Posted by: kurtsh | December 24, 2011


Here’s the answer to a question that seems to be lurking on the Internet unanswered that I figured out on my own:

Q: What is “RESERVED SPACE AND OTHER CONTENT” on my Zune?  Why is it taking up 8.4GB of space (or whatever amount) on my device?  YES, I already tried changing that “Reserved Space slide bar” under Settings and it did nothing.


A: It’s lots of stuff.

  • Orphaned podcast content.  Do you use podcasts?  If you do, there’s a good chance that there’s old content in there from podcasts that you’ve since de-subscribed from.  Or content that you’ve downloaded manually outside of subscription.  This content is NOT considered part of your PODCAST storage but instead considered part of Reserved Space.  Yes, I know this makes no sense.  Just go with it.
    To delete it, connect your Zune to your Windows desktop, go to the Zune software on your desktop.  Now click DEVICE – PODCASTS.  Click on each podcast and look at the stuff there… are there old podcasts from a year ago in there?  If it’s not recent stuff, congratulations:  You just found some (or most) of the junk that’s clogging up your Reserved Space.  I cleared 3.5GB by eliminating orphaned podcasts.
  • Storage for Apps.  Have you installed Zune apps?  Those free games and tools that they offer off the marketplace?  It turns out they eat up a bit of storage each & how much depends on the app.  And this is NOT considered part of your APPS storage but instead considered part of Reserved Space.  I got rid of 500MB this way.
  • Content NOT managed by Zune PC client.  If some of the the music, videos, or pictures on your Zune are not managed (i.e. synchronized) with your PC through the Zune PC client software, it will not be categorized as music, videos, or pictures in the “storage bar”.  It will instead be categorized as Reserved Space.
    …this of course means that the Reserved Space isn’t actually being wasted.  It actually contains music/videos/pictures that you copied over to you Zune.  This content just isn’t classified as MANAGED music/videos/pictures. 

    If you want to “reduce” the Reserved Space allocation and instead recategorize your content in the music/videos/pictures categories, what you need to do is sync your Zune’s content to your PC:

      • Connect your device and go to a category – for example:  Music.
      • Select all the content that isn’t already being synchronized (or just select everything if you want it all synched and categorized as Music)
      • Right mouse click the content and select the right mouse menu item, “COPY TO MY COLLECTION”.
      • Watch the "Reserved Space” storage allocation in the storage bar diminish… and your “Music” allocation grow, as it shifts from one category to another.

I know there’s more.  I’ve heard that content that that you copy over as a guest while connected to someone else’s PC is considered “Reserved Space”.  I’ve also heard that remnants of failed copies can consume this space but I’ve not confirmed this.

A good explanation about what Reserved Space is, is available on the Answers site.

As I get more information re: “Reserved Space”, I’ll post it.


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