I read an short article a pair of main ago around Microsoft raising the Office 365 storage limit to one terabyte. Office 365 is a equipment where the end user pays a monthly fee for the ms Office suite in addition to hosted warehouse on OneDrive. I really wonder just how much warehouse is enough? can I yes, really generate and save sufficient Word, PowerPoint, or Excel papers to fill one terabyte? I chose to dig into it additional to see just what will certainly fill 1,000 gigabytes.

You are watching: How many songs can a terabyte hold

Office Documents

It is approximated that 85,899,345 pages of Word files would fill one terabyte. Now, if you deserve to truly create that lot content, you have actually a significant archiving task on her hands. Ns am currently reading the book “John Adams” by David McCullough; it is approximately 650 pages lengthy which means I could archive around 132,152 books of comparable size. It has taken me virtually two month to check out this publication so it would certainly take 66,076 months or 5,506 year to read my whole library. I cannot read that fast, nor do I have actually that much life left in me.

Music Files

Assuming that an median song bring away up five megabytes, one terabyte could fit around 200,000 songs or 17,000 hours of music. How numerous songs perform you have actually on her iTunes best now?


You could fit approximately 500 hrs worth of movie on one terabyte. Assuming each movie is roughly 120 minutes long, that would be around 250 movies. I carry out know people who have actually that numerous movies in their library, so it is possible that lock could develop a database of movie to fill the space.


You can fit approximately 310,000 photos in one terabyte. You can fit even more if you provided a compression algorithm. Exactly how would girlfriend even catalog that countless photos? through time, by subject, by category? Suddenly, we are facing huge data issues in our personal lives, and also we room going to need similar tools to have the ability to make feeling of all of our potential data stores. With digital photography, it is feasible to take it a the majority of photos without ever having to worry about development costs, so perhaps 300,000 photos is not out the the question.


With advances in technology, we have a the majority of potential storage space available come us. Microsoft win the opened salvo, but I suppose Google Drive, Dropbox, Box, and also others to monitor suit. One terabyte tough drives space not uncommon right now and also even though we have actually the potential filespace, deserve to we to fill it responsibly? If we can fill it, perform we have the an abilities and tools necessary to store track of our digital belongings? perhaps there is a brand-new IT task category—personal archivist—created for those individuals drowning in your digital “stuff.” My point is that we must take a step back and evaluate the data that we room keeping and ask ourselves: “Just due to the fact that I have the right to keep it all, do I need to? carry out I have actually the an abilities and tools crucial to ever discover what i am spring for?”

If us don’t need it and we can’t manage it, perhaps it is time come clean out the digital garage. Execute you have to clean out your digital garage? permit me recognize your thoughts.

About Kelly Brown

Kelly Brown is an it professional, adjunct faculty for the university of Oregon, and academic director the the UO applied Information management Master’s degree Program. The writes about IT and business object that keep him up in ~ night.



78 think on “A Terabyte of warehouse Space: just how Much is also Much?”

MUBEEN HAIDER December 7, 2015 at 2:14 am


sam February 18, 2019 at 6:48 pm

I have 2,157 movies in 1080p (some are in 4k but not many) and also 220 TV shows ranging from 720p-1080p.Currently using less than 18TB of room across a server, NAS, and external. Mine “permanent” solution will be 5x12TB HDD’s in RAID 5 because that storage and also 5x12TB HDD’s in raid 5 ~ above a synology because that backups.

Matt February 18, 2019 at 9:12 pm

It start to become an problem of just how much perform you really need “online” at any given time. Of those 2,157 movies, how plenty of of them walk you watch in the critical year?

How many of them can be discovered online at any type of given time ~ above an online streaming website?

Can you simply store many of lock on a handful of external hard drives and also have an online directory of every drive and also plug castle in as needed?

In the old job (15 year ago). Tv collection dvds didn’t exist, movies had tendency to it is in $10 and up, and also many things just tough to find.

Now things room cheap, readily accessible.

And photos. Human being used to take 1 or 2 great photos at an event like a picnic. Currently they take 20 – 50. But instead the deciding which ones come keep, they store them all. Image have come to be the boring house videos of the 80s-90s. How countless events will someone care around years in the future. I have maybe 1,000 image from as soon as i was born to period 18. Someone who transforms 18 in 2030 will certainly probably have actually over 100,000. Even at 5 secs a picture, it will take someone 8hrs a day, 17 days just to look at all of them. The value of the pics will drop and become something that is constantly hauled around, however rarely looked at.

