Office Click to Run tidy up - get back wasted disk space

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Microsoft’s Click to Run install may accumulate a lot of temporary files that stick around on your hard drive.  They can amount to many gigabytes of wasted disk space.

Amazingly, there doesn’t seem to be any official tidy up option available to reclaim all that disk space.   We found 19GB of unnecessary files on a test machine.

Here’s how you can free up disk space used by the Office ‘Click to Run’ install.  They are deliberately cautious steps.

This is NOT supported by Microsoft so use at your own risk.  At worst, you’d have to reinstall Office.

Find the folder

C:\\ProgramData\Microsoft\ClickToRun

You’ll have to make hidden folders visible in Explorer. View | Hidden Items.

In the folder, check to see how much space it is using.  Select all items (Ctrl + A) then right-click and choose Properties.   Look at the Size, if it’s large (ie many GB) then it could be trimmed.

But that’s isn’t always the case.  Another computer had a mere 25MB in the same folder, so there’s nothing to do.

Why the difference?  The folder dates suggest that the unnecessary folders are leftover from the Office 2016 Preview.

There will be many sub-folders with long unique names.  Click on the ‘Date Modified’ heading so the list is sorted with the newest files first.

You can delete or move the older folders.  But how old?  It’s an educated, cautious guess.  Here’s how we decided.

In the above list, there’s a ‘UserData’ folder dated 23 Sept 2015.  We’ve chosen to remove all the folders before that date.

Select those older folders.  You could delete them or, if you’re cautious like us, move to a temporary folder.

Either way, you’ll get a prompt to confirm this action.

After the delete/move, check the size of the ‘ClicktoRun’ folder to see how much space you’ve saved.  In our test case, it shrunk from 19GB to a mere 50MB!

Since this isn’t a supported action, you might want to check that Office Click to Run is working OK.  Open any Office program, choose File | Account | Update Options | Update Now.

Office should show a ‘Checking for Updates’ screen then either download new updates or say that you’re up to date.

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