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  1. #1
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    Can I remove lots of Windows components (Xbox, Sports, Weather, Money, etc.)?

    I bought a low-end Dell laptop (Inspiron 14) mainly for Skyping, although I expected to surf the web, create the occasional document, and do simple things like that. Stupidly, I was so excited at the low price, $279, that I didn't even pay attention to the size of the hard drive, assuming it would be smallish but at least be enough to do the job. After a couple of days, Windows wanted to do an update, and (choke!) reported there was no HD space. It needed 3-4 GB, and sure enough there was less than 1 GB available. All I had installed was Skype and Chrome. Then I checked Dell's stats on the machine: the entire HD comes with only 32GB! (32 GB eMMC, whatever that means) Really! So now I'm trying to clear up some space. There are lots of things already installed that I have no use for—Xbox, Sports, Weather, Money, Solitaire, News, Phone Companion, Store). I'm not sure removing them will give me enough space even then, but I don't need them. Can they be safely removed?

    Also, Windows says I can use an external device with at least 10 GB to do the update. Does that mean I'd have to have the device connected every time I use the laptop?

    I'm willing to use portable programs from a USB stick for some of my applications, but not being able to update Windows seems kind of a bad situation. I can't seem to contact Dell through its support chat lines, maybe because it's the weekend, so I'm asking here. I'll let Dell know what I think of their hard drive as soon as I can get through.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator Rick Corbett's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DavidToronto
    There are lots of things already installed that I have no use for—Xbox, Sports, Weather, Money, Solitaire, News, Phone Companion, Store). I'm not sure removing them will give me enough space even then, but I don't need them. Can they be safely removed?
    Yes, you can safely remove them. Have a look at this thread by RetiredGeek for an automated way of doing this or use the latest portable version of CCleaner or have a look at this article for info about how to do this manually.

    On the Windows desktop, right-click on the Recycle Bin and choose Properties. By default Windows reserves 10% of the drive for deleted files, i.e. on your device that's 3 GB potentially wasted. Either choose the Don't move files to the Recycle Bin option or, probably better just in case, wind back the amount of reserved space to something more reasonable like 300 MB.

    In addition, get rid of the built-in RetailDemo stuff.
    1. Right-click on the Start button, select Run and enter the following:
    Code:
    ms-settings:optionalfeatures
    2. When the Manage Optional Features dialog appears, remove the 2 Retail Demo Content items.
    3. Use Disk Clean-up (using Run as Administrator) to get rid of as much debris as possible (especially the RetailDemo Offline Content files to save another ~100 MB).

    It won't help storage space but I also delete the RetailDemo service ('cos I'm not ever going to be turning my devices into Point Of Sale devices advertising Windows 10 for Microsoft).

    1. Right-click on the Start button and select Command Prompt (Admin).
    2. Type sc stop retaildemo and press Return.
    3. Type sc delete retaildemo and press Return.
    4. Close the Command Prompt window.

    Hope this helps...
    Last edited by Rick Corbett; 2016-01-30 at 11:39. Reason: Added more info

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by DavidToronto View Post
    Also, Windows says I can use an external device with at least 10 GB to do the update. Does that mean I'd have to have the device connected every time I use the laptop?
    No, I think external storage would only be used for the Windows.old folder when the update is complete.

    After the November update to version 1511, you can also move apps to removable storage: Windows 10 Tip: Store Content on Removable Storage

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    Yes, thank you. That was exactly what I was looking for. I did gain about 1GB of HD space.

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    You're right, according to Dell Support, which I contacted on Monday morning. The external drive would hold backup files, in case I wanted to undo the update. I think he was quoting from some Microsoft webpage (I should have asked him which one). At first he said I could do it with a 16GB USB stick, although he later waffled and said 32GB is even better. I don't want to pay much for a simple housekeeping chore, but luckily I have an old external drive gathering dust, a little bulky by today's standards, and the kind that has a power supply, but I'm hoping it should do the job.

    Hopefully my experience will help anyone else with the same problem and serve as a warning to others thinking of buying a low-end Dell laptop. Look at those hard drive specs!

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