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i3: How Much SSD Headroom?


New Member
I am trying out a SP3 i3 alongside an i5 8 GB/256 GB. After installing the programs and data I intend to have on the SSD, I have 20 GB out of the 64 GB free. Is this enough space for future Windows updates, and the occasional installation of a program, over the next year or so or is this a little too cramped for comfort?

I was thinking that the i3 might meet my needs more because it will run cooler than the i5 provided I offload data and the one major software program I run to the SD card.


Well-Known Member
You may need up to 15 Gb free for a Windows update. So you will have to keep an eye open checking your free space all time.


New Member
It's a question of being vigilant, but it can be done if you use the right kind of trickery. I got my hands on an i3, and have full office and visual studio running. A variety of other apps (PhotoShop) as well. In addition, I sync a large library through onedrive. The windows folder can be kept under control if you offload some of the ever-growing folders--i.e. windows\installer and package cache. it's possible to move those (though Microsoft doesn't recommend it) to your sdxc. In addition, make sure you clear out the download folder in softwaredistribution every once in a while. it's left me with 27Gb of free space so far. That's what I did with my 32gb surface rt to keep space available, and it's worked for the past (almost) two years.

Moreover, when a truly important update comes along (Windows 9?), I'd recommend a clean install anyway.


Super Moderator
Staff member
Move what you can to an 64 GB SD card for now. Currently 128 GB cards seem to be temperamental/problematic which will get ironed out ... by the time you need it they will be cheaper.


New Member
Is it possible to move it back once you have moved it to an USB stick?
I'm thinking later if you want to sell it, it better be as OEM as possible.


Super Moderator
Staff member
Is it easy or you need some skills/long step by step guide?
It depends, IF you plan ahead and use Imaging software to make a full image of all partitions on the SSD before you remove it then its very easy to restore those. I wouldn't say its really hard with good instructions otherwise... sort of a medium level task.


If you are doing this due to price of the i5, that is one thing, but seems like a weird move to make because to the temp. of an i5 unit.