Manage storage on Xbox One

The main things that take up space on Xbox One are games and apps. If your Xbox fills up, make space by uninstalling items you're not using. If there isn’t enough space when you try installing a new game or app, we have tips to help you make room so you can install it right away.

Any data for your games and apps (preferences, saved games) syncs online when you sign in to Xbox Live, so when you reinstall a deleted game or app, your saved data comes right back with it.

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Manage your storage

Xbox One comes with either a 500-gigabyte (GB) or a 1-terabyte (TB) internal hard drive. Most of this space is available for games and apps, though some is reserved for saved games, console software, and other system functions. So, even with no games installed, you won’t see the full 500 GB or 1 TB free.

If you need more storage, set up an external storage device.

To manage both your internal and external storage:

  1. Press the Xbox button to open the guide.
  2. Select System > Settings > System > Storage.

In the right column under Manage storage, a graphic for each drive displays the percentage of space used, the available free space, and what games, apps, or features are using storage space.

Select your device to:

View contents. This takes you to your games and apps, where you can see how much space each game or app is using. If you want to uninstall something, highlight it, and then press the Menu button and select Uninstall.

Transfer items from internal to external storage. If you have games that are using up a lot of space, you can transfer them to an external drive. To learn how, see Transfer multiple games at once on your Xbox One.

Uninstall things. This takes you to your drive manager, where you can select any game or app and then select Remove. You can reinstall from here as well.

Set as screen capture location. Select this if you want this drive to capture your screenshots and game clips.

Free up hard drive space

Several other options help you to free up space:

  1. Press the Xbox button to open the guide.
  2. Select System > Settings > System > Storage.
  3. In the left column, select:
    • Clear local saved games. This deletes games saved to your hard drive, but they’ll still be saved to the cloud.
    • Clear local Xbox 360 storage. This deletes Xbox 360 games saved locally, but they’ll remain in the cloud.
    • Make more space:
      • Leftover add-ons. This removes any add-ons that remain after you’ve uninstalled a game.
      • Shrinkable games. Any games listed here have 4K features. If you’re on an original Xbox One or an Xbox One S, you can shrink the game, removing the 4K assets, and it will still be playable.

Set up an external storage device

Video: Add extra game storage

Watch the video, Add extra game storage. Note This video is available in English only.

Set up external storage

To use external storage with Xbox One games and apps, your hard drive must:

  • Hold 128 GB or more
  • Connect via USB 3.0

When you first connect, Xbox will prompt you to format your device. You can use it for Xbox games and apps, or for personal media such as pictures, music, and video. (Xbox will treat devices that don’t meet the above requirements as media storage.)

If your Xbox doesn’t recognize your external drive, see Troubleshoot external storage detection on Xbox One.

Note Xbox will recognize only two external drives at one time.

If you cancel formatting when you connect a storage device, you can set it up later:

  1. Press the Xbox button to open the guide and select System > Settings > System > Storage.
  2. Select your device, and then select Format for games & apps.

Cloud storage

When you’re connected to Xbox Live, your saved games and any personal data for your games and apps are automatically stored on both your Xbox and in the cloud. That way, you don’t lose game position when you play at a friend’s house or get a new Xbox.

Note A regular connection to Xbox Live is required to keep your data in sync. Playing offline could put your online data out of sync. Your data refreshes every time you connect to Xbox Live.

For more info, see Xbox One cloud game saves FAQ.

How to play media from an external drive

Install the Media Player app from the Microsoft Store. In Media Player, you’ll see your external USB drive. Select it, and then choose something to play.

For more info, see Video, photo, and audio on Xbox Media Player for Xbox One FAQ.

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