now if it was anyone else, I'd suggest that a virus might be filling up your hdd, but as you're generally smarter than the average user, let's pass on that one - for now.
Restore points can use a lot of space, but you can restrict the amount available. XP by default puts it at 12% which is waay too much, you never need to go back more than a few days, so knock that down to about 5% tops (but check what that equals in actual disk space as you need at least a couple of gig)
Do you use iTunes? or anything like it? the media libraries such applications create can eat up space rapidly, and is the primary reason I abandoned iTunes. Also, if you've been installing a lot of stuff, and opening up a lot of web folders and compressed files, you'll have big temp files, a full cache, and a very big prefetch folder. none of which you need. If your parents have been fiddling with your media player suites listening to interweb radio, they prob'ly are the reason why you're losing all this space. make sure it's not adding what they're streaming to the media library, as it almost certainly is. The create a limited access account with a password and tell them to keep away and stop trashing your pc
so, get rid of the media libraries in kak like iTunes or Media Player (you can still play the files from their storage directories just as well) and then, delete all the files and sub-directories in the following folders (be careful though!) do NOT delete the directories themselves! This will free up lots od space. Make sure you disable the add to media library function too, otherwise it'll all be recreated again. I've seen these things use up scores of gbs for no useful purpose.
C:Temp - probl'y just got some txt files in, and it may not even exist in your root. if it's not, don't worry, saves you the bother.
C:\Windows\Temp - you can get rid of everything in here. you won't lose anything important, it's just temp files.
C:\Documents and Settings\<username>\Local Settings\Temp - and here too, delete the lot.
C:\Windows\Prefetch - all EXCEPT layout.ini, you need that. All the rest is just Windows dross.
empty out your browser cache including IE even if you don't use the stupid thing
disable synchronisation and offline files, unless you really need them.
Archive and compact your Outlook personal folders, if you use Outlook.
Disable the Windows Indexing service, it's complete rubbish anyway
Use the disk cleanup tool and get rid of any.old and .chk files lying around, and use the compress old files option too.
manually archive stuff you aren't likely to use but don't want to get rid of using WinRar and burn it to disk or external storage, then delete it. this can inculde savegames (you should see how big the savegame files are for Oblivion, for example) Burn films and shows to DVD also, or tranfer to external storage.
run a reg and file/directory cleaner like Windoctor or C-Cleaner, to tidy up the loose ends.
defrag, pref using Diskeeper.
let me know how much space you free up! it will be more than you think.
Edited by - Tawakalna on 9/16/2006 5:02:46 PM