Surface Pro: 45GB for OS and pre-installed software, according to Microsoft [Update]

Back in October, a bit of a controversy flared up when Microsoft revealed that about 12GB of storage was required for the operating system and other pre-installed software on its Surface with Windows RT model, leaving just 20GB of free space for those who purchased its entry-level 32GB model. Microsoft later updated its Surface.com site to reveal that – once the OS, Office apps, recovery tools and other software had been accounted for – users could expect to see just 16GB of free space on the 32GB Surface RT model and 45GB on the 64GB model. 

The company hasn't yet updated its site with a similar breakdown for the new Surface Pro with Windows 8, which is set to launch in North America on February 9. But Softpedia.com says that they've received a statement from Microsoft revealing just how much space will be available to users who buy the new tablets. 

Microsoft is quoted as saying that the 128GB model – which will retail for $999 – will leave users 83GB of free space after the OS and pre-installed software have been accounted for. On the 64GB model – which will sell for $899 – the 45GB of reserved storage will leave just 19GB of space for users. 

We've contacted Microsoft to try to get further confirmation and additional info on this, and we'll update the article with those details when available.

Source: Softpedia.com | Image via Microsoft

Update: Microsoft has confirmed to Neowin that the 128GB version will indeed have 83GB of storage free (so 45GB of pre-installed software), while the 64GB model will have 23GB free (41GB pre-installed).

The company added that, in addition to the 7GB of SkyDrive storage, microSDXC card slot supporting cards up to 64GB and the USB 3.0 port allowing external storage drives to be connected, "customers can also free up additional storage space by creating a backup bootable USB and deleting the recovery partition".

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Which is why I bought the Yoga 13 with Pro, i7, 8GB RAM, and 256GB storage. Best portable ever. 90% of the time I use it as a tablet but when I need to get real work done, BOOM, flip and go...

So throw a tablet version of linux on there. This is just a pc people you can do whatever you want once you get it. Remove all that bs ms put on it.

daftperception said,
So throw a tablet version of linux on there. This is just a pc people you can do whatever you want once you get it. Remove all that bs ms put on it.

Yes, and replace it with a half-working piece of crap OS. People like you are funny.

Think of the Surface as an expensive toy, or at best, a secondary computer to a laptop or desktop; and one's expectations are more than met. Its that simple.

The update to this article is incorrect. You can't just subtract the free space that Microsoft is telling you from 128GB to get the size of the default install.

You only get about 119GB on a 128GB drive when it's formatted, so it's about 36GB. You get around 59GB on a 64GB drive when it's formatted, so the install on that is about 36GB as well. They're not going to change the install size on their models, that's just stupid.

jhoff80 said,
The update to this article is incorrect. You can't just subtract the free space that Microsoft is telling you from 128GB to get the size of the default install.

You only get about 119GB on a 128GB drive when it's formatted, so it's about 36GB. You get around 59GB on a 64GB drive when it's formatted, so the install on that is about 36GB as well. They're not going to change the install size on their models, that's just stupid.

You just said what's on my mind.

I find it very strange that a tech blog writer doesn't know that you never get the full 128GB even if the HDD or SSD if completely empty.

If you take the 36GB difference after you consider the size lost after formatting, substract 3.5GB for the Office trial (which you can easily uninstall), and subtract, let's say, 9GB after removing the recovery partition, we're left with 23GB for Windows+apps which is not unreasonable or different from the norm.

Edited by The Integral, Jan 30 2013, 3:21am :

meh so have a cry allready jeesus its a full blown tablet PC not a toy, my windows install and allt he apps i use is up to 55gig allready

DKAngel said,
meh so have a cry allready jeesus its a full blown tablet PC not a toy, my windows install and allt he apps i use is up to 55gig allready

Exactly, it is a full blown Tablet PC therefore it needs space. Do not offer a 64GB model, go directly for 128GB.

That is just crazy! straight away i would create the USB recovery pen, and then reinstall Windows 8 on a fresh formatted drive. Would save a lot of space

There's very little reason why a recovery partition absolutely requires to take up a lot of space. Instead of wasting away a magnitude of gigabytes Macs ship with a recovery partition that only takes up 600-700 MB. The OS X installation files are automatically downloaded when reinstalling your Mac. If for whatever reason the drive is corrupted the installation files are downloaded through EFI.

