A little while ago, my husband and I wandered into Best Buy. My laptop is still functioning well but is clearly on its way out.

We scoped out possible replacements and I really liked how small the Chromebook was. If I decided to purchase one in the future, I’d be using Google Drive as my hard drive.

Then I got to thinking about this blog post I wrote. I’ve been steadily seeing my file space on Google Drive grow since I got it down to 2G. I didn’t understand why this was happening. I regularly go through my files and delete unnecessary ones.

After some research, I not only found out what the issue was, I ended up with less than a gig of used space! How awesome!

If you use Google Drive for anything, here’s how to find out where all your space is being used:

Storage Summary

Just like with your smartphone, you can’t solve any space issues if you don’t know what is taking up all your space.

Visit https://one.google.com/storage and get an in-depth look at where your space is being used.

Large File Storage

Now that you know WHERE your space is being used, it’s time to hone in on the culprits! What files are taking up the most space, and do you still need them?

You can check here: https://drive.google.com/drive/u/0/#quota

This will show you a comprehensive list of your largest files, in descending order, which you can right-click on and select ‘Remove’ from the menu.

Be sure you don’t need the files for anything before you select ‘Remove’. You will get one last opportunity to review these files in your Trash bin, which you should empty on a regular basis as well. If there is a file there that you change your mind about, right-click and select ‘Restore’. It will return to where it was originally stored.

Photos

If you’re storing your photos on Google Drive, you may want to reconsider.

Those photos count against your storage space, whereas if you upload your photos to Google Photos, they do NOT take up any space on Drive.

Use Google Formats

I didn’t know this, but if you are using Google formats for your files, they take up zero space on your Drive. However, if you are uploading Word documents, Excel spreadsheets and PowerPoint files, they will.

By comparison, Google Documents, Sheets and Slides do not take up space.

There is an option to change this setting. After switching this option on, anything uploaded to Drive will automatically be changed to a Google format. To do this, visit https://drive.google.com/, and click on Settings (the little gear icon) and select ‘Convert uploaded files to Google Docs editor format’. Click done.

While these tips really help, it’s important to schedule a time each month to review and cull your files, anywhere you have them stored.

Bonus Tip – Use Google Takeout to backup your data:

Google Takeout - Denise Riches | VA

Book a free consultation call with me and we can discuss how to get the most out of your business.

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