder, Microsoft recommends visiting the Disk Cleanup Tool, where you need to click on the “Clean up system files” button and then select the “Previous Windows installation (s)” option. “.
The tool will automatically calculate the space these files occupy. You can then click “OK” to erase previous files from Windows system and free up storage space. This process is very simple, but it may not work for everyone, according to the tech giant.
In some cases, it will not delete the “Windows.old” folder. Users have been reporting the issue for several months. The bug was first reported and fixed in 2016. But it has reappeared for some users after recent updates.
With this week’s preview, Microsoft says it has finally fixed an issue that prevents the Windows.old folder from being deleted.
“Fixed an issue that prevented the windows.old folder from being completely deleted during disk cleanup,” Microsoft noted in the Windows 10 Build 20257 changelog.
While Microsoft has yet to announce a release date for the Windows.old unreadable folder patch on production channels, it is expected to land later this year or early next year.
If you cannot delete the folder with Disk Cleanup, you can try the following. Go to the Settings app and go to Storage Settings. Under Storage settings, select Temporary files and delete unnecessary files that take up space on the system drive.