Keep it optimized

How to delete older versions of File History on Windows 10

If File History is using a lot of space, you can use the cleanup versions option to delete older files to better organize the backup and reclaim storage space.

File History delete older versions on WIndows 10

On Windows 10, File History is a feature that allows you to create periodic incremental backups of your files on an external drive or network folder. The only problem is that every time files change, new copies are created, and over time the storage can grow large causing to run out of space on the drive saving the backups.

If you ever start running out of space, File History includes a clean up tool to delete old versions of files and folders keeping only the most recent versions. 

In this guide, you’ll learn the steps to delete older files and folders using the File History Cleanup versions option on Windows 10.

How to delete older versions of files on File History

To delete old versions of files and folders in File History, use these steps:

  1. Open Settings on Windows 10.

  2. Click on Update & Security.

  3. Click on Backup.

  4. Click on More options.

    Backup settings More options
    Backup settings More options
  5. Under the “Related settings” section, click the See advanced settings option.

    Backup settings See advanced options
    Backup settings See advanced options
  6. Click the “Advanced settings” option from the left pane.

    File History Advanced settings option
    File History Advanced settings option
  7. Under the “Versions” section, click the Clean up versions options.

    File History clean up versions option
    File History clean up versions option
  8. Use the drop-down menu to decide files that you want to delete from the backup. Options available, include:

    • All but the latest one.
    • Older than 3 months.
    • Older than 6 months.
    • Older than 9 months.
    • Older than 1 year.
    • Older than 2 years.

    File History delete old versions option
    File History delete old versions option
  9. Click the Clean up button.

Once you complete the steps, File History will delete older copies of files and folders depending on the option that you specified.

If File History contains some files that you don’t wish to keep, but you don’t want to use the clean up tool as it may remove other files, then you can manually delete individual files from the backup using these steps.