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How Much Storage Do I Need on a Laptop? - Explained

Dave Miller with Online Cloud Security

Dave Miller – Tech Enthusiast & Security Expert – October 11th, 2022

how much storage do i need on a laptop

We all aspire to have a laptop with sufficient storage for our data to store over an extended time, yet many still wonder, when considering a new laptop purchase, “How Much Storage Do I Need on a Laptop?” Usually, storage is expensive, which might raise the price of the device you’re about to purchase, whether it’s a laptop or a smartphone.

However, one thing is sure: Having storage capacity is essential; without it, your gadget is useless. A small amount of storage is also not a smart idea since, as your information collection expands, you will need more storage as you gather more data. Additionally, managing the data cannot always be your main focus because it might be time-consuming.

So that you can find the answer to how much storage you should have on your laptop, I’ll go through several factors that will simplify your decision-making process.

How Much Storage Do I Need on a Laptop - Explained

Data Asset - Why We Need Storage?

Data is a significant resource for every business and individual. The manner you store your information affects how easy it is to access, utilize, and safeguard because it is one of your most valuable assets. Despite this, the typical adult’s brain can store billions of bytes of data. However, we don’t always recall things because of how the human brain works.

It’s because if we did, you’d go mad trying to remember everything and wouldn’t do anything. We, therefore, have both mechanisms for remembering and systems for forgetting. And we thus required a method that would enable us to save our data indefinitely without worrying about it.

As a result, even if you’re buying a device to store your data, you still need to consider how much storage you’ll need. Similarly, when buying a laptop, you would ask yourself how much storage do i need on a laptop to finish all of your tasks and save essential data.

How Much Storage Do You Need for Your Laptop? Here are the Costs

storage for laptop

Data is read and written from the storage by your laptop. Your laptop’s performance is impacted by how quickly the storage system loads data. The cost of data storage is high. Although it wasn’t always this way, the cost of storage technologies has rapidly decreased in recent years. It remains a pricey choice when considering purchasing a smartphone nowadays. Today’s price of storing 1 MB of data is less than 0.01$ per MB, compared to 411 million in 1957, which indicates how far technology has come.

Today, all laptops come included with 500 GB or 256 GB of storage, differentiating price tags from other factors like GPU and CPU. The price increases when storage capacity is more readily apparent. You may want to decide between HDD and SSD storage in addition to storage space.

Traditional hard disk drives (HDDs) read and write data to rotational discs. SSDs, on the other hand, employ more recent technology that stores data on quickly accessible memory chips. As a result, costs will vary according to the kind of storage you need.

If money is not an issue, you ought to choose SSD. You can get a laptop with an HDD for less money. However, the amount of storage and the type of storage also raise the cost. Therefore, to stay within your budget, you must select the one that offers the best value for your money.

Data Storage History

Although people have been utilizing various means to store essential data since the beginning, our history of data storage dates back to 1947. The earliest cave drawings we know date back over 40,000 years, including knowledge that ancient people saved.

But the development of digital data storage also affected how we create, manage, and save information for us. Our society has changed since the 1947 discovery of the transistor and the 1956 invention of the integrated microchip. We have attained incredible computational power in just over 50 years.

Magnetic drums and tapes were replaced by hard disk drives, followed by mixed media, flash, and, eventually, cloud storage, which I will also cover today. However, we must bear in mind the necessity for data storage. Undoubtedly, our need for data storage has grown as technology advances in various fields.

How Much Storage Do I Need on a Laptop? Type of Users

Given that each individual uses a laptop for a different purpose. The answer to the issue of how much storage I need on a laptop varies from person to person. According to the requirements of the user. Some people only need 512 GB of storage, while others need 256 GB. However, for some, even 1 TB is insufficient.

Another question that many laptop users ask is if a laptop can still be tracked after factory reset? We answer the question can a laptop be tracked after factory reset here.

Average User

The best laptop storage for you will thus rely on how you utilize it. You won’t require more than 256GB of storage on your laptop if you simply use your laptop for web surfing. However, you’ll need lots of storage if you are a hardcore user. Thus, you can choose capacities of up to 512GB depending on your demands, although 512 Gb is typically plenty for most people.

Professional User

If you work as a designer or engineer, you may need to utilize files for powerful engineering software, which will require a lot of data storage. Additionally, installing this softwares requires a lot of storage as well. Then you have to select a storage space of about 1 TB.


256 GB is more than plenty if you’re a student. A laptop with this amount of storage typically allows students to easily keep all their presentations, papers, reports, assignments, images, and videos while maintaining mobility. However, students with technical backgrounds may purchase laptops with 1TB of storage as it will not worry them about what to keep and what not.

Check out the best laptops for cyber security students here.

How Much Storage is Available for the User

Aside from purchasing, remember that just because you have 256 GB, 512 GB, or even 1 Tb of storage doesn’t always mean you can use the entire amount. Installing your operating system and the most frequent applications will take most of your storage.

Installations of the majority of Windows versions will use up to 25–30GB. So, with a 250 GB HDD or SSD, you should have about 220 GB of space. So bear in mind that as you use more and more applications, the quantity of storage you will have access to will go down. It is even without saving your own files yet.

Check out our top 5 picks for most secure online cloud storage apps.

What Else Options Do You have – Cloud Storage

Making data accessible and secure is now more critical than ever. And to continue meeting your ongoing requirement for storage space. You don’t have to rely only on your laptop’s hardware storage. A relatively affordable answer to this gets provided by cloud storage, which can get expanded with almost unlimited storage capacity.

The main benefit is that you can access your files whenever possible, even if your phone or computer is unavailable. Therefore, considering how much storage do i need on a laptop, you shouldn’t be too concerned. You will always have the choice of using cloud storage. So, when purchasing a laptop, purchase the most capacity you can afford, and you can use the cloud storage nonetheless.

How Much Storage Do I Need on a Laptop? - Bottom Line

You don’t want to mess up your decision to purchase a laptop, which is difficult. But when making the final choice, storage capacity can be a determining factor. The sort of user you are and the type of work or data you plan to save on your laptop will often determine how much storage you want. Your budget will also dictate your choice

In the end, whatever you decide to purchase, you need simply bear in mind two things: first, you must select a laptop that allows you to update the storage later so that you won’t have to purchase a brand-new laptop. Second, store most of your data on the cloud, which is more accessible, safe, and affordable. In addition to being a safer alternative, cloud storage is also what you should aim for when it comes to your data storage in general.

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Dave Miller with Online Cloud Security

Dave Miller

IT Consultant at Online Cloud Security

Dave Miller is an IT Consultant for Online Cloud Security and has over 7 years of experience in the Information Technology space. He also specializes in repairing laptops & computers. In his spare time, he loves to talk about new technologies and hosts monthly IT and Cyber Security meetings in the Houston area.

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About Online Cloud Security:

Online Cloud Security is here to recommend you the most secure devices, from laptops to smartphones, we only want to provide you with products that we have tested and used ourselves for online security. Every product that we recommend is heavily inspected and tested for security against hackers, viruses, malware, and any other intruders that may want to steal your information. 

Recent Posts:

Online Cloud Security Logo (500x500px)

About Online Cloud Security

Online Cloud Security is here to recommend you the most secure devices, from laptops to smartphones, we only want to provide you with products that we have tested and used ourselves for online security. Every product that we recommend is heavily inspected and tested for security against hackers, viruses, malware, and any other intruders that may want to steal your information. 

Recent Posts: