Faculty and Staff: Reducing the Amount of Storage You Use in Google


Starting in July 2022, Google Workspace for Education will impose a limit of 100 TB of pooled storage shared across all users within Anderson University. Students, faculty, and staff are encouraged to reduce the amount of storage that they use in Google Drive, Gmail, and Google Photos to help ITS meet this goal by July 2022. This article outlines simple steps to easily identify and remove items that are no longer needed.

Steps You Should Take


Step One: Confirm How Much Storage You're Using

Go to https://drive.google.com/settings/storage to view how much storage you are using in Google Drive, Gmail, and Google Photos. ITS recommends that faculty and staff stay below 50 GB of total space. This does not mean that if you're using less than 50 GB that you don't need to follow the rest of these steps. Each of us should reduce the amount of space that we are using to help the campus achieve our goal.

Step Two: Review and Delete Large or Unnecessary Files in Google Drive

Go to https://drive.google.com/drive/quota to view a list of files that list you as the owner organized by the file size. Pay attention to the icons that indicate a shared file. If you are the owner of a file that is shared, everyone will lose access to the file if you delete it. We recommend clicking on the details icon (circle around the letter i) to view the specific information about who has access to the file. Delete any large or unnecessary files.

Step Three: Delete Drive Content that Resides in Multiple Locations

Go to https://drive.google.com/drive/quota and look for duplicates of the same file. They should be listed together on the list because they will be the same size. As you click on the files, the file location will appear at the bottom of the page. This will help you identify where the file is stored and which file to keep.

Step Four: Move Personal Files and Photos

Go to https://drive.google.com/drive/my-drive and https://photos.google.com/ to look for any personal files and photos that you might be storing on your AU account. Download the files and photos and then transfer them to a personal device or online storage solution. Remember to delete the files and photos from your AU account once they have been stored elsewhere.

Step Five: Search for and Delete Large or Unnecessary Files in Gmail

Go to https://mail.google.com/. In the Search box, type has:attachment larger:10M (or a higher number for larger files). Click the Search icon or hit enter. Select the emails you don't need and then click Delete.

My Storage Amount isn't Going Down!

As you delete items from Drive, Photos, and Gmail, the items are sent to the trash where they will remain for 30 days for Drive and Gmail and 60 days for Photos until they are permanently deleted. All items in the trash still count towards your total storage. To get rid of items faster, you can go to your trash in Drive, Photos, and Gmail and use the permanently delete option. 

When am I Possibly Going to Have Time to Do This?

You don't have to invest a lot of time in these steps. Spending 15-20 minutes reviewing your files and deleting what is unnecessary can make a significant difference. ITS believes that the best approach is to spend small pockets of time cleaning things up as time allows.

Consider Using Shared Drives

While you are looking at your stored considers, it may be a good time to consider moving files from your My Drive to a Shared Drive. This will not reduce the amount of storage that you are using, but it is the best way of sharing files with your team. Several years ago, Google introduced Shared Drives as a way for a group to own a file instead of an individual. The benefit to this is that when someone leaves the university, the team retains access to the file. Otherwise, if the shared file is stored in someone's My Drive, it will be deleted when the owner's account is deleted. Additionally, updating team membership automatically updates the sharing of all the files instead of someone having to manually manage the sharing of individual files and folders.

Questions? Need Help?

If you have questions or need some help, please let ITS know by submitting a Raven Solutions request.

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Article ID: 142653
Tue 4/12/22 2:53 PM
Thu 4/21/22 11:31 AM