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How Snapshot copies consume disk space

Snapshot copies minimize disk consumption by preserving individual blocks rather than whole files. Snapshot copies begin to consume extra space only when files in the active file system are changed or deleted. When this happens, the original file blocks are still preserved as part of one or more Snapshot copies.

In the active file system the changed blocks are rewritten to different locations on the disk or removed as active file blocks entirely. As a result, in addition to the disk space used by blocks in the modified active file system, disk space used by the original blocks is still reserved to reflect the status of the active file system before the change.

The following illustration shows disk space usage for a Snapshot copy:
How Snapshot copies consume disk space before and after you delete a file myfile.txt.