View Full Version : Duplicate Files - why so many

I have duplicate files in C:\Windows\system32\Driver Store\Repository and C:\Windows\winsxs\. Do you need them all ...

Here is more information on Winsxs

Just leave your driver repository alone. Even though there are many files they are tiny in size. Not worth possibly wrecking your system to reclaim a few MB you don't really need.

Agreed...those files are not causing any harm as long as your system is operating as it should...and duplicate files are often installed by applications expecting to find those files in the specific location where they installed said files. I suspecf that the program may malfunction if that location happens to be devoid of the desired file.


Just to add some extra information here. A lot of the duplicate files are not actually duplicates, they are often one file (on the HDD) but are showing in more than one location, these are known as 'Hardlinks'.

If know what the path of a driver inside C:\Windows\system32\Driver Store\Repository and you open up a CMD window and run the following command fsutil hardlink list filepath, you will see the hardlinks.

For example here is a file I picked at random: "C:\Windows\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\usb hub3.inf_amd64_e5b67801fbd84e76\USBHUB3.SYS"
Buy running the above command you can see that all three results are actually the same file, but just showing I more than one location.
\Windows\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\usbhu b3.inf_amd64_e5b67801fbd84e76\USBHUB3.SYS
\Windows\WinSxS\amd64_usbhub3.inf_31bf3856ad364e35 _6.3.9600.17292_none_e691f6e52106d89a\USBHUB3.SYS