memory is now full-how to free up some space?

Hi everybody, I'm new to linux and new to this forum. I just started running ubuntu on a sony laptop (vaio) that is about 8 years old. After a few weeks use, the laptop stopped recognizing the hard drive. Was able to deduce that the memory is 100% full as I had done no maintenance and the temporary files and cookies must have just piled up. How do I get into that and delete the right things to free up some space? How can I do that in the future? The guy who gave me this machine and loaded it with ubuntu in the first place tells me that there is not a file cleaner to automatically do that like you would see with a windows pc. Help?

Use a LiveCD

Set the BIOS to start from the CDRom. Put in a LiveCD. The Ubuntu Desktop disk?

Access the Hard Drive. Look first at deleting stuff from the Home and creating the space there.

When you have created enough space change the BIOS back to starting from the Hard Drive, and try again.

Recommend installing ubuntu-tweek which will clean temporary files etc.

Do you mean that your hard

Do you mean that your hard drive is full, as opposed to your memory, which refreshes every time you boot? How large is your drive? Which version of Ubuntu are you running? Why didn't you just wipe the drive & install your own OP?
Quickstart will help you clean up the junk, but have you any idea what was installed by the guy who gave you this machine?
So many ?'s...

Thanks for the good advice,

Thanks for the good advice, Alan. Cheers!

Jonny5tails-thanks for the

Jonny5tails-thanks for the insight. I don't know much about computers. Heh, obviously. It must be that the memory is full. I will try Alan's suggestion and see what I get. Quickstart may be an option.