Disk Space vs Bandwidth

How they are different, why it matters, and what to do when you're over quota.

DISK SPACE:

Disk space is the amount of space your website & email occupy on your host server. Most hosting companies limit storage space. Standard allocations are sufficient for most websites, so the most likely reasons you would use all available disk space is because you have accumulated too much mail on the server or you are using images with large file sizes.

Imagine website data is a car.
Disk space is like a parking garage that can STORE only so many cars.

Parking-garage

BANDWIDTH:

Bandwidth is the amount of data sent to and from your hosting account. Imagine your website hosting account is connected to the internet through a pipe. When someone visits your website or emails you, the data (text, images, video, email, etc) flows from your website to their computer or mobile device. The quantity of data that flows is your bandwidth.

Imagine website data is a car.
Disk space is like a highway that allows only so much FLOW of cars.

Busy-Highway

SOLUTIONS

Disk Space:

If you find yourself running out of storage space, here are things you can do to resolve it.

  • Delete email stored ON THE SERVER. (Deleting email from your personal computer may not help.)
  • Identify large files on your website and reduce their file size. You don't need large image files on a website. The web typically displays images at 72 dpi (dots per inch) and most often your images will need to be somewhere between 200 and 1800 pixels wide/high. To reduce file size of an image, reduce the dpi to 72 and reduce image dimensions to those appropriate for the place it will occupy on your web page. Additionally, you can compress your image file using an image manipulation program like Photoshop or an online tool.
    To resize and compress images: Resize-Photos.com
    To compress files (better tool): Compressor.io
  • Ask your website host for more disk space. This may increase the cost of your hosting service, but it is an easy solution.

Bandwidth:

The solutions to reduce bandwidth are similar to the solutions for reducing disk space.

  • Identify large files on your website and reduce their file size. You don't need large image files on a website. The web typically displays images at 72 dpi (dots per inch) and most often your images will need to be somewhere between 200 and 1800 pixels wide/high. To reduce file size of an image, reduce the dpi to 72 and reduce image dimensions to those appropriate for the place it will occupy on your web page. Additionally, you can compress your image file using an image manipulation program like Photoshop or an online tool.
    To resize and compress images: Resize-Photos.com
    To compress files (better tool): Compressor.io
  • Use a free file-sharing service. Sending and receiving large email attachments uses a great deal bandwidth. Instead, use a service like Dropbox to send and receive large files. It is a free service.
  • Ask your hosting provider to increase your bandwidth. It may increase the cost of your hosting service, but it is an easy solution.