Spotify, one of the most popular music streaming services in the world, is possibly slowly killing the storage devices of users on the PC, Mac or Linux.
An investigation by Ars Technica revealed that for the past several months, the Spotify app has been writing massive amounts of junk data to the storage drives of computers, a problem that could be shaving off years from the expected life span of the devices.
Spotify Storage Overload Problem
The problem has been reported by users on several outlets, including Spotify's official forum and on popular online forum Reddit. There have been cases where hundreds of gigabytes were written in an hour, with recorded amounts occasionally reaching into the terabytes.
The issue places an unnecessary burden on the storage devices of users, especially on solid state drives that only have a specific amount of write capacities. With Spotify writing massive amounts of junk data on an SSD over several months, the drive will likely fail much earlier than it should.
Three reporters from Ars Technica with Spotify installed on their Mac computer or PC were able to reproduce the issue easily, with the app writing about 5 GB to 10 GB of data in less than an hour. When the app was left running for more than a day, the written data reached capacities of more than 700 GB.
In addition, the problem still occurs even when the app is not actively streaming music and idle, with Spotify keeping on writing junk data into the storage devices of computers.
How To Solve Spotify Junk Data Issue
The problem seems to be connected to the Mercury.db string of the app. There are some manual methods of dealing with the problem, but because of the obscurity of these proposed solutions, it seems that the best way to address the issue for now is to completely shut down Spotify or uninstall it on computers until the problem is fixed.
According to Spotify, version 1.0.42 will fix the problem in the app. The update is currently being rolled out, but until it reaches all users and is tested to have correctly addressed the problem, Spotify users are recommended to disable the app on their computers.
Spotify needs to address the problem as quickly as possible. While the music streaming service reached 40 million paid subscribers in September, it does not have the luxury of resting upon its laurels because of the constant development of its current competitors and the introduction of new challengers.