Why Do I Have 80 GB of Mysterious Crap on My Computer?

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A little while back I noticed that I had run out of room on my backup drive. That seemed kind of weird, since I don’t have a huge amount of stuff on my primary (Windows 7) drive. So I looked around to see what was up.

Long story short, I have about 150 GB of stuff on my primary drive. Several different methods confirm this. However, it turns out there’s another 80 GB of mysterious dark matter there, which (apparently) gets compressed into 75 GB of backup dark matter on my backup drive. I’m flummoxed. What is this stuff? As near as I can tell, I’ve accounted for everything: hidden files, system files, swap files, hibernation files, etc. etc. But there’s still 80 GB more. What can it possibly be?

UPDATE: Mystery solved! It was 80 GB of restore points accumulated since the day I bought the PC, because that was the default setting my machine came with. I cut the maximum down to 15 GB and that restored 65 GB of free space. Thanks, everyone!

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And the truth is, going into the final 4 days of the year we still needed to raise $TK to hit our $350,000 goal and start 2021 on track. It's nerve-wracking, wondering if the big spike we normally see at the end of December is going to be another thing that doesn't go as planned in 2020, or worse, if, now that Donald Trump is set to leave the White House (for longer than a taxpayer-funded golf trip to a property he owns), folks might be pulling back from fighting for the truth and a democracy and think the hard work is done.

It's not, and if you can right now, please consider a year-end donation to support our team's fearless nonprofit journalism so we can close that big fundraising gap and finish the year strong, ready for all that's ahead in 2021. Whether you can give $5 or $500, it all matters in keeping us charging hard, and we'd be grateful.

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