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Could Not Initialize Photoshop Because the Scratch Disks Are Full



There have been times when users have reported this issue with Photoshop where the program doesn’t run. Instead, you are left with a message of “Could Not Initialize Photoshop Because the Scratch Disks Are Full”. We here look into this issue and find the solution for it. 

Could Not Initialize Photoshop Because the Scratch Disks Are Full

What is the scratch disk error?

The error arises because Photoshop is known to use the computer’s RAM to function. Whenever the RAM space gets used up, the computer uses virtual memory to run the program. This is where Photoshop specifies the same as a scratch disk in the PC. And whenever space turns low to allocate data, the app doesn’t initialize and instead shows these scratch disk messages. 

How to solve Scratch Disks are Full Issue?

Solution 1: Remove the Temporary Files

  • Click on the start button and type Run. Or you can also press Windows Key + R simultaneously. 
  • Once the Run window opens, type in %temp% and press enter
  • A new tab with temporary files will open. 
  • Select all the items and delete the files. 
  • If any files cannot be deleted, then hit the Skip option once prompted for those files.

Solution 2: Open Photoshop by using Ctrl + Alt keys

  • Double click on your Photoshop app and open it. 
  • