Freeing up disk space by cleaning up a WSUS server

Posted: 27th April 2011 by scythe944 in Computer Stuff

I have a few customers that run Windows Small Business Servers, and with using the default configuration, the server’s hard drive space can be completely filled in a matter of months by old updates.  This is because of the WSUS (Windows Server Update Services) service that runs by default in SBS machines in order to keep all computers up to date and to prevent all of your computers from downloading the same updates over and over again.

However, if left unchecked, it could prevent your users from saving files, especially if you have folder redirection enabled.

It’s simple to reclaim the wasted disk space that has been used by the overzealous downloading of the WSUS server as long as you know what to do.

So for those who don’t know how to cleanup their WSUS server, I will provide some simple instructions on how to do so:

First, you must login to the server, either remotely or at the console.  We’ll do this remotely in this example.

Click Start > Run… (or hit the Windows Key + R) and type “mstsc” (without the quotes) and hit ok








Then, in the “Remote Desktop Connection” window, type the name of your server:







Then click Connect

Login with administrative credentials.

Once logged in, find the WSUS Console by clicking on Start > Administrative Tools > Windows Server Update Services

The console will open, and look similar to this:









Simply click on the Options button on the bottom left-hand corner, then click on Server Cleanup Wizard

You should get a screen that looks like this:











Just allow all boxes to be checked and click, Next.

The server will now attempt to remove all unused, declined, superseded, or otherwise unusable updates from your server.  Depending on how long it has been since the last cleaning, and how many different types of Microsoft programs are installed on your computers, this step may take a considerable amount of time.

You can safely close the remote desktop connection and continue working or let it run overnight.  You can remotely access the server again later to check on it’s progress.  Once done, you can review the cleanup wizard to see how much disk space you have saved.











Hopefully yours shows even more savings than this!