As we have learned in the past week or so, Microsoft is packing in a ton of improvements and in Windows 8.1, from Start Screen customization to enhanced Metro options.

But another thing the technology titan seems to be focusing on is optimizing the space requirements of the upcoming refresh of its flagship operating system. Redmond is trying to ensure that Windows 8.1 takes as little a space on the hard drive as possible.

According to a new report by Mary Jo Foley of ZDNet the update will require less than 4GB of space on the hard disk, as the software titan is trying to optimize the footprint of the upcoming refresh.

Microsoft has reportedly tried to remove old components and temporary files, while optimizing the NTFS compression to ensure that Windows 8.1 requires less space on local drives.

Additionally, those of you who have already removed the Windows 8 recovery partition, Windows 8.1 will reportedly not try to recover it.

Still this is for the Preview version of the operating system that is set to launch later this month at the BUILD developer conference. Things could significantly change by the time the RTM version hits general availability.

Nevertheless, it is a good seeing Microsoft trying to optimize the space requirements. Smaller and affordable Windows 8.1 tablets are going to have storage space at a premium, and a reduced footprint of the OS definitely helps in this regard.

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  • Daniel Card

    Hi, “He noted that 4 GB of free space will be needed to install the Windows 8.1 preview builds” – the preview windows 8.1 build (clean install) takes up just under 9GB on disk. This doesn’t say that the OS will be 4GB. To upgrade you need 4GB free space. I’ve run the update on the surface pro and RT. The pro took minutes to update thanks to the SSD, the RT took a while longer. Hope this info clears things up. Cheers