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How to use external storage on Xbox One

An external hard drive is essential nowadays, with gaming installs increasing as experiences grow more and more ambitious. The average console will now only fit a dedicated handful of major games before you need to jump into the settings and start deleting things.

Luckily, it’s an easy problem to solve, with Xbox One supporting the seamless insertion of portable hard drives via USB of varying sizes and formats. You’ll need to jump through a few simple hoops to get them up and running, but the whole process is relatively painless.

Related: Best Xbox One Games

Xbox One X

Making use of external storage on Xbox One is miraculously simple, much like the PlayStation 4 all you need to do is insert an external hard drive via USB to one of the ports on your console. You’ll need to keep this connected at all times, or risk losing data or needing to repair the drive each time it’s removed. 

It’s no dealbreaker, but losing a means of charging controllers or connecting a Bluetooth headset are sacrifices worth being aware of. Once you’ve inserted a new external drive into your console, you’ll be given an on-screen prompt asking if you want to use it for installing new applications or media or for other means – you’ll want to select the former option.

We’ve left some specific steps below to make things easier: 

  • Connect your external hard drive to an Xbox One USB port and format the storage device.
  • Enter a name for the drive 
  • Select install new things here to automatically install future titles on this drive.
  • Select format storage device.

You can also choose to transfer existing games on the internal hard drive over to the external one if you want to free up space, and all your saves and other relevant data will be carried along with them.

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