“Your Startup disk is almost full” or “Low disk space”
– How many of us have seen this message and wondered => How did that happen; I was fine last week?! This is what happened to my cousin and her laptop. She asked me to look at it to see what she could do to not receive this message again.
First the REAL problem: when your hard drive is full, your software will not work at maximum capacity due to there not being enough space to work with the Virtual Drive (located on your hard drive) your applications need to run. Second, as if slow running apps weren’t enough, you will start being told you cannot download, update, save, etc… any more.
So this is a realistic cause for alarm and I started looking at the file storage on the MAC laptop. The first thing I searched for was how much video was stored and what I found gave me the idea for this blog article. A different relative had helped her previously with the sharing of family photos, to the point of downloading Google Drive for her laptop. At first this is a fantastic way to share her grandchild’s photos with other member’s of the family. But what that other person did not think about was… every time they shared video or photos, not only were those assets going to the Google Drive, the next time my cousin opened her laptop they were being automatically synced on her computer and consuming very quickly her hard drive space! OUCH!!
So what are the two ways to THINK?
- Do you want quick access to documents from any device, anywhere? But the very next question must be how much disk space do I have to make this work with my laptop or desktop sync? (For those of us with Solid State Hard Drives… this could be costly)
- Do you want to free up space on your hard drive? You want to use DropBox, Google Drive, Box or OneDrive to free up space so that the performance on your laptop and desktop computers is optimal. Notice I am not including mobile devices in this conversation – the reason why? Mobile apps typically are set up to open the files that are stored online and you have to selectively choose to download a specific file to have it saved on your mobile device’s drive.
- If you are using Cloud File Storage for business, then you NEED to have access to all of your files from any device, at any time. This would call for having the desktop apps installed on your computers and syncing your files. If you are out of hard drive space, then you NEED to buy a bigger hard dive.
- If you are using the computer for personal use and are willing to forgo the ease of sharing files (with say family), for the ability to make that laptop last just a little bit longer before buying a new one. Then do NOT download the DropBox, GoogleDrive, Box, etc… app for your computer (notice I did NOT say mobile device!!). What you are looking to do is simply upload your files to these cloud storage areas (where your family can see them in a shared folder anyway), so that you can then *Delete those files off your computer.
*Make sure the upload worked first before you delete the photos, of course…