How to perform a data audit

We’re creating data at a truly astonishing rate; in fact, the amount of digital data in existence is currently doubling every two years (a claim supported by the number of hard drive recoveries we've completed year-on-year).This, it is widely agreed, is simply not sustainable.

Whilst this means that many of us are finding our various device are being filled to the brim with data, it’s worth remembering that the vast majority of us simply do not review what we have stored on our various drives. In fact, research has shown that, three months after it’s been created, 90% of all data is never accessed again. So, by managing our storage media more effectively, it’s surprisingly easy to ensure we’ve always got a few GBs free. Here’s how:

Delete your unwanted data

To clear up some storage space, the first thing you’re going to need to do is find and delete the files you no longer want or need.

So, simply open up your storage device, delete what you don’t need and then remove it from your device completely by emptying your Recycle Bin/Trash Folder. Don’t be too ruthless, here, though: the plan is just to erase anything you absolutely don’t want/need anymore. Just be careful or you'll find that you've accidentally deleted data you wanted to keep.

Create a backup file

Following this, you should move everything you want to keep (with the exception of files containing your operating system) into a file called Backup. Once you’ve done this, check the size of the file; you’ll then be far better placed to undertake the next step.

Choose a backup device

Once you know how much data you need to backup, you’ll be able to pick up a device with the storage capacity you require. Do bear in mind that you should choose something which has more capacity than you currently need to accommodate the data you’re inevitably going to create in the future, though.


Once you have your backup file and your backup drive ready, it’s time to – you guessed it – backup your data.

Delete your rarely used data

Now you have all of your files backed up, it’s time to return to your main storage device and delete some more files. This time, though, you can be as ruthless as you like.

Any data that you’re not accessing regularly can and should be deleted here. Repeat this process every few months and it’s unlikely you’ll ever run out of storage space ever again.

Did you forget to backup your data? Need a data recovery expert? Get in touch with Fields Data Recovery by clicking on the link today.