What Is the $Windows.~WS Folder, and Is It Safe to Delete?

A wiki article on what is $Windows.~WS folder and whether can you delete it.

Do you know that there are various temporary system folders present on your device? While they are not visible to you, some hold importance while others don’t. To manage your device’s space, it is best to keep a check on such system folders. In this article, we will be reviewing the $Windows.~WS folder and figuring out whether it is best to delete it from a Windows computer.

What is the $Windows.~WS Folder?

There are many temporary system folders present on a Windows device, which sometimes needs attention. You might have heard of the famous $Windows.~BT folder present in the C:/ drive of your Windows computer. Similar to this, another folder resides in the respective drive of your Windows computer, taking up space as a temporary system file.

Known as the $Windows.~WS folder, this folder comes up after a significant update in the Windows version. Usually, users who shift from Windows 7 or 8 to 10 have countered this temporary system folder on their devices. As many question the credibility of having this folder on their Windows computer, this folder is responsible for storing the essential files of the system that were present in the previous version of the Windows computer.

$Windows.~WS folder is reportedly hidden in the respective directory wherever it is discovered. While it contains some important Windows system files, it also comprises the profiles, file directory, and other important files. However, it is just some temporary data that does not have significance in the operation of a Windows computer. Thus, you might find it to be a folder that is taking up GBs of space on your computer.

Where is the $Windows.~WS Folder Located?

Are you confused about the location of the $Windows.~WS folder? If it is the case, you need to first navigate into the C:/ drive. Though this drive contains the respective folder, you will have to access it specially. For that, follow the steps below to figure out the location of the temporary system folder:

Step 1: Locate the Drive and Access View Section

As you have to enable a few options on your Windows computer, open the “C:/ drive” on your device by accessing File Explorer. Once you reach out to the drive, select the “View” tab on the top.

Step 2: Locate the Respective Options to Open the Folder Settings

Follow through the “Options” button within the menu bar that appears against the tab. Select “Check folder and search options” from the drop-down menu.

Step 3: Check the Appropriate Options for Displaying Hidden Files

A new window opens where you have to progress into the “View” tab from the top. Check the option of “Show hidden files, folders, and drives” from the list and disable the “Hide protected operating system files [recommended]” option. Tap “Apply” and locate the $Windows.~WS folder on the drive.

enable view hidden items

Can I Delete the $Windows.~WS Folder?

The question that arises about managing the $Windows.~WS folder is whether it is best to delete the folder from the computer. It surely is, as it only represents a temporary folder in the Windows system. The $Windows.~WS folder only contains temporary system files that are not installed during the new Windows update. Thus, deleting it won’t do any damage to the Windows computer or the operating system.

The main purpose of having the $Windows.~WS folder is to help the user restore some essential data if they consider restoring their device after an update. If someone does not wish to downgrade their device, it is best to delete the folder.

How to Delete $Windows.~WS Folder?

One of the initial methods of deleting the $Windows.~WS folder from the computer is by manually deleting the folder. You have to access the respective drive location on your computer and delete the file with ease. However, you might not be satisfied with such an approach of deleting this temporary system folder. For that, we have devised some appropriate methods that can be used to delete the folder:

Method 1: Using a Batch File

The first method that can be considered for countering this folder is by using a batch file. The BAT file can be created through the Notepad of your computer. To process this method, follow the guidelines provided below:

Step 1: Open Notepad and Add Content

Launch the Notepad on your computer and add the following content provided next:

@echo off

@echo "This will delete the folder C:$Windows.~WS and C:$Windows.~BT after an update to reclaim space. Windows 10 only."

@echo --------------------------------

@echo If you get message "The system cannot find the file specified," it means the folder is already deleted.

@echo --------------------------------


RD /S /Q "C:$Windows.~WS"

@echo --------------------------------

@echo All done

@echo --------------------------------

paste the commands

Step 2: Save the BAT File on Your Computer

Use the “CTRL + S” shortcut to open a window for saving the BAT file. You need to change the “Save as type:” option to “All Files” and write “.bat” next to the name of the document to save it as a BAT file.

save the file as bat

Step 3: Launch File to Automatically Delete $Windows.~WS Folder

After saving, if you double-click to open the file, it will automatically delete the $Windows.~WS content from your computer.

Method 2: Using Command Prompt as Administrator

Another quick approach to deleting the $Windows.~WS folder from your device is by accessing the Command Prompt. By running it as an administrator, you can permanently delete the file. For that, look through the steps provided next for a better understanding:

Step 1: Select the “Search” bar on the taskbar and continue to type “Command Prompt” in the provided space. Find the option of “Run as administrator” in the adjacent menus and open CMD successfully.

Step 2: You have to enter the following commands in the window one after another. Follow the order for deleting the $Windows.~WS content from your computer:

takeown /F C:\$Windows.~WS\* /R /A

icacls C:\$Windows.~WS\*.* /T /grant administrators:F

rmdir /S /Q C:\$Windows.~WS\
execute takeown commands


With all provided details, you have reviewed what the $Windows.~WS folder represents on a device. After going through the information, it will surely help you in getting to a solution. Use the provided methods above to delete the respective folder permanently from your device and save some space.

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Ahtasham Ahmad

Ahtasham is the Co-Founder of Visionary Merger. He is obsessed with the world of tech writing about software reviews, app testing, and detailed guides.

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