Make more space by deleting log files

Fred langa By Fred Langa

Log files can be useful, but they mainly just take up space.

Trim away your useless log files to gain space and make your backups and restores smaller and faster!

Hidden log files eat your disk space

Log files can be useful: They’re usually plain-text records of actions taken by software as it runs — changes made, files added or deleted, and so on. When something goes wrong, it may be possible to examine the appropriate log file to see what the software was trying to do when it encountered trouble. That, in turn, can be a valuable troubleshooting clue.

But over the years, log files have moved from front-line troubleshooting to a rarely used and obscure tool tucked away on your PC. Log files can be like weeds, growing in the quiet corners of your hard drive.

Try this experiment in order to see just how many log files are taking up space on your hard drive:

Click Start, Search, then search All files and folders on your hard drive for any files named *.log. Odds are, you’ll find hundreds of log files you probably never knew existed. (The Windows folder tree alone is a rich repository of log files.) My system currently has almost 900 of the suckers!

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All Windows Secrets articles posted on 2007-02-22:

Fred Langa

About Fred Langa

Fred Langa is senior editor. His LangaList Newsletter merged with Windows Secrets on Nov. 16, 2006. Prior to that, Fred was editor of Byte Magazine (1987 to 1991) and editorial director of CMP Media (1991 to 1996), overseeing Windows Magazine and others.