Windows Phone ‘Reserved Space’

My Windows Phone is showing that almost half its paltry capacity of 8 GB is consumed by “reserved space and content from other computers”.

Windows Phone - Reserved Space

I’ve gone into the Zune desktop software –> Settings/Phone/Reserved Space and set the amount reserved to zero.

Windows Phone - Reserved Space of 0

So if the 3.36 GB isn’t “reserved” then it must be “content from other computers”. Hmm…. well I’ve never paired the phone with any other computer other than my awesome laptop, so what’s going on? This article strives to explain what could be going on. You might have to read that twice – I know I did.

I tried the “Erase all content” button. The phone and Zune desktop software both showed zero music, video, pictures and podcasts. This had the following effect:

Windows Phone - Reserved Space with no Media

I also found a few other links that asked the obvious question – how do I free up this capacity? Plenty of people questioning – but I didn’t find an answer that worked for me.

http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/winphone/forum/wp7-sync/how-to-shrink-reserved-space-or-content-from-other/5d81707a-ee5a-e011-8dfc-68b599b31bf5

http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/zune/forum/music-pc/reserved-space-and-content-from-other-computers/11ba50dc-d8b8-40f7-b0c3-2bd3a4af836c

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/953593

http://forum.xda-developers.com/archive/index.php/t-904321.html

The last link offers some hope. It suggests that the number may actually be nothing whatsoever to do with “content from other computers” or “reserved space”. Its actually space used by the installed applications and games. Of course this now seems perfectly obvious. Not only is there the cost of installing the applications – but also the data that each keeps locally – for instance the mail boxes, map cache, saved games etc. What’s strange though is how much this allocated capacity seems to fluctuate. I tried uninstalling some apps, deleting the mapping history and removing one of my outlook mail boxes. That reduced the number a fraction – down to 2.6 GB.

It would be great to be able to get more insight into what has that space allocated. Aside from resetting the phone (removing all apps) I’m not too sure where to go from here. Suggestions anyone? [Oh – and I’ve already tried installing a 32 GB memory card – that didn’t end well either].

3 thoughts on “Windows Phone ‘Reserved Space’”

  1. I have the same issue – I just ensure my content (video, photoes, etc) is moved off the phone as soon as I sync.. this minimises the problem, but doesn’t fix it per se..

    Let me know when you work it out!

  2. i just had the same issue.
    for me it was ages old mp3 uploads to my phone that i later renamed on my pc. also i only use the collection list and not the one under the phone icon.

    here’s how i reduced it:

    start up zune, click on the little phone icon, then go to music. you should be in that very strange list of artists, albums or songs you have on your phone.
    select every artist you got by left clicking the top item in the artists list, which should be a sum of all artists and then the sort option (a-z or z-a). if you click it you select everything.
    now rigth click on any of the selcted artists and choose ‘copy’.

    now do the same for the videos, pictures and podcasts.

    everything you can influence has now been copied into your local pc collection.
    you might want to go through it again because lots of stuff has been added that you thought you deleted a loooong time ago 😉

    i had 6gb reserved. now i only have around 2gb. which sounds right given map and ebook apps…

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