Cleaning up Windows 10 Update Easily(3 Ways)

This article will show you 3 easy ways to clean up Windows 10 update files and how to the backup system before cleaning up Windows 10 update to avoid data loss. Read the article and learn the methods.


by Clytze Updated on December 22, 2022

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User Case

“I have an Asus 2-in-1 laptop and I noticed that it is starting to slow down. Sometimes, I have to restart it when it gets stuck on the loading screen.

I have updated my computer to Windows 10 21H2 version and I want to make it run faster. So, I'd like to know how to clean up the Windows 10 update files. By the way, what should I do if it gets stuck again while cleaning up? Thanks!”

Prompt Information

If you need to clean up Windows 10 update files, you can use Storage Sense, Temporary files, or Disk Cleanup to help you. If it gets stuck during the cleaning up process, you can learn how to deal with it as well as how to backup your system before cleaning up in this article.

What Is Windows 10 Update Cleanup?

Windows 10 update cleanup is a concept of Windows cleanup tool removes unnecessary files for you including temporary files, offline files, old Windows files, Windows update logs, etc. It can help you regain valuable hard disk space by removing the pieces of old Windows updates that are no longer needed. The entire cleanup process will take a long time, possibly several hours.

Reasons for Cleaning up Windows 10 Update

Some people may ask why should I clean up Windows update? When you upgrade to a new version, such as Windows 10 21H2/22H2, Windows will keep the old system files for 10 days. After 10 days, Windows will delete these files to free up disk space. Certainly, you can also delete them by yourself using the cleanup tool. It will avoid the problem your computer running slowly due to lack of disk space.

Besides, if you don't clean up the system updates for a long time, it will take up a lot of C drive space and the system operation will be affected. Also, there is a possibility that you install a Windows update, such as KB5021233, causing a blue screen. Therefore, cleaning up system update files is very important.

Prepare for Cleaning up Windows 10 Update

Before cleaning up the Windows 10 update files, in order to avoid some unexpected situations that lead to data loss during the cleaning process, you can make a backup for your system in advance. If something goes wrong with your computer accidentally, you can use this system backup to restore and then use it normally. 

Of course, but when you want to upgrade your computer to Windows 21H2 or 22H2 update, it is also recommended that you back up your computer first. Because we don't know if there will be system problems like Windows Update 0x80080005 error during the update process. With system backup, you can not worry about these problems.

You can use free and reliable backup software, such as AOMEI Backupper Standard. And it has the following advantages:

  • It supports system backup, disk backup, partition backup and file backup. So, you can backup any items you want.
  • It supports scheduled backup at a fixed interval, including daily, weekly, monthly.
  • In addition to a full backup, it also supports incremental backup and differential backup which can only backup changed files.
  • It supports multiple operating systems (Windows 7, 8, 8.1, 10, 11, XP, Vista, etc).  

You can follow the graphic tutorial below to backup your system easily. 

Step 1. Download AOMEI Backupper Standard and install and open it. Then click Backup > System Backup.

Download Freeware Win 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

System Backup

Step 2. Select a destination to save your system backup.

Select Destination

Step 3. Confirm your operations and click Start Backup.

Start Backup


  • Options: You can enable email notification, choose the compression level, and splitting ways for your system backup.
  • Schedule: This feature can wake the computer to run scheduled tasks as you set.
  • Scheme: You can set rules for deleting old backups so that you can get more available disk space. You can enjoy this feature by upgrading to the professional version

How to Cleaning up Windows 10 Update

After backing up your system, you can start cleaning up Windows 10 update files. And here are three different methods for you. All features come with the Windows system, so it is very convenient. You can follow the detailed graphic tutorials in the article and choose any of them to help you.

Method 1. Cleaning up Windows 10 Update using Storage Sense

The first method is to use Storage Sense to clean up Windows 10 update files, and you can follow the steps below:

Step 1. Go to Settings > System > Storage. Then click on Configure Storage Sense or run it now option.

Configure Storage Sense Or Run Now

Step 2. Click Delete the previous version of Windows option under Free up space now.

Delete Previous Version

Step 3. Finally, click the Clean now button.

Method 2. Cleaning up Windows 10 Update using Temporary Files

In addition to the first method, we can also try the second method, which is cleaning up Windows 10 update files using Temporary files. Here are the specific graphic steps:

Step 1. Go to Settings > System > Storage. Then click the Temporary files option under Windows 10 (C:).

Stroage Sense Temporary Files

Step 2. Tick the Previous Windows installation(s) option.

Temporary Files Previous Windows Installation

Step 3. Click the Remove files button.

Method 3. Cleaning up Windows 10 Update using Disk Cleanup

The last method is to use Disk Cleanup, which can also help you clean up Windows 10 update files. You can follow the graphic tutorial step by step:

Step 1. Open the Start menu, type Control Panel, and press Enter.

Step 2. Go to Administrative Tools > Disk Cleanup. Then choose the top result and select Clean up system files.

Cleanup System Files

Step 3. Tick the Previous Windows installation(s) option and finally click OK.

Previous Windows Installation

How to Stop Cleaning up in Windows 10

Some users will be concerned about Windows 10 update cleaning up stuck, or if it prompts the following message “Cleaning up. Do not turn off your computer”. Don’t worry, you can try the following method.

Step 1. Restart your computer and press F8 when the computer is booting to display the Advanced Boot Options.

Step 2. Select Safe Mode and press Enter.

Safe Mode

Step 3. Run Windows Update again. After the update is installed successfully, you can repeat the previous two steps and choose to start Windows normally.


I believe that by reading this article, you have mastered how to clean up Windows 10 update files. You can easily solve the problem with any of the methods mentioned in the article.

Remember to backup the system for preventing data loss. And the free and secure system backup software - AOMEI Backupper Standard is a great option. It not only has a variety of backup features mentioned above but also can help you restore the system backup simply. By the way, if you want to explore more amazing features, then go to download and use it!

Clytze · Editor
Clytze, an editor at AOMEI Technology, is passionate about safeguarding your digital world. She dedicates her expertise to empower users like you in data security and recovery. She firmly believes that everyone should have the tools and knowledge to protect their digital assets through computer backup, seamless disk cloning, and efficient file synchronization. Clytze is your trusted guide on the journey to data safety.