Is Your C Drive Writing Too Much Data? Here’s How to Find Out and Fix It


What could be causing excessive disk write activity on my C drive?

I have noticed that my C drive, which only contains the OS and a few applications, has accumulated 32000 GB of write operations in 18 months. This is much higher than my other 6 drives, which have less than 5000 GB each. Moreover, in the last 24 hours, the C drive has written 55 GB of data, even though I was only browsing the web. I suspect that there might be a malicious program or a system error behind this.

However, when I check the Task Manager, it shows a low disk transfer rate of 3.2 MB/s, which corresponds to about 5 GB of data written. This does not explain the remaining 50 GB. How can I find out what is writing so much data to my C drive and how can I stop it?


Disk write activity is the amount of data that is written to a disk by the operating system or applications. It is normal for a disk to have some write activity, especially when installing or updating software, downloading files, or creating backups. However, excessive disk write activity can indicate a problem with the system or a potential security threat.

One of the possible causes of excessive disk write activity is a malware infection. Malware is a term for any software that is designed to harm or exploit a computer system. Some types of malware, such as ransomware, cryptominers, or keyloggers, can write large amounts of data to the disk, either to encrypt or steal the user’s files, or to use the system’s resources for malicious purposes. Malware can also hide itself from the Task Manager or other system tools, making it difficult to detect and remove.

Another possible cause of excessive disk write activity is a system error. System errors are faults or bugs that occur in the operating system or applications, causing them to behave abnormally or crash. Some system errors can result in a disk write loop, where the system repeatedly writes the same data to the disk, or a disk fragmentation, where the system writes data to different parts of the disk, making it slower and less efficient. System errors can also cause the system to generate large log files or temporary files, which can fill up the disk space.

To find out what is writing so much data to the C drive and how to stop it, the user can follow these steps:

  • Scan the system for malware. The user can use a reputable antivirus or anti-malware software to scan the system for any potential threats. The user should also update the software regularly and enable real-time protection to prevent future infections. If the scan detects any malware, the user should follow the instructions to quarantine or delete it.
  • Check the disk usage by applications. The user can use the Resource Monitor or the Performance Monitor tools, which are built-in in Windows, to check the disk usage by applications. The user can access these tools by typing their names in the Start menu or the Run dialog box. The user can then sort the applications by the Write column to see which ones are writing the most data to the disk. The user can also check the Process Name column to see the file path of the applications. If the user finds any suspicious or unknown applications, the user should research them online or contact a professional for advice.
  • Fix any system errors. The user can use the System File Checker or the Check Disk tools, which are also built-in in Windows, to fix any system errors that might be causing excessive disk write activity. The user can access these tools by opening the Command Prompt as an administrator and typing the commands `sfc /scannow` or `chkdsk /f /r`, respectively. The user should then follow the instructions to scan and repair the system files or the disk sectors. The user may need to restart the system for the changes to take effect.
  • Clean up the disk space. The user can use the Disk Cleanup tool, which is another built-in tool in Windows, to clean up the disk space by deleting unnecessary or temporary files. The user can access this tool by typing its name in the Start menu or the Run dialog box. The user can then select the C drive and the files that the user wants to delete, such as the Recycle Bin, the Temporary Files, the System Error Memory Dump Files, etc. The user can also use the Clean up system files option to delete more files, such as the Previous Windows Installation Files, the Windows Update Cleanup, etc. The user should then confirm the deletion and wait for the process to finish.
  • By

following these steps, the user can hopefully reduce the excessive disk write activity on the C drive and improve the system’s performance and security. However, if the problem persists or worsens, the user should seek professional help or consider replacing the disk.

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