Deleting temporary Windows files and folders

How do I delete temporary Windows files and folders?

Windows uses temporary folders to process information and compress files. Emptying them occasionally will prevent too many unneeded files from using space on the hard drive. The following instructions are for Windows XP, Vista, and 7.

For best results, make sure all windows and programs are closed before proceeding:

Delete your Temporary Internet files.

1. In the bottom left corner of your screen, click the Windows Start button (XP) or Windows button (Vista/7).
2. Go to Programs (or All Programs in Vista).
3. Go to Accessories.
4. Go into System Tools.
5. Click Disk Cleanup.
6. Select the C: drive and click OK.
7. Make sure Temporary Internet Files is selected, and click OK again to delete the selected locations.

Delete your computer's local temp files.

1. Make sure all windows and programs are closed.
2. Click the Windows button in the bottom left corner of the screen.
3. Type "temp" (without the quotes) in the Run box (XP) or Search box (Vista/7) and press Enter.
4. Delete the contents of the folder (simply skip anything that cannot be deleted).
5. Click the Windows Start button again.
6. Type %temp% (include the % signs) in the Run box (XP) or Search box (Vista/7) and press Enter.
7. Delete the contents of the folder (simply skip anything that cannot be deleted).

Note: If the folder contains subfolders marked Cookies or History, and you delete them, you may lose your login information for some websites and will clear the history of visited websites from your Address bar. You'll need to log back in to any website that requires a membership to access.

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