Why does the Windows 2000 Disk Cleanup utility freeze when I start it?

A. The Disk Cleanup utility frees up space on a volume. To access the utility, open My Computer, right-click the drive you want to work on, click Properties, then select Disk Cleanup from the General tab. If the program hangs the system, the problem is most likely caused by the Disk Cleanup Wizard checking for all files older than 50 days that it can compress. Disabling this behavior might improve the performance. To disable the behavior, perform the following steps:

  1. Start a registry editor (e.g., regedit.exe).
  2. Navigate to the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\VolumeCaches\Compress old files registry subkey, then select it.
  3. From the File menu, select Export.
  4. Enter a filename and location, then click Save.
  5. Delete the "Compress old files" registry subkey.
  6. Close the registry editor.

Alternatively, you can paste the following text in a file named nodiskchkcompress.reg and double-click the filename to run it:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

\[-HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\VolumeCaches\Compress old files\]

To enable the compressible-file check, you can run the .REG file you created in Step 4. If you didn't save the file in Step 4, you can paste the following text into a file to recreate the original .reg file:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

\[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\VolumeCaches\Compress old files\]
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