Windows 8 and pre-installed software on Microsoft Surface Pro weigh in at tens of gigabytes

Windows 8 and pre-installed software on Microsoft Surface Pro weigh in at tens of gigabytes
The Microsoft Surface Pro came with a huge promise - a tablet that is good for both work and play, with full on Windows 8, a kind of a crossover, the ultimate portable machine. In reality, there are many compromises it comes with and the most recent one is the fact that the operating system and the pre-installed software take away a mind-boggling amount of the internal storage for the 128GB model.

Basically, the user is left with 83GB of usable space, a shockingly low amount when you think about you just got a 128GB tablet. 

The information was allegedly confirmed by Microsoft itself, and if the same holds true for the 64GB Surface Pro that would leave it only 19 gigs of storage to the user, which is definitely a problem. On the bright side of things, you can always use the 7GB of free cloud storage offered via SkyDrive, and you have a memory expansion slot. Still, that huge amount of storage required for Windows 8 is one of the tradeoffs for getting the full work and play experience.

source: Softpedia

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Surface Pro
  • Display 10.6" 1920 x 1080 pixels
  • Camera 1 megapixel
  • Processor Intel Core i5, Dual-core, 1700 MHz
  • Storage 64 GB



1. JC557

Posts: 1925; Member since: Dec 07, 2011

I would like to know what included software will take up so much space. I know Office uses a sizeable chunk seeing as how it's a complete suite. Also possibly MS Security Essentials or the like. Maybe there'll be some entertainment or editing software as well. Otherwise there's no reason why the OS should be so large. Well, at least Surface Pro seems like a great tablet for productivity without sacrificing too much play.

4. Droid_X_Doug

Posts: 5993; Member since: Dec 22, 2010

MS has a patent on code bloat. When DOS 2.0 was being released, the mantra was 'DOS isn't done until Lotus won't run....' Fast forward to Windows v. 3.0 being released, and the mantra was 'Windows isn't done until the system must be upgraded....' It has been that way ever since. Fat code is inefficient code which takes up storage and requires CPU, RAM and GPU upgrades.

14. threed61

Posts: 259; Member since: May 27, 2011

I put Windows 8 Pro on a second hand Acer tablet and it takes up about 20 GB. It runs very well considering that this was a Windows 7 tab and it is as crappily made as Acer products typically are. There must be an exceptional amount of bloatware on the Surface Pro.

17. blattlaus

Posts: 75; Member since: Dec 12, 2010

Remember that Office is not included with the Surface Pro, only the RT. That makes it even stranger how much space is taken up. I have updated a laptop and a Win7 tablet to Win8 and the OS takes much less than 45gb- in fact the Win7 tablet I updated to Win8 only has 32gb total and it runs fine with 20-30 apps loaded. This doen't seem right to me especially since both surfaces are "Microsoft Signature" and have no pre-installed trial software.

18. waltah

Posts: 9; Member since: Apr 12, 2012

It should have a trial version of Office on it which takes up space. A good chunk of it is also on a restore partition that you can get rid of and put it on a usb drive.

2. Edmund

Posts: 656; Member since: Jul 13, 2012

comes in at 24GB on my laptop. I guess you have to make some sacrifices to enjoy quality software.

3. darac

Posts: 2156; Member since: Oct 17, 2011

Reality distorted much, fanboy?

8. rcranium

Posts: 32; Member since: Oct 29, 2012

Haters gotta hate.

5. big.e927

Posts: 94; Member since: Nov 21, 2012

Yeah, people should just stick with tablets, this whole surface wave will die down before it does anything relevant, especially with lack of apps, ridiculously high price points, and trade-offs like this that take away from the user/consumer, way to go Microsoft, bravo, just bravo..! Smh.

6. jove39

Posts: 2149; Member since: Oct 18, 2011 begin with Surface Pro is not a tablet...its ultra-portable PC. And it doesn't need any apps...because its real Windows (not RT). Price is justified...considering its competing with devices like MacBook Air.

12. 14545

Posts: 1835; Member since: Nov 22, 2011

I still think it's high, but that's just my opinion. Just as the MB air is. I can get an ultraportable from ASUS for 800 with upgraded GFX(Nvidia 620...needed for CAD). It's not the level of an "ultrabook" in terms of size, but it's only a half pound heavier and a 1/4 inch thicker. I personally think that Ultra books are slightly overrated.

7. 14545

Posts: 1835; Member since: Nov 22, 2011

While I generally agree with you, the *Pro* version of the Surface does not have a lack of apps. It can run most of the legacy applications that you could run on W7. However, yes, it is overpriced, and MS should realllllllllly learn out to lean their code some.

9. sadiqhashim unregistered

I so much believe that Microsoft has a good start, I never expect them to have it all from the start, the rest of the goodies will come gradually.

10. znellu

Posts: 82; Member since: Dec 05, 2012

Usually Windows installation takes up around 10 GB of disk space in any PC. The Surface Pro, which works on Windows 8 Pro, is a PC made into a tablet. You'll get to run whatever you run on your desktop (or laptop) in it. So this 10 GB thing is as expected.

11. jove39

Posts: 2149; Member since: Oct 18, 2011

45GB of space occupied in pre-installed software!!!! MS seriously need to put W8 on diet...hope...with next release (Win Blue???) customers get leaner version!

13. speckledapple

Posts: 902; Member since: Sep 29, 2011

I am not sure why its so heavy in size, id imagine its due to the fact that it is a pretty hefty OS but still, I think they can optimize that a bit. There are plenty of options for expansion so its not an issue.

15. ojdidit84

Posts: 462; Member since: Jul 16, 2011

Well I know that a fresh install of Windows 8 Pro x64 w/ Media Center is about 20-25GB of just the OS itself. Plus when the hard drive is formatted that takes away another ~10GBs of space. What the other 10GB of software is who know... Office certainly doesn't take up that much space.

16. lilhart

Posts: 23; Member since: Jan 22, 2013

Think about the cumulative updates the OS and Office are going to get in addition to other utility software updates...This should make a case for work only tablet not for play stuff...

19. jroc74

Posts: 6023; Member since: Dec 30, 2010

Seeing as how you are supposed to be able to use desktop software on it....having a large size isnt that bad. As long as there is lots n lots of internal storage and sd card options....and you can connect external harddrives to it.

20. MC1123

Posts: 1256; Member since: Nov 12, 2012

why is this system so heavy?! hope windows blue will change this!!!

21. pfroo40

Posts: 28; Member since: Jun 12, 2012

This isn't a surprise. It's the professional version of a modern, full featured operating system, not an oversized version of an OS from an MP3 player. Plan accordingly when purchasing based on your storage needs and expand if necessary. Or, complain about it and go back to playing Angry Birds.

22. Edmund

Posts: 656; Member since: Jul 13, 2012

Unlike google, Microsoft isn't interested in alienating its partners by subsidizing the crap out a product.

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