clearing computer memory space.

AndyGSteam Posts: 26 Just Starting Out*

Hi again Folks,

Could anybody help with a couple of points please. My computer is telling me that I need to clear some memory.


When a HitFilm project has been created, and exported to the export folder.

1, Is it then common practice to delete from the computer (the video files) that the project was created with, to save memory space, or are they left on the computer somewhere in a file ?

2, I am assuming (because I have tried it), that when the video files are deleted from the computer, (the created project) is safe and can be still viewed etc because it is `safe` inside the export folder ?

3, When the project has been created and exported to the export folder, then the video files (that created the project deleted). If you go back into HitFilm to create another project, the `old` project is still in the projects list, and all the construction details can be viewed on the timeline (but the video content is not there). How do I delete the now `redundant timeline` from the projects list, and will the project still be safe in the export folder ?

4, Is the export folder, that the completed projects are stored in, just another computer generated folder (and completely separate from HitFilm), or is the Export folder part of the HitFilm system, such that if HitFilm ever stopped, would the projects be lost forever, and so should they all be transferred yet again into other folders.

Thanks for any comments on any of the 4 questions.

I am a Dinosaur and still on HitFilm 13


  • triforcefx
    triforcefx United StatesPosts: 1,486 Moderator

    I assume by “memory” you’re referring to hard drive or ssd storage? Usually memory on a computer actually refers to the RAM of the computer.

    Storage stores data long-term, while Memory (RAM) keeps the information the computer is using right now to run everything on your system.

    If your computer is alerting you about actual Memory (RAM), then you probably have very little RAM to work with (probably less than 4 GB). Windows should be creating a Page File to help, but that can still push the limits on a low spec computer. The best option would be to put more RAM in your computer, or get a new system. Please list your specs so we can get a better idea of what you’re working with.

    If the computer is saying something along the lines of “you are out of space on drive C:”, then you are talking about data Storage.

    Most creators prefer to keep a copy of all the footage they’ve ever shot and all the projects they’ve ever made. This does take up a lot of storage space though, with larger creators having dozens of high-capacity drives just to store it all. However if you don’t consider your original footage valuable, you can delete it if you like.

    Your Original Footage, Project File, and Export File are completely distinct files on your computer. Once you have your Export File, it doesn’t rely on anything else that came before it. You can delete the original footage and the project file and HitFilm itself if you really want to.

  • NormanPCN
    NormanPCN Posts: 4,139 Enthusiast
    edited March 10

    2) Yes, your exported video file is independent and self contained of all other things. Independent of the source video media and the Hitfilm project file. Being in the export folder has nothing to do with being "safe". That folder is just a ordinary folder of your choosing. You can move/copy that video file anywhere you please.

    3) The project file is what describes your timeline and all that editing stuff in Hitfilm. It is a file created by Hitfilm for Hitfilm. It is independent of your video source media. So deleting your source video media does not remove the project as you described. Deleting the project file does not remove the source video media. To delete/remove the project file then simply delete that file. The next time you open Hitfilm it will notice the project file no longer exists and remove it from the recent projects lists.

    4) The export folder is just a folder in your harddisk/ssd. Nothing special to Hitfilm. Hitfilm defaults the folder to a certain default but you can set that to be any folder of your choosing.

  • tddavis
    tddavis Posts: 5,181 Expert

    I find it beneficial to get an external hdd for long term storage of my original, unedited video files. I move them as needed to the scratch drive when editing and keep a copy on the archive drive.

  • FlyingBanana78
    FlyingBanana78 Posts: 500 Enthusiast

    Exactly what I do as well, I have a 4tb external drive which is helpful as I can move between computers and not use HD space on multiple computers. The major issue I have had with low drive space was mainly due to windows updates. Not sure how windows 11 is handling updates but previous versions kept all downloaded updates on the HD and over time takes up space as well and it never removed them, that was left up to the user to remove all the old update downloaded files.

  • AndyGSteam
    AndyGSteam Posts: 26 Just Starting Out*

    Thanks for the helpful replies Folks.

    I will have to sort out some external drive memory device then, any idea of models best suited to the purpose ?

    My PC is a Lenovo ideapad 330s the core 8th generation.

    I am very limited in my knowledge of the use of the pc, and pc terminology in general I am afraid.

    Thanks again.

    Andy G.

  • triforcefx
    triforcefx United StatesPosts: 1,486 Moderator

    If you care about speed and performance most, get an SSD like this one ($90):

    If you’re just looking for something cheap, this could be a good option ($40):

    This isn’t the fastest storage, but there’s a lot of it for a good price ($90):

    Please note, I don’t have any experience with any of these products, I’m just going off of the information provided on Amazon. They are positively reviewed products by well-known companies.

  • Triem23
    Triem23 Posts: 20,604 Ambassador

    Just one additional note to the excellent advice given.

    Hitfilm projects do NOT store video/picture/audio media, but store "pointers" to where the media used is located. If you delete the original media, but retain the project file you won't be able to re-edit the project at a later date.

    Storing old video files is a function of "personal level," (a hobbyist might not need to retain original media if happy with the final edit, while one who does this for a living should definitely retain files for at least a couple of years, in case a client wants to revisit a project), and ability to afford storage. I actually have project files dating back to the 1990's, but also, just before Xmas stumbled across a 24 hour flash sale of 5TB external drives for $40 each and bought 25TB of storage. I then copied any drive I had which was older than 2015 to a new backup, and gave the older drives to an editor friend. However, in my case I'm in the process of moving from the US to Ireland and my older drives had external power, so moving old data to USB powered drives means I don't have to mess around with power adaptors as well. Still, $250 for 25 TB of storage was a lucky find.

  • AndyGSteam
    AndyGSteam Posts: 26 Just Starting Out*

    Thanks, for your reply, much appreciated.

  • AndyGSteam
    AndyGSteam Posts: 26 Just Starting Out*