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external drive seems to be losing storage space quickly

external hard drive storage

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#16
IndyBlue

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Hi, RKinner,

I sincerely apologize for not responding sooner--work has been crazy as we finished up stuff before the holidays.

So, I followed your advice and erased the external drive and started over. It worked really well. After I did my first backup, only 7% of the drive was being used. But here's the thing: it seems to be filling up relatively quickly--roughly 0.5% a day. I'm just working from home, and I don't save huge files. In fact, I'm constantly emptying my download folder, emptying the Recycle Bin, and moving important files to my job's One Drive cloud storage.

I bought this computer and the external drive in fall 2016. I use my computer constantly and it has been working beautifully since I got it. The external drive only became "full" recently. There was one incident, however, that may have had something to do with it. I hadn't looked at my external drive in ages to check on it, and when I did (this was last month or late October), I noticed that it hadn't done a backup since June 2021! I immediately researched the issue and updated all the Western Digital tools. I discovered that support for WD Backup had ended and that I now needed to download Acronis True Image for Western Digital, which I did. After doing all these updates, my external started backing up every hour as it had done in the past. With one difference, though: my external hard drive started to fill up quickly.

Apologies if this is a stupid question/conjecture, but I thought that the external drive backed up one's computer at a given moment. Let's say I had 30 files. Then I wrote some letters, downloaded some stuff, and took some pictures of my cats. The external would back up everything that was present at the time of the next back up. Then, let's say I deleted all the my downloads, emptied the garbage, and was left with only 40 files. I'm assuming that the external does not save all the stuff I deleted, correct? Or does it save a 'version' of the computer at every juncture? I just want it to back-up the most current version when it does its back-up. Does that make sense? I'm not sure whether I'm explaining this clearly. (And I obviously may not understand how external drives operate!)

My computer says that all my drives are healthy and that everything is functioning as it should be. When I have time, I will investigate cloud storage since I will probably be moving to another country soon, and don't want to risk losing everything in the move.

I would love to hear your thoughts and any additional guidance you might have re the external hard drive and cloud storage when you have time. Many thanks again for all your help, and once again, please forgive me for not responding sooner.

I hope you have happy holidays!

 

Sincerely,

Indy


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#17
IndyBlue

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Happy New Year!

No rush to reply, but I was wondering if you had any additional advice re my external hard drive: the amount of storage space decreases relatively quickly, and I just don't understand why. (Please refer to my previous post for more detail.)

No rush to reply, of course--I totally understand that people may still be on holiday. 

Thanks again for all your help!


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#18
oliverpowell

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Hi for hard drive keep  losing disc space there are mainly three reasons  including a huge hidden recovery partition, computer virus, and invisible unallocated space out of the whole disk partition.

Did you install suspicious programs from unknown websites or open an unknown attachment file in an email in recent days? If yes, be alert. It's pretty sure that it's the virus that eats up your hard drive space! You can try to  run the anti-virus software on your computer to scan and remove the virus for the first attempt.

 check if the System Restore is turned on, for example, in Windows 10. Go to "Control Panel" -> "System and Security" -> "System" -> "System protection". Click the System protection to open "System Properties", where you could see the "Protection Settings".

Usually, the Protection is set to 'On' for the System drive. And that's how your hard drive lost free space more and more rapidly. This feature is creating and storing your computer system files and settings on a regular basis and kept in restore points, which are large files.


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#19
IndyBlue

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Hi, Oliver,

Please forgive me for not responding earlier--work is crazy for me (I work in pandemic emergency management). I haven't had a chance to dig into your advice yet, but I wanted to thank you and to let you know that I will do this very soon. 

 

Thanks again for your help! I'll be in touch sometime this week.

Sincerely,

Indy


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#20
oliverpowell

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Hi,

According to me there are various reasons why hard drive is losing space rapidly. Did you install suspicious programs from unknown websites or open an unknown attachment file in an email in recent days? If yes, be alert. It's pretty sure that it's the virus that eats up your hard drive space!

 

Edit by phillpower2: Removed malware removal guidance from post.


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#21
phillpower2

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Direct to oliverpowell,

 

Only trained security experts are permitted to offer malware assistance and this only on the malware removal forums, we appreciate your willingness to help others but please adhere to the GTG Terms of Use.

 

  • Because of the potential for harm, only staff members approved for malware removal are allowed to offer malware removal advice or reply to malware topics.

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#22
IndyBlue

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Hi Oliverpowell,

Thanks for your reply. I'm SO SORRY that I never responded--work is so busy, and I rarely have any free time.

I'm 99.9% sure it's not a virus. I have really strong virus protection, and I use a powerful VPN when I need it.

My external drive is still behaving strangely. According to diagnostics, there's nothing wrong with it. I think it's just saving a new version of my C drive every time it updates (hourly), instead of just updating things that have been changed, added, or deleted. It's really annoying. I'll probably just erase the hard drive when it gets too full and start over again.

I really think I ought to get cloud back-up as well. Any recommendations? I did some research but am not sure about which one to use. (And I did the research a while ago, so now I've forgotten which one is best.)

Thanks again for your response, and I'm sorry for the delay in answering.

IndyBlue


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#23
IndyBlue

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Addendum: I just reread your earlier post, and you wrote this:
 

check if the System Restore is turned on, for example, in Windows 10. Go to "Control Panel" -> "System and Security" -> "System" -> "System protection". Click the System protection to open "System Properties", where you could see the "Protection Settings".

Usually, the Protection is set to 'On' for the System drive. And that's how your hard drive lost free space more and more rapidly. This feature is creating and storing your computer system files and settings on a regular basis and kept in restore points, which are large files.

If I were to turn off Protection for the system drive, wouldn't that be risky?


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