David Bernazani February 19, 2019 at 3:10 am

Matt- for this reason true. Every time ns take a photograph with mine iPhone, ns don’t take just one, i take 3 or 4. But, uneven some who may just keep them all, ns am continuous deleting most of them other than the finest ones. I have maybe 200 or for this reason documenting the last 2 year of my life, and still haven’t bothered to upload castle somewhere, due to the fact that I have actually iCloud backup. Ns don’t salary anything for extra “cloud” storage, since I don’t require it.And unfortunately, storage technology is getting past my understanding. I have no idea what “RAID 5” is, and also some the the other stuff Sam created about.As because that streaming: I’m starting to stream part shows and movies, however right currently I only subscribe to streaming Netflix and also CuriosityStream. I understand there room others, however who has actually time to watch them all, or the enhancing money the takes to pay monthly subscriptions because that ea h one? Oh, and also I likewise still obtain some Netflix dvd’s by mail, since for part mysterious reason, many of the recent movies are not accessible to stream on their site. In fact, I’ve excellent searches of one assortment the movies, both brand-new and old, that I’d favor to watch (from Casablanca to back to the Future to Gladiator) and also couldn’t find a solitary one! ns had always thought sites like Netflix had gargantuan libraries the most any movie you can think of come watch, but it’s actually quite limited. Anyway it provides me glad the I have my own tiny video library of every my faves.

PS walk anyone notice that the location to this thread, “A Terabyte of warehouse Space” is currently sounding kinda quaint? Sorry, Kelly! little look how fast things change in this field!

marlon ferguson December 14, 2015 in ~ 9:20 am

I have actually a substantial collection of image (20k) or so and also 13000 and also growing in music library , my trouble is the i have 300 dvds or therefore that ns purchased most of which ns wish come save, I spent alot of time and money over protecting these (300 key dvd changer pioneer) and also would like to preserve, I store researching media servers for my self, however if ns was going to take trip cant really take through me, and if i was to convert them all digital and also throw dvds away, would choose to have actually a multiple bay kind storage and also a cloud option…..any think on my conglomerated media issue…..use google journey 15 giguse apologize idrive 200 gighave onedrive for organization 1000 gig

none that which occupational for my finish issue ????

eddie contreras, mpa, multiple sclerosis in the Quinnipiac U. February 28, 2018 in ~ 6:50 am

Two things. First it stands to reason Microsoft’s model offers us the impression that points are totally free or cheap – this branding strategy is important, since IT students and also techies prefer to scavenge because that deals come by devices – as soon as these tools room branded bundles climate they are perceived as great buys – Microsoft appears to make us think that it together a one avoid shop for every little thing which is arguably a an excellent marketing idea – my second impression Professor is that world commoditize things because of this they seem more valuable with more stuff –do you agree?

Rhea Adams December 24, 2015 at 3:19 am

how plenty of average sized publications can it is in stored in a megabyte, assuming that the records are no compressed?

☺Nick☺ April 8, 2016 in ~ 7:37 pm

I run 5TB and it’s full. Unless you clock 480p, 1080p and the upcoming 4k videos will eat a TB away.

Time will pass, and also you’ll uncover this object a joke. I’m hope to double my an are in the close to future.

PaulG23 April 10, 2016 in ~ 10:48 am

You wrote that a terabyte = about 85,899,345 pages of native docs.

Okay, no human can read that much, but what if you were responsible because that reviewing and also determining what is vital in 1 terabyte of data storage, where some is video, part is documents, part is audio recordings? and also by important, I average that someone’s life or liberty was at stake.

Such is the dilemma facing criminal defense attorneys these days in part federal cases. The government dumps that lot discovery, and more, top top the defendant and his counsel. Then the prosecutors produce at trial simply that carefully selected proof which they think will assist them convince a jury to judge the defendant. Judges generally don’t call for the federal government to especially disclose their exhibits, or intended trial testimony, or even prior declaration from government trial witnesses, before trial. So, the defendant and defense counsel can not anticipate and prepare for what is in reality produced.

