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Cleaning the update cache in Windows

August 2015

In PCs with the Windows operating system, whenever there is an update to the computer, the installation cache (temporary data) gets saved in a folder by default. This update cache can eat up the space on the hard disk. Thus, it is important to periodically erase the content of this folder. This can be done by creating a batch file.

Every time your computer is being updated, Windows automatically saves the installation cache in a folder:

Using a batch file

  • C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution\Download
  • To erase the contents of this folder (to free up space on your hard drive):
    • You will have to create a batch file to do this faster:
    • Open Notepad
  • Copy and paste these commands in your notepad:

CD %Windir%          
CD SoftwareDistribution          
DEL /F /S /Q Download
  • Save as 'Erase_cache'.
    • Do not forget to select all files with the '.bat' extension
  • Save and close.
  • To use this batch file, simply double click on it each time you wish to clear the update cache.

Procedure for Windows XP

  • Click on Start > Run > cmd
  • In the command prompt, type the following commands:

net stop wuauserv       

cd /d %windir%       

rd /s SoftwareDistribution
  • Restart your PC to purge the update cache
  • Open a command prompt and type "net start wuauserv" to enable the Windows update service back.

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Published by jak58. - Latest update by Jeff
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