As one of the most popular music streaming services in the world, Spotify is installed on millions of PCs and Macs. But users may want to temporarily uninstall the app, after Ars Technica reported it contains a bug that has been writing gigabytes worth of data onto users’ storage devices.
Complaints of the behavior, which affects the Windows, Mac, and Linux versions of the app, have appeared on Spotify’s forums for over five months. There have been similar reports on Reddit, Hacker News, and other sites.
Ars found that the Spotify app can write as much as 5GB to 10GB of data an hour to a drive and can accumulate up to 700GB of junk when the app is left running for more than a day. This occurs even when the app is idle and no songs are stored locally.
While this junk data obviously takes up precious storage space, it can also dramatically erode the lifespan of a drive, especially solid-states.
The problem is apparently linked to database files with titles that include the “Mercury.db” string. “In the past 8 hours, Spotify wrote about 25GB to my drive. Size of mercury.db is 89MB in my case,” said user MaxK_DE.
Users have posted a few manual methods of dealing with the issue, but they require some legwork. Spotify has supposedly fixed things in version 1.0.42 of the app, which is rolling out now. If it’s not yet arrived, you may want to delete the app and use the service through the browser player until it does.