Question How often should you format your system?

Exia00

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Dec 27, 2013
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Hi just was curious but how often should i format my system because back then when i used a hard drive i would do it every year but now since i am using just SSD's i tend to wonder how often i should format it and the reason for me asking is because my main drive right now for my OS had about 20% storage left which is only a 240gb SSD but the only thing i have ever installed on it was just mainly game launchers and some free editing software (which all projects gets saved onto my secondary hard drive).
Also like to note it has been about 2 years since i have been using this drive as well.
 

BogdanH

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Sep 21, 2020
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Main reason why we used to format HDD was, because over the time HDD got heavy fragmented (Windows felt kinda sluggish) and because by installing/uninstalling software a lot of "garbage" collected eating precious space on HDD.
With SSD, fragmentation is not an issue anymore. So the only reason to format (and fresh OS install) is, if you wish to "cleanup" your OS or you change some important hardware.
You say you don't really have much installed, still only 20% space is left on 240GB SSD? That kinda indicates, there's a lot of stuff that hasn't been removed when uninstalling, or there are files on SSD you don't really use/need anymore (temporary files, duplicated files, etc.) -in short: garbage. Windows itself uses about max 18GB.. so, what eats additional 180GB(!)?
There's no rule how often you should format -you format when you need to.
 
Reactions: Exia00
how often should i format my system?
Never
because back then when i used a hard drive i would do it every year
Who told you to do that?
my main drive right now for my OS had about 20% storage left which is only a 240gb SSD but the only thing i have ever installed on it was just mainly game launchers and some free editing software
Clean up user data on SSD. Move unnecessary files to HDD.
 
Main reason why we used to format HDD was, because over the time HDD got heavy fragmented (Windows felt kinda sluggish) and because by installing/uninstalling software a lot of "garbage" collected eating precious space on HDD.
You use defragmenting software for that. No need to do format there.

BTW - windows does HDD defragmenting automatically. You don't even need to think about that.
 

USAFRet

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Mar 16, 2013
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How often?
When there is a major software issue, or during a major hardware change.

The last OS install on my main system was in Nov-Dec 2016, when I built it. It is also the only format and install on this system.
 
Reactions: Exia00

Colif

Win 10 Master
Moderator
Windows 10 reinstalls itself every 6 months when you get version updates. So any more than that seems excessive to me. I only reinstall windows if I have a problem I can't figure out and its like the last step. If problem still exists after that its always hardware. My only 2 reinstalls of win 10 in 5 years on last PC were both not windows fault.

I got 20H2 earlier tonight, 2nd new version of win 10 on this PC in 2 months, the iso seems to have grown about 115mb since 2004 was released.
 

mitch074

Distinguished
It used to be true with XP and older. Ever since Vista using image-based installs, a reformat is only needed in case of massive hardware changes (if that), selling a PC (zero-ing all previous data) or bad data corruption (virus, system instability, bit rot)
 

Exia00

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Dec 27, 2013
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Well i found out the cause of what was taking up space which was located in C:\ProgramData\AVG\Antivirus\log which there are 5 etl files that is 45.2gb in total but i have no idea if it is safe to just straight up delete it which i contacted Microsoft about it after i contacted AVG about it which they told me to contact Microsoft and now i am talking to a guy named Rajat which he keeps trying to redirect me to the windows defender page and telling me to just reinstall windows instead of letting me know if it is safe to delete those files from my system because i don't know if it would affect anything on there.
 

USAFRet

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Mar 16, 2013
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Well i found out the cause of what was taking up space which was located in C:\ProgramData\AVG\Antivirus\log which there are 5 etl files that is 45.2gb in total but i have no idea if it is safe to just straight up delete it which i contacted Microsoft about it after i contacted AVG about it which they told me to contact Microsoft and now i am talking to a guy named Rajat which he keeps trying to redirect me to the windows defender page and telling me to just reinstall windows instead of letting me know if it is safe to delete those files from my system because i don't know if it would affect anything on there.
I see no reason to keep those log files.

AVG directing you to MS, because their application is creating 40+GB of log files?
That's one of the many reasons to dump AVG.
 

Exia00

Honorable
Dec 27, 2013
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I see no reason to keep those log files.

AVG directing you to MS, because their application is creating 40+GB of log files?
That's one of the many reasons to dump AVG.
But is it safe to delete the files because this would help me to avoid formatting my system instead.
 

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