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Windows 8 is duplicating files


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Old 18-11-2013, 06:24
100andthirty
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I have discovered that my HDD usage is increasing and on examination of the file structure I have discovered that two very large folders have popped up: Windows\system32\config\systemprofile\ and C:\Windows\SysWOW64\config\systemprofile\. Both are about 66GB in size and include duplicates of many (but not all) files in My Documents, My Music, My Pictures etc.

I'm not sure why they're there, and can I delete them? I've searched extensively but can't find anything relevant on-line to explain why they're there.

If anyone can help, I'd be very grateful.
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Old 18-11-2013, 06:33
rjb101
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Well I found this by just looking for the sysWOW64 bit

WoW64 stands for "Windows on 64-bit Windows", and it contains all the 32-bit binary files required for compatibility, which run on top of the 64 bit Windows.WOW64 knows that the Setup wizard is a 32-bit application running within an emulator. It also knows that 64- and 32-bit code cannot be mixed. As such, the WOW64 emulator aliases an alias to the \Windows\SysWOW64 folder. This means that any time a 32-bit application needs to read or write anything to or from the \Windows\System32 folder, the WOW64 emulator transparently redirects the request to the \Windows\SysWOW64 folder.

Not sure it helps though
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Old 18-11-2013, 07:47
100andthirty
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RJB101. Thanks very much for the input. It's very interesting to learn a bit more about how Windows works, but as you say, it doesn't help me solve my problem. However, thanks again for your interest.
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Old 18-11-2013, 09:30
John259
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It might be worth trying the forums at Windows Secrets (they call their forum the "Lounge"):
http://windowssecrets.com
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Old 18-11-2013, 09:52
Stig
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I have discovered that my HDD usage is increasing and on examination of the file structure I have discovered that two very large folders have popped up: Windows\system32\config\systemprofile\ and C:\Windows\SysWOW64\config\systemprofile\. Both are about 66GB in size and include duplicates of many (but not all) files in My Documents, My Music, My Pictures etc.

I'm not sure why they're there, and can I delete them? I've searched extensively but can't find anything relevant on-line to explain why they're there.

If anyone can help, I'd be very grateful.
Although I can't say for sure, I would guess that Windows isn't duplicating your files, but you are just seeing virtual links to the same files in different places.

Whilst Windows 8 isn't perfect, Microsoft are not stupid enough to duplicate your files for no reason. I would leave it alone unless you really know what you are doing.
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Old 18-11-2013, 10:10
IvanIV
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Those are probably just links not real files. But you can turn on history of your documents and then it keeps older versions of the same file. By default it's off, so I don't think it's that.
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Old 18-11-2013, 10:20
Maxatoria
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They will probably be hardlinks to the original files so i wouldn't mess with them as windows and symbolic links has never really worked for 3rd party programs (and even some of MS's stuff as well) as they quite often cant tell if its a link or the real file
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Old 18-11-2013, 11:12
zx50
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I have discovered that my HDD usage is increasing and on examination of the file structure I have discovered that two very large folders have popped up: Windows\system32\config\systemprofile\ and C:\Windows\SysWOW64\config\systemprofile\. Both are about 66GB in size and include duplicates of many (but not all) files in My Documents, My Music, My Pictures etc.

I'm not sure why they're there, and can I delete them? I've searched extensively but can't find anything relevant on-line to explain why they're there.

If anyone can help, I'd be very grateful.
The best thing to do would have been to check the remaining amount on the HDD in the 'My Computer' window.
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Old 18-11-2013, 21:16
100andthirty
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Thanks for all the responses. The feedback that these files are really just links does ring true as the total space added up of all these directories exceeds the capacity of the disc!
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