Questions about moving Windows temp files/folders to a separate physical drive
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Thread: Questions about moving Windows temp files/folders to a separate physical drive

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
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    Question Questions about moving Windows temp files/folders to a separate physical drive

    I was having many issues with out-of-memory errors and slow performance, a lot of it due to having to temporarily move my OS drive from the SSD array it was on to a 5400RPM drive for now and having to keep the swap file small.

    SSDs have gone down in price, so I got a cheap small 128GB SSD that I am using just for temporary files for now, it has helped significantly. I figured that it would be useful even once I am back on a SSD to use this SSD for all my temporary data, but I wanted to know just how far I can go with that.

    I know that for applications that themselves use a temporary folder, I will need to set that on a per-app basis, that's fine, I was talking purely about os-level temporary files/folders.

    I already put the swap file there, that's easy to do. I have hibernation disabled for now since being a desktop I don't really need it, but I do know how to put it on the SSD if I need to. And I read this guide on moving the two standard temp folders:

    https://www.howtogeek.com/285710/how...another-drive/

    I still have four additional questions however:

    1. Is there any actual user-saved data stored in these temp folders? I know that most of the user data is stored in the AppData folders, but I also know that apparently browsers make heavy use of these temp folders. Do they only put cached data and other such-non important information in there? Or would they also store bookmarks, or login cookies, etc in there? Information that would actually impact me if I were to lose it?

    2. Are any of these necessary for Windows to start up properly or not lose anything between restarts? The issue is that I might also have to experiment with different operating system installs by swapping said drive, and I would like to re-use that SSD for temp data for all of them simply by wiping it since leaving temp data from another windows install/version could cause issues. I know that the swap file is not important between reboots, the hibernation file is but I have that disabled anyway, but I have no idea about the temp folders. Can those be deleted between reboots without issue? Also, would I still need to have the folders on the drive, but just empty, or will Windows simply re-create the temp folder that it has been set to if it does not exist?

    3. Would I need to move the contents of the existing temp files to the other drive when I change the temp folder environment path?

    4. And finally, are there any other OS-level temporary files/folders one can advise I can set to that spare drive?
    Last edited by Cyber Akuma; September 30th, 2018 at 05:21 PM.
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 1998
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    Toronto
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    23,670
    I use CCLeaner multiple times/day on multiple computers to delete everything it can in all of my temp folders. I have never run into any situation where it deleted anything that caused a problem and I've used it for many years. There are a few files stored there that are used by my Avast a/v program and they can't be deleted by CCleaner because it doesn't have permission by default but they are very small and get updated regularly because they are always active. Even if you tried to manually delete those active files you couldn't anyway.

    Browser cache, cookies, bookmarks are not stored in temp folders but in specific folders created by the browsers themselves. They can optionally be deleted manually or using CCleaner but unless you have browser cache set to extraordinarily large size they don't usually take up much space. Cookies and bookmarks take up little space in their own non-temp folders. I have my browsers all set up to delete cache when I close them.

    There is a setting in CCLeaner to only delete items older than one day to be extra careful but I've never used that.

    I use my SSD for my operating system installation and all of it's default files and folders and that is the fastest way to utilize all it's speed benefits. I store media on a separate hard drive so the max size of my whole running Windows 7 installation is never more than around 40Gigs including swap file (with 4 gigs of RAM).
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