The defendant and his/her counsel who have actually the temerity to go to attempt cannot have reviewed all of the evidence, and are, therefore, taken advantage of, and also surprised, in ~ trial.

Result: most defendants (95 – 97%) that all federal criminal defendants plead guilty prior to trial. Those who execute go to trial shed 90 – 95% that the time. Those who shed at trial and then appeal, shed in much more than 90% that the appeals. Overall an outcome – in federal criminal cases, the defendant has around 0% chance of getting acquitted.

Data overload is simply one of the prosecution methods deliberately used by prosecutors come destroy any type of chance of a fair trial.

There oughta be a regulation – because that example: instances where the prosecutor produces an ext than the tantamount of 100,000 pages of discovery materials, should be dismissed because that violating the due procedure right of the defendant to gain a same trial.

That would provide federal defendants a little an ext of a fighting chance.

isaac vacation July 21, 2016 in ~ 11:06 am

I have actually 600 CD’s and also I am looking to save them on a flash drive. What size flash drive I might to need to store perhaps

Kelly Brown write-up authorAugust 19, 2016 at 1:20 pm

A stormy estimate the 100,000 songs at ~5 megabytes per tune would same 500 gigabytes or fifty percent a terabyte. Another means to consider this is that a CD holds approximately 700 megabytes so with 600 complete CD’s you would have 420 gigabytes or almost half a terabyte. In either calculation, you would require storage equaling about 500 gigabytes.

David Bernazani October 5, 2016 at 2:53 pm

I have about 800 DVD & Blu-ray movies now, and also by the moment I retire and move to Romania in a couple of years I expect to have roughly 1,000. This is a most boxes. I am researching the possibility of delivering them every to flash drives, or some various other kind of memory device.I would require at least 4 Tb of storage to organize them, so just one Tb doesn’t seem like a lot come me.But I’m worried about long-term storage, data degradation, and accessing them in a practically way. So clearly I have more research to do!Thanks for her info.-Dave BernazaniLafayette CA

Kelly Brown article authorOctober 5, 2016 at 4:34 pm

Dave, thanks for your comments. I have remained in the service long enough that ns remember working with bytes and kilobytes so mine perspective has actually partly to execute with my history. It can be that the terabyte is the brand-new megabyte and also I just need to record up :-). Great luck getting whatever moved over to storage. I see that they do a 1Tb speed drive now so 1000 DVD’s down to 4-5 flash drive is quite a an are savings.

David Bernazani February 15, 2018 at 4:52 pm

Kelly, simply as a follow-up, last year we obtained priced out of our lovely apartment and also decided to move early on to Romania, so critical summer we packed up every those DVD’s (along with numerous other stuff!) and also shipped it every there. Looks favor I don’t have to worry around storing mine collection, yet who knows? some day I may want to, just as a backup.Meanwhile, a terabyte appears to be farming smaller every the time…I’m likewise sure that the next layout for movies will be prefer that of CDs: not a physics item at all, however digital versions save on computer on an “iVid”— some new version that the iPod. That still might sound strange to some, yet it’s only a an easy matter of storage.

Kelly Brown write-up authorFebruary 16, 2018 in ~ 10:13 am

David, many thanks for the follow-up. Ns think you room right about the future of movies. Who states that you won’t have actually a 1Tb or 2Tb SSD on one “iVid”. They might even it is in removable therefore you keep a tiny collection of cd driver on your shelf. The other alternative is cloud storage however you need to have access to the cloud in bespeak to make use of it. If i am backpacking in the wilderness area, ns most likely will not have actually a signal to it is in able to accessibility my movies. If I gain lost however, accessing mine cloud storage to watch movies will be the the very least of my problems :-).

David Bernazani October 5, 2016 at 9:04 pm

Kelly,Yeah, ns remember floppy discs, and even life prior to VHS tapes. My very first computer didn’t even have memory; every routine (read: game) I want to run, I had to insert a floppy to run it.Heck, ns remember my an initial computer course in high school, we saved programs top top a file punch-tape ! The computer wasn’t even actually at school; we were hooked approximately a college via some kind of beforehand pre-internet connection, and used teletype makers to connect with it!Memory to be at a premium. I’m astounded today at how much it’s increased. A terabyte in a flash drive is like something the end of Star Trek! and also my iPhone most likely has much more power than the whole Houston control room for the Apollo moon missions.Cool times, huh?

