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How To Fix Photoshop Scratch Disk Full Errors

In this guide, we will be explaining how to fix Photoshop Scratch Disk full errors.

The “scratch disks are full” error in Photoshop usually occurs when there’s no memory space available on your computer to store Photoshop’s temporary files. When this error comes up, Photoshop either crashes or does not load at all. In this guide, we will be explaining how to fix Photoshop Scratch Disk full errors.

Possible Causes Of The Photoshop Scratch Disk Is Full Error

Photoshop employs the hard drive as temporary swap space, or virtual memory, when your system doesn’t have enough RAM to perform an operation.

This happens only when you have on partition in your computer. The scratch disk is the drive where the operating system is installed (for example, the C: drive on a Windows system).

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If the drive by chance runs out of space, it causes Photoshop to malfunction. A good instance is when you are editing and it crashes, this unexpected shutdown may lead to leaving of large temporary files on the scratch disk. This leads to Photoshop crashing and not reopening.

Ways To Rectify The Photoshop Scratch Disk Is Full Error

There are a few ways you could use to solve the Photoshop scratch disk error. Here, we enumerate some of those ways:

1. Free-Up Memory Space On Your Computer

Firstly, free up space and clear all the junk files from your computer. This grants Photoshop access to store more temporary files.

2. Delete Photoshop Temporary Files

You can safely delete temporary files associated with Photoshop to free up scratch disk space. Photoshop temp files are typically named ~PST####.tmp on Windows and Temp#### on Mac (where #### is a series of numbers).

3. Defragment The Hard Disk

The error can also occur if there is free space on the scratch disk. This is because Photoshop requires contiguous, unfragmented free space on the scratch disk drive. If you get the error message when the scratch disk drive shows a good amount of free space, run a disk defragmentation utility.

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4. Change The Scratch Disk On Startup

It is possible to switch between a number of scratch disks assigned to your Photoshop. This is a great solution if the error is not detected as “scratch disks are full” error.

  • On Windows, open Photoshop and press and hold down the Ctrl and Alt keys at the same time.
Image Credit: Help Desk Geek
  • On Mac, open Photoshop and press and hold down the Command and Option keys simultaneously.
Image Credit: Help Desk Geek
  • Select a new scratch disk from the Startup dropdown menu and click OK.
Image Credit: Help Desk Geek

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5. Clear The Photoshop Cache

If you can open Photoshop, delete temporary files from within the program by going to Edit > Purge > All (on Windows) or Photoshop CC > Purge > All (on Mac).

Note: Clearing the cache prevents you from undoing recent changes you made to images.

6. Clear Crop Tool Values

When cropping an image, an error could occur in Photoshop. This could be caused by wrong values in the options bar for the Crop tool being in the wrong units.

An instance is when you use 1200x 1600 when the units are set to inches instead of pixels creates a large file that could trigger the scratch disk is full message. To prevent this problem, select Clear in the options bar after you select the Crop tool.

7. Disable The Auto Recovery Feature In Photoshop

Automatic saving of files is a handy feature of Photoshop but the downside to this is that it eats up amount of memory usage on your computer. You can disable autosave if it isn’t of much consequence to you.

  • Open Photoshop on your device.
Image Credit: Help Desk Geek

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  • Click Photoshop at the top, select Preferences, and choose File Handling.
Image Credit: Help Desk Geek
  • Untick the box that says Automatically Save Recovery Information Every.
Image Credit: Help Desk Geek

8. Let Photoshop Use More RAM

Granting the Photoshop app more RAM usage is also a good way to fix scratch disk errors. This permits it to store more temporary files on the RAM space of your scratch disks.

  • Launch Photoshop on your computer.
  • Click on the Photoshop option at the top
Image Credit: Help Desk Geek

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  • Select Preferences, and choose Performance.
  • On the right-hand side pane, you’ll see a box labeled as Let Photoshop Use. In the box next to this option, enter the amount of RAM that you want for Photoshop to use. Then click OK.
Image Credit: Help Desk Geek

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Aroyewun Abdulahi
Aroyewun Abdulahi
Science and Technology, the easy life, I create non-mediocre contents based on Computer and Technology for easy understanding and use
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