Windows system usually install all downloaded programs on C drive by default, so most PC users often install all programs to C drive without changing the default location. Along with more and more program files installed on C drive and other data like cookies, temporary files, setup files, etc. stored to this partition, free space on C drive might become insufficient. You may receive low disk space warning on C drive when it does not have enough free space. Can you move all program files from C drive to D or another partition to free up disk space in order to fix low disk space problem on PC?
Note: If it's just files, folders not the software installation folder, you may move the files from c drive to d, e, f or any other drives safely by simply copy the files on c drive and paste them to D, E, F, H etc. and remove the files on the c drive after the files have been successfully transferred from c to other drives.
If program files have occupied too much free space on C drive, you may want to move them from C to D drive to free up disk space. Here are the scenarioes and solutions.
Case#1, program exe saved on c but installed on other drives, it's totally safe to move the exe to any where as you wish
Usually, if you only store the downloaded program files to C drive but all programs are installed on another partition, you can directly delete the downloaded files from C drive. You can still use all programs on your computer even after deleting the source files as long as you do not uninstall the programs from PC.
Case#2, programs installed on c drive
On the contrary, if the programs are installed on C drive, you cannot move it from C to D or any other partition directly because the programs might stop working normally after moving them from one drive to another. It needs extra work(2 ways which will be introudced in the following part) to get applications moved from c to D or any other drives.
How to move program files and program files(x86) from c drive to another drive d, e, h, f or other drives?
Note: You need to create the same folder directories as the installation program files on the c drive -> Simply copy and paste the installation folder that would contain the whole installation folder directories.
For example, if it's the installation for Google on c drive: Route: This pc -> OS(c:)>Program Files>Google, with folder name Chrome
Create the same folder directory on D drive if you want to move the installation files to drive D with the following steps.
Note: You need to copy every installation one by one to the drive D
If it's the installtion folder on Program Files(x86), you need to create the same folder name on drive D.
Copying and pasting folders done? Use the following cmd to get it work.
Video - how to move installed software/game to another drive in Windows 11/10
Preparations: Here we made drive D as the target address to move the program files.
Once the above operations have been operated, then you may change the setting in Regedit.
Step1, Press WIN+R on your keyboard to start the CMD, and the type Regedit
Step2, Find the following path in the registry editor and change C: of the numeric data to D:.
For Windows 11/10:
HKEY_ LOCAL_ MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion
For Windows 7/8/8.1:
HKEY_ LOCAL_ MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion
This method is not the best way, one tough way to get the work done.
How? Move all source (installation) files from C to D drive and then uninstall all programs from your computer. Finally, you can reinstall those programs on your computer location D drive.
Note: The previous data may get removed if there were no cloud backup in your account.
Are you doubt if there is any way to fix low disk space on C drive without moving any program files from this partition? The answer is positive! If PC reports low disk space on C drive, you can expand the space of C partition rather than moving or deleting any file.
Without relying on any partition software, you can extend C drive space on your computer with Windows built-in tool, namely Disk Management and Diskpart command line. They are two different kinds of tool, which are available in different Windows platform for C drive increasing without needing to repartition hard drive.
If you would like to use a partition magic tool for system partition resizing, you can use IM-Magic Partition Resizer Free to extend system partition to resolve low disk space problem. This free partition software works on Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, 10, 11 to extend system partition without moving any data from C drive.
Free Download Partition Resizer Freeware, the Disk Management Tool to Manage Disk Volumes without losing data that you may use it for resize, move, delete, copy, clone with freeware.
More video tutorials are on this page for using this freeware.
Note: This following link includes a commercial tool.
You can free download IM-Magic Partition Resizer Server (free trial, needs a pay for function) for expanding system partition on Windows Server including Server 2003, 2008, 2012, SBS 2003, 2008, 2012, 2016, 2019, 2022 and Windows Server 2003 R2, 2008 R2, 2012 R2 etc.
Disk Management is available as a completely free tool in Windows Vista, 7, 8, 10, 11, Server 2008/2008 R2 / 2012/2012 R2, 2016, 2019 etc. Therefore, you can run Disk Management to expand C drive space if your computer runs under any of those Windows platform.
Here are the steps:
Step1: Delete the drive next to the c drive under disk management to create free space, or you may shrink the volume that is next to the c drive in disk management to create some free space
Step2: Right click c drive, and expand it
Also read: how to extend c drive in disk managment
Diskpart command line is available in all Windows platform for partition resizing, but it is not easy to handle. What is more, Diskpart is unable to extend system partition or FAT32 partition.
The question: Can you transfer software on a usb flash drive?
Answer: It's safe to move software installation files from c drive to a usb flash drive or external hdd/ssd if the software is a portable edition, which can be used from a usb stick or removable disk, or you need to keep it on your disk since the software needs computer registery on the disk if it's non portable edition.
Also read: how to free up disk space on Windows 11/10