Kal October 13, 2016 in ~ 5:05 pm

I think this is an exciting article. That looks like I might be amongst the youngest top top this thread. You stated “maybe the terabyte is the new megabyte” and that girlfriend haven’t caught up or other to that effect. I think that’s the nail on the head. You room thinking that data storage in one antiquated way. You’re thinking of cds and floppy discs and how lot a common song, movie, or file takes up there is no recognizing as that a movie, audio file, or file is no a resolved measure. Who else pointed out 4K video, well with advances like blue ray, 4K, mp4, upcoming wearable technology, and so on we will certainly need much more data storage for the exact same amount that content. Example: 100 songs in mp3 layout will be different then the lot of storage because that 100 songs in mp4 format.

Hope the all provides sense I just stumbled throughout this thread and thought I’d put in mine thoughts.-Kal

Kelly Brown write-up authorOctober 14, 2016 in ~ 10:06 am

Hello Kal,

Thanks for your thoughts. You are correct and I more than likely need to upgrade this blog post. Ns was talking through someone the other day about Blu-ray, 4K and mp4. Lock all require a lot much more storage space. I watch 1 Tb flash thumb drives now and also 2, 3, and also 4 Tb backup drives from reliable providers such together Seagate. The price is coming down as well. I wonder yet whether storage devices are space working to keep up v the new content styles or space content service providers developing new formats to take benefit of developments in storage technology. The actual question yet is as soon as will we view the an initial consumer 1 petabyte drive? carry out you treatment to make any predictions? :-). Thanks for her note.


Bill December 2, 2016 in ~ 10:00 pm

If a petabyte = 1000TB, I would bet 2020.

Do friend remember MS-DOS determined on 256KB because that “base memory” since it was such a high number that customer PC’s would never ever need an ext than that? (of food you do…that was a rhetorical inquiry :D) i think that presumption was outdated about a week after it to be implemented…

I do not think it has been all progression though: multiple sclerosis WORD for DOS did just as great a job as my existing WP for my purposes, and it walk it quicker and much more efficiently, and also it right on a floppy. However, I run a music server full of hi-rez music on one XP machine, and it sound as an excellent as vinyl (for records that were digitised indigenous vinyl) and also the pc was complimentary ( a girlfriend was throwing the out) and the DAC runs rings roughly the finest redbook CD players and it costed about as much as a middle of the road customer CD player. I already mentioned my HD… i was just reading about DACs the perform virtually as great as mine, yet are the size of a tobacco lighter!

So, there have actually been advances. But additionally setbacks. No a day goes by the I execute not curse my Windows device (usually 30 seconds be fore the crashes), ns devote about a thousands times an ext memory 보다 my first computer had all up simply to manage viruses, and whilst styles like mp3 allow people come carry about thousands of “songs” it provides ones ear hurt listening to them…

That said, v a retirement xp machine, A$100 portable HD, and a A$1000 DAC one deserve to have a digital front finish for a HiFi setup the rivals a $10,000 turntable!

Kelly Brown article authorDecember 3, 2016 at 6:25 pm


Thanks because that the good comments. Yes, a petabyte is 1000 terabytes or 1 quadrillion bytes. So, the concern remains, just how did we acquire from 256,000 bytes to a trillion bytes and also a future quadrillion bytes. I think a lot of it needs to do v the physics and also the fact that we can continue to pack an ext information right into the same an are and us are moving from mechanical disk cd driver to heavy state drives. I understand we will hit physical restrictions in the future and will need to think smarter around how huge of programs us make. We might have become sloppy about how lot memory and storage we usage for common programs as your illustration of native points out. Granted us do have nice graphical interfaces now that we did not have in MS-DOS versions but I are afraid that we have actually let this programs balloon “because we can”. The physicists and also electrical engineers designing and also creating combined circuits have done us a favor by continuing to push the physical borders but lock have additionally made us lazy.

I am envious of your music server. The sounds favor a an excellent setup that serves you an extremely well.

