All Chrome OS computers come with a downloads folder. Anything you add to this folder will use your internal storage. Chromebooks typically come with a lot less storage than other types of computers. This is because Chrome OS is a cloud computing operating system.
This means you can do most things on the internet and it isn’t necessary to install programs. This is great because it means you’re always using the latest software. This is how most people now work when using a computer. The days of having to install programs for all the tasks you need to get done are over.
This is why the Chromebook and Chromebox come with less storage. Your local storage is needed for the operating system and any Android or Linux Apps you wish to install. All other files should be saved in the cloud. Ensuring you save all your other files in the cloud will keep your local storage for installing apps.
The Downloads Folder
Even if you are aware of how precious your local storage on your Chromebook is. It’s still very easy to forget about this when surfing online. When we need to download files or images off the internet. Your Chromebook will download these files to your downloads folder by default.
Even if you try to manage these files by regularly checking the files you no longer need. It’s very easy to let your downloads folder get out of hand. Before you know it. You can have hundreds of files. Going through each file to see what you need and what can be deleted would be extremely time-consuming.
This then creates an issue where we tend to avoid deleting any files. The problem with this is all these files are taking up local storage space unnecessarily. These files would be much better located in your Google Drive. A Cloud drive that comes as standard on the Chromebook.
How to avoid this happening
I’ve found a good way to stop this from happening. We all know we should not save our files in the Downloads folder. The reason why we do this is because of habit and that it’s easy to find files at a later date.
Using the method that I use makes it much easier to save your files in the cloud. It also makes it easy to treat a folder in the cloud as your downloads folder. By doing this you’ll keep your local storage for your Android and Linux Apps.
I’ve created a video on my YouTube channel, which will show you how to stop using your downloads folder for saving files and how to use a cloud folder instead. The great thing about this method is that it’s easy to stick with.
Your files are kept secure
There are many reasons why it’s best not to save files in your downloads folder. If you lost your Chromebook you would have lost all of your files. By saving them in the cloud. You still have access to these files.
Another reason why it’s not a good idea to save files locally. Is because you may lose these files for good if you ever forget your password. Even though you can easily reset your Google Account password. If you can’t remember your old password. You’ll not be given access to any files in the Downloads folder. This is because they are encrypted with your password.