Don't come with "OMG! But what if I'm in the middle of the Sahara Desert without Wi-Fi and need to reinstall my Surface while sitting on the back of a camel?!?!" or something similar.

Don't forget, most laptops only have one drive bay so if you 128Gb SSD runs out what do you do, bin the laptop? No you change the drive.

And if its a primary usage machine, then I'd say 128Gb is borderline currently.

However this is being blown out of all proportion
So my 32Gb RT is looking a bit low, OK
SD Card, 32Gb=£12, 64Gb=£36
Problem?

(In actual fact I've still got plenty of space after installing everything I want so far, I haven't deleted the recovery partion and I have an empty 32Gb SD in the slot)

If had a 64Gb IPad and decided I wanted some more storage, what are the options?
Bin it and pay £750 for the 'new' 128Gb version....

I know I'd always rather have the option of upgradability....

It's the single thing I dislike about the Lumia 920 /HTC 8x..... No SD Card slot.

First of all who wants 64GB surface pro ? Just buy the 128GB version it's $100 more.

Second, move the recovery partition to a usb stick, that's going to save some GB's

Third, buy a microsd card. At least there is a slot for it. Listen up apple and acer w700

Fourth, store some stuff in the cloud.

This doesn't bother me because of my 25gb skydrive. One thing though, most of this space is taken up by legacy drivers for all your peripherals. Maybe they could move driver support to the cloud? Again to me not an issue but you know the crapplers are gone be all over this.

I' not sure why this has raised such concern. With the expandable storage and Win 8 being a bases on the cloud, I understand why they would market them with a higher number than available.

At least you're not stuck with only 83GBs of space. I never keep personal files on any of my laptops or PC's anymore. Everything is either on a USB drive or external hd.

Like some here have already said, when has a company sold a device that came with the amount of space that it was advertised as. I don't think it's right but they're not the first ones to do that.

Wow... So much intellectual dishonesty, this whole page was numbing.

Linux, OS X, Android, and iOS all consume space on the devices and computers they are installed on.

In the PC class this is less of an issue, because of larger storage and the ability to easily add more storage space to the computer easily. Guess what, Surface Pro is a Tablet and a freaking PC. Just like a TabletPC made back in 2002.

I know the Apple mentality of devices and hardware has tainted the intelligence of the consumer crowd, but to see this outrage on a technology website like Neowin is just ridiculous.

In contrast to other Tablets, just like WindowsRT, Microsoft has provided an SDXD slot and USB ports that allow UNLIMITED storage options. You can literally hook a few Hubs to the USB port and add a 50TB RAID Array to the Surface Pro.

So until you can add a 50TB RAID Array to an Android tablet or an iPad, QUIT comparing this tablet to them with regard to 'limitations' in storage space.

This is a computer that can run Crysis 2, literally, and yet people are arguing about how the iPad or a goofy Android tablet has more free space. Really?

I see a lot of 'outrage' and Microsoft needs to explain this or clarify or justify the storage space. If that is true, then everyone that made that comment to remain intellectually honest must immediately call Apple, Dell, HP, and every other PC maker in the world and complain that the 500GB hard drive they are advertising only has 4xxGB of free space.

**If people remember just a few years ago, a 40GB hard drive was fairly common and even with Windows consuming 10GB of that 40GB, was more than enough for program installations. There is still more than enough space for 99% of all user's software needs, and if you want to carry around 60GB of Music and Photos, put them on a USB Stick, and if you need more room to install software, buy a 64GB SD card and dedicate it to the device and install software on it.

PS As for Music, if you use a Microsoft Account on your desktop PC, it will read all your Music and create a cloud version of your Music library that you can literally access and stream to your device from anywhere. (It will also 'sync' that content to other PCs if you want to have your music follow you without network access.)

Edited by thenetavenger, Feb 1 2013, 2:27am :

if apple said its ipad had 32gb but only 200mb free, people would be up in arms.
yes with the surface you can add storage, but thats not the point, its expensive! for so little free storage on the device.....
also windows 8 is poo!

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