David Bernazani October 14, 2016 in ~ 6:52 pm

Kelly, execute you average flash drive or tough drive? I think the highest-memory difficult drive (as that 2015) is/was 16 terabytes. It shows up that Moore’s regulation is reaching its theoretical limits (computer storage doubling every 18 months), however it should host for at the very least a couple of more years, which means that 16 Tb hard drive must reach a petabyte in roughly 9 years. However I wouldn’t it is in surprised if we have a 1petabyte tough drive much sooner. Together for a speed drive, ns imagine it might take a small longer, as flash drives always seem to lag behind hard drives in storage space.And by then ns think we will be draw close the limits of storage storage– what perform you think? i think a petabyte was what Arthur C. Clarke figured would organize the entire lifetime’s precious of memories, emotions and also all various other data from a human mind (as written about in 3001: The final Odyssey). Or possibly it to be 5 Pb? Must inspect on this…..

See more: Is A Covalent Bond Stronger Than A Hydrogen Bond Ing, Is A Hydrogen Bond Stronger Than A Covalent Bond

Bill December 2, 2016 in ~ 10:33 pm

Like you i think we will view acceleration in storage size increases. (See mine prediction above) therefore many people want to have the ability to carry every video clip ever made around in your smart phones! The just thing that will slow it down will certainly be if civilization decide that cloud warehouse is a an excellent idea. (I carry out not…) i guess there will be another limitation caused by the size of an electron, yet although ns really have actually no idea, i imagine we are not nearby to that yet! i think by the moment that we get 1 PB customer storage, though, it will be flash. The technology is diminishing in cost exponentially (I remember lashing out and buying, i think a 640MB, thumb drive for $130 in Singapore, whereby were cheap. This to be a most money (I might have bought a cheap laptop in Singapore because that 3X that), however it to be a vast amount of storage (I still usage it together an archive because that old WP files) but it to be a bargain at the time. Now I hesitation to pay A$30 for a 32GB ignorance drive, since I think next week I can get a 64GB because that that!) and really ns hope in a year or two relocating parts because that storage will be old history! I would think, perhaps naively, well-built hard state would have to be an ext reliable than motors and bearings?

David Bernazani December 3, 2016 in ~ 10:25 pm

Bill,Yes, I likewise want to watch the end of moving parts for storage devices. This is why I’m wait to get a brand-new laptop/tablet until the 500gb SSD price come under a little more.But her idea that human being want “every video ever made” in their phones do me think:It’s not as crazy as it very first sounds.First of all, no one desires EVERY movie or video; everyone has certain tastes and “filters”, picking just the ones the really like. (And think of how many negative movies there space out there!) That’s why I have actually 800 DVDs at home and also not thousands, which I might easily have these days, now that girlfriend can discover literally hundreds of them because that sale virtual for as small as 75 cents. I’m selective (picky) around which people I want to own.

And I currently DO have about a thousand song on my 64g iphone– again, just ones i like. Today there space phones that can hold, what, ten thousand? Twenty? More? If no that countless yet, there quickly will be. And also 20,000 song is probably the max virtually anyone might possibly want on a phone.Now apply the analogy come video. It’s all just a concern of storage, and also if phone warehouse keeps doubling choose it has actually been, in a few more years, your “crazy” idea of putting a thousand movie on your phone sounds downright inevitable!And as I don’t know many world who would have the time to watch an ext than a thousand movie on their phones, ns don’t think numerous would want much more than that. Which way your “crazy” dream that “every video ever made” on a call would, in a sense, become reality. And also not too far in the future in ~ all, mine friend.See friend there!

Bill December 4, 2016 at 12:40 pm

Hi David

Yea, ns probably currently have more music than I can ever listen to in my music server–3TB, more than likely 300K song (mostly Hi-rez–I prefer quality over quantity!)

It is funny though, I have music albums (vinyl–lol) that ns may have listened to thousands of times but I could probably perform in a few minutes the number of movies I have actually watched twice, and also I think over there are maybe a fifty percent dozen I have watched an ext than twice. Even though warehouse is cheap, it would seem a waste because that me to have actually too plenty of movies. Most of the movie I have actually watched double are since I have wanted come share through my daughter (who choose me has eclectic tastes) cult standards I love. It is pretty easy for me to discover movies favor those in the library…

My question–and it is just curiosity–do you yes, really watch thousands of movies over and also over again, or perform you have a expert interest that renders it valuable to have actually all those videos? I have actually a friend who wrote a publication on philosophy and film: that owns much more movies than I have ever watched!