[2020 Updated] How to Delete Temporary Files on Windows 10

Looking to free up space on your Windows PC?  Deleting the temporary files is a good choice. Temporary files take up a lot of space on the hard drive if not cleaned regularly. There are many ways to delete temporary files. Read on to find how.

1Things You Need to Know before Deleting Temporary Files

What Are Temporary Files?

Temporary files are created by Windows operating system and they get automatically deleted when they are no longer needed. By default, temporary files are stored on the hard drive partition on which Windows is installed. There are a number of circumstances in which these files are created:

  • When you undo edits that you have made in applications like Excel or Word.

  • When the physical RAM is insufficient and applications need more memory.

  • When you print a document or file.

  • When you browse the internet and your web browser caches web pages and stores your browsing history.

Why Should You Delete Temporary Files in Windows PC?

Although temporary files are supposed to be automatically deleted when they are no longer needed, sometimes they do not. When no longer needed, these files just sit on your hard drive taking up a lot of space. There are a number of reasons why you should delete temporary files:

  • Speed of access. When you delete temporary files related to a certain application, the speed of access to that application significantly increases.

  • Temporary files take up a lot of storage space. Cleaning those files not only frees up space but also increases hard disk speed/performance.

  • Some temporary files contain valuable information. Deleting them is recommended to protect your privacy.

2How to Delete Temporary Files in Windows 10?

The following methods are available for Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7.

1Delete Temporary Files on Windows 10 Using CMD

One of the quickest ways to delete temporary files in Windows is using a specific command in the Command Prompt: del /q/f/s %TEMP%\*


You can store that command in a .BAT file so that you don't have to input it every time you need to delete temporary files. Follow these instructions:

  • 1. Launch Notepad and create a new .txt file and input this command: del /q/f/s %TEMP%\*

  • 2. Save this .txt document and change its extension from .txt to .BAT.

  • 3. Now you simply need to double-click on the .BAT file and the temporary files will be deleted via Command Prompt.

2Delete Temporary Files Using Settings on Windows 10

On Windows 10, it is possible to delete temporary files manually or automatically via the Settings app. Follow these instructions to manually delete temporary files on Windows 10 via Settings:

  • 1. Launch Settings and navigate to System > Storage.

  • 2. Now find and click on the 'Free up space now' option.

  • 3. On the next screen, choose the files that you wish to delete e.g. Windows upgrade log files, temporary files, thumbnails, recycle bin, Delivery Optimization Files, etc. After selecting the desired files, click the Remove files button to delete those files.


3Automatically Delete Temporary Files Using Storage Sense

Storage sense is a great feature of Windows 10 /8/7 that allows you to automatically free up space by deleting temporary files. Follow these instructions to automatically delete temporary files via Storage sense:

  • 1. Launch Settings on your computer.

  • 2. Navigate to System > Storage.

  • 3. Now find and turn on the Storage sense option. Windows 10 will now automatically delete temporary files. If you want to schedule automatic cleanup, then use the Change how we free space option.


4Delete Temporary Files in Windows 10 Using Disk Cleanup

Another method to delete temporary files on Windows is to use the Disk Cleanup utility. It has been specifically designed to free up disk space when required. Follow these instructions to delete temporary files via Disk Cleanup:

  • 1. Open File Explorer by double-clicking on This PC.

  • 2. Now right-click on the drive on which the Windows is installed and select Properties > Disk Cleanup.

  • 3. Next, click the Cleanup system files button and then choose the items that you want to delete. After that, click OK > Delete Files to start the cleanup process.


What If You Delete Some Important Temp Files?

If you have accidentally deleted some important files during the temporary files deletion process and now want to recover them, then you will be glad to know that it is possible via iMyFone AnyRecover data recovery tool. Simply install AnyRecover on your computer, scan the drive/folder of your choice, and preview and recover the desired files.

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Temporary files on a Windows PC take up a lot of storage space and should be deleted from time to time for a number of reasons. There are a number of ways to delete those files. You can delete them via CMD, Settings app, Storage sense, or Disk Cleanup. And if you have deleted some important files in the process, don't worry; you can easily recover them via iMyFone AnyRecover.

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By  Simon Marcus , to Deleted Files Recovery

Updated on Dec 17, 2019

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