Photoshop: Allow limiting Scratch Disk usage by free space available setting

  • 3
  • Idea
  • Updated 2 years ago
  • (Edited)
Hello,
Following your official advice on using SSDs as scratch disks where they are often boot drives can quickly lead to system crashes, and in my experience with Mac Pros, image corruption issues (lines of white added in color channels, garbled caches etc) when the system runs out of space. Not to mention it slows the system down to a halt where one cannot even save the file to deal with the issue.

Why not set a 'use as scratch disk until X GB left option on each scratch disk so that we can avoid this issue altogether. Especially since most SSDs perform worse as they near full capacity and that most use boot drives that can easily be filled by photoshop, this sounds like a simple but effective method of adjusting photoshop for contemporary systems. (I have 32GB Ram and 100GB free space on my SSD and PS still manages to fill it even when I limit history states)
Photo of derin.korman

derin.korman

  • 8 Posts
  • 0 Reply Likes
  • frustrated yet hopeful

Posted 2 years ago

  • 3
Photo of Bruce Jamieson

Bruce Jamieson

  • 59 Posts
  • 11 Reply Likes
I like your idea! I use my startup SSD for scratch since it's ridiculously fast. Once it fills up I get warnings from Mac OS that the disk is almost full, but I can't tell Photoshop to start using the other disks until the first one is used up. Setting a scratch limit would help me get the best use out of my scratch disks without giving Photoshop or Mac OS brain freeze.
Photo of Chris Cox

Chris Cox

  • 20280 Posts
  • 812 Reply Likes
Photoshop already intentionally leaves more space available on the startup disk and doesn't fill it up completely.  But MacOS can expand it's paging file to fill the extra space, and MacOS becomes very unstable once it's paging disk is full.
Photo of derin.korman

derin.korman

  • 8 Posts
  • 0 Reply Likes
I realize this, but as photoshop fills the RAM, MacOS also needs more paging space, leading both to a gridlock of no return. If if was possible to adjust this buffer to be greater, it would solve the issue. (MacOS is not going to fill tens of GBs on a regular basis after all). I run against this issue almost daily and I'm running  with 60-100GB free space on my SSD, with 32GB of RAM. They also run into it at work.
Photo of Chris Cox

Chris Cox

  • 20280 Posts
  • 812 Reply Likes
Photoshop only uses RAM up to the limit you set in preferences.
Yes, MacOS can fill tens of GB of swap file fairly easily.

It sounds like your documents need a lot more disk space than you have available.
Photo of derin.korman

derin.korman

  • 8 Posts
  • 0 Reply Likes
Majority of the documents I work with benefit from, and do not test the limits of my boot drive, however, some do. I do have space in a non SSD drive that photoshop can spill onto, but the way it uses the boot drive often brings the system to a grind.

If there was an option to drastically limit the space photoshop occupies for scratch use, we could use it with and without files that need more space, the files that need more space spilling onto other drives without taking space from MacOS. I did consider getting another SSD just to use as a scratch disk to eliminate this issue, but that is not a realistic solution for most of your user base, neither will most know the reasons for their performance issues.

If photoshop already leaves space on the startup disk, we are not asking for a new routine but rather interface exposure to a variable.