Microsoft’s 128GB Surface Pro ships with only 83GB free space and 64GB Surface Pro only has 23GB


Remember that little problem with the Surface RT? You know, the one where you buy a 32GB version, come home and open your brand new tablet then discover that you can only use half of that? Well, it looks like Microsoft’s Surface Pro is going to have the same problems, just on a slightly different scale.

The 128GB version of the Surface Pro will only have 83GB of free space for you to use when it ships, losing a whopping 45GB of space to things like the operating system, built-in apps and recovery partition. The 64GB on the other hand, will have only a measly 23GB of free space — around 40GB lost is huge when you’re device’s built-in storage is only 64GB total. Microsoft confirmed this in a statement to Engadget:

“The 128 GB version of Surface Pro has 83 GB of free storage out of the box. The 64GB version of Surface Pro has 23GB of free storage out of the box. Of course, Surface Pro has a USB 3.0 port for connectivity with almost limitless storage options, including external hard drives and USB flash drives. Surface also comes pre-loaded with SkyDrive, allowing you to store up to 7GB of content in the cloud for free. The device also includes a microSDXC card slot that lets you store up to 64GB of additional content to your device. Customers can also free up additional storage space by creating a backup bootable USB and deleting the recovery partition.”

So sure, you can definitely expand your storage options by purchasing an SD card or an external hard drive. But do you really wanna find out that you have to shell out some more money after dropping $900 on your new tablet? And an external hard drive definitely takes away some portability points from the machine. There are definitely ways to free up more space on a new Surface Pro, but the problem here is that you have to.

Maybe Microsoft should just advertise them as the 83GB and 23GB Surface Pros. What do you think? Let us know in the comments!

 [via Engadget]

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  • Bub

    @mukhi: True, it won’t help if the drive dies. But if the OS installation somehow becomes corrupted, it can still be of value. Much better, of course, to use separate media for your recovery installation. But that is something else the user must do for themselves is it not?

    The users most likely not to bother freeing the space are the same users who are unlikely to create their own recovery media. Giving them a recovery partition by default may not be optimal, but it is better than nothing.

  • AT

    @Col. Panek: Thanks for the tip. I do know where to look but as more people are rejecting Window 8, the existing stock of laptops with Windows 7 are getting bought up. It’s more of an inconvenience since I can always install a different operating system on a laptop. Cheers.

  • clockmendergb

    Typical misleading advertising.
    Its rampant these days
    Not solely a Microsoft thing.
    Of course its wrong to get governments to stop these practices,or so I am told.

    .But to be fair, at that price they could have increased the internal memory to cover the OS and not change their profit margin that much.
    In fact Microsoft could have led the pack and shown us they believe in openness and honesty
    by doing just that.

  • On the regular surface tablet, I’d be ticked off too. Comparing with other mobile operating systems, which deliver disk space very close to what was promised, it’s unacceptable.

    On the Pro, it’s a regular Windows 8 and Windows does take up a good amount of space. The same thing happens when you buy a desktop or laptop. It seems a little more obvious here, because of the small SSD sizes offered. It’s the exact same thing with laptops with small SSDs.

  • David

    I own a Nexus 7 with only 8 GB. So far it has not been an issue. Yes I do love this little tablet, but I primarily use a tablet to check the weather, solitaire, net flicks, occasionally browse the internet. For serious computing like reading Dotech I use my laptop.
    My children own ipads and I have used them, but to me they are just to big (10 inches). I really believe that Microsoft, Google & Apple are great companies and would really hate to think of all the things that we use every day that we may not have without them.
    The cost of the Microsoft Slate or Apple iPad are a little to much for me no matter how much memory they do or don’t have.

  • Col. Panek

    @AT: If you know where to look, you can find laptops without Windows from Acer, Samsung, even Dell. As for recovery partitions, if you have a OS that screws up a lot (i.e., Windows), I guess you’d need it. But I keep mine on a flash drive (2 GB) and I can reinstall it in 10 minutes if I need to.

  • Tom

    Imagine purchasing a 500HP sports car, only to find out that your had 180HP discretionary power at your disposal.

    This is simply wrong!

  • mukhi

    @Bub: i don’t believe in recovery partition since it’s not gonna add value anyway if the drive dies. backup in a different physical drive is always better.

    for the price of the tab, losing 45 GB is just horrendous, no matter whether you can add a microSD. honestly, i would take 128 GB ipad over surface pro any day. the legacy apps in win8pro are of no use unless you add a keyboard, and that will increase the price to unacceptable level (for me).

  • AT

    At that price, I would tell people to get a laptop but they all come with Windows 8 now.

  • Bub

    To be fair, it appears that much of that lost space is devoted to the recovery partition, something which adds real value. If Microsoft had made different choices, one might just as easily say, “There are definitely ways to make a recovery partition on a new Surface Pro, but the problem here is that you have to.”

    The question is whether most people would prefer to have a pre-installed recovery partition out of the box, or the extra free space. I don’t know the answer to that question. Do you?