Sharepoint site - how to reduce it's size - compaction?

Copper Contributor



we have a 4Tb sharepoint site (in 365) which had versioning on. it's been turned off now and the versions have been deleted, so I'd expect to see the size reduce, however it hasn't shrunk.


compacting the database frees up free/white space - is there an equivalent in sharepoint?





4 Replies


In SharePoint Online, there isn't a direct equivalent to compacting a database to free up space, so far I know. However, there are some steps you can take to potentially reduce the size of your SharePoint site:

  1. Empty the Recycle Bin: Deleted items are moved to the recycle bin, where they continue to occupy storage space. Emptying the recycle bin can free up space. You can do this by going to the recycle bin in the SharePoint site settings and permanently deleting items.
  2. Audit and Remove Unused Content: Conduct an audit of your SharePoint site to identify and remove any unused or unnecessary content. This could include old documents, unused lists or libraries, and outdated pages. Removing unnecessary content can help reduce the overall size of the site.
  3. Optimize Large Files: If you have large files stored in SharePoint, consider optimizing them to reduce their size. This could involve compressing images, converting documents to more efficient file formats, or splitting large files into smaller ones.
  4. Archive Old Versions: While you've already turned off versioning and deleted old versions, it's possible that some versions may still be retained due to versioning settings or retention policies. Review your versioning settings and ensure that all unnecessary versions have been removed.
  5. Review Site Collection Quotas: Check if there are any site collection quotas or storage limits configured for your SharePoint site. If the site is nearing its storage limit, consider increasing the quota or implementing storage management policies to prevent future issues.
  6. Monitor Usage and Growth: Regularly monitor the usage and growth of your SharePoint site to identify any trends or patterns that may impact its size. This can help you proactively manage and optimize storage resources.

Keep in mind that SharePoint Online manages storage resources dynamically, and it may take some time for changes to reflect in the overall size of your site. Additionally, SharePoint Online storage is managed at the site collection level, so reducing the size of individual sites may not immediately impact the overall storage allocation for your organization. The text and steps were edited with the help of AI.


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we can't remove the files in there and they are already compressed images where applicable.
I've emptied the recycle bins - both of them

it was 2Tb of data uploaded twice it seems, so the versioning doubled the space.


If you have already emptied the recycle bins and optimized your files as much as possible, and the size of your SharePoint site has not reduced as expected after turning off versioning and deleting old versions, here are a few additional steps you can take:

  1. Check Versioning Settings: Ensure that versioning is indeed turned off for all document libraries in your SharePoint site. Sometimes, versioning may still be enabled at the list or library level, even if it's disabled at the site level. Double-check the versioning settings for each list or library to confirm that it's disabled.
  2. Verify Deletion of Versions: Confirm that all versions of documents have been deleted successfully. While you've deleted versions, it's possible that some versions may still be retained due to caching or replication delays. Monitor the site for some time to see if there are any changes in the size of the site.
  3. Run SharePoint Online Management Shell Commands: You can use SharePoint Online Management Shell commands to analyze and optimize the storage of your SharePoint site. Commands like Invoke-SPOSiteOptimization can optimize site storage by removing unneeded files and reclaiming space. However, be cautious when using PowerShell commands, as they can have significant impacts on your SharePoint environment if not used correctly.
  4. Consider Migrating to a New Site: If reducing the size of your existing SharePoint site proves to be challenging, you may consider creating a new SharePoint site and migrating only the necessary content to the new site. This can help start fresh with a smaller and more optimized site structure.

Please, keep in mind that changes to the size of your SharePoint site may not be immediately reflected due to caching and replication mechanisms in SharePoint Online. It may take some time for changes to propagate and for the size of the site to update accordingly.

thanks for the info. the site is so large we cant migrate it to another one as we don't have the space. versioning is off, and the site has shrunk 90Gb now, so maybe it's just a timing thing.

Invoke-SPOSiteOptimization doesn't show online as a valid command - no google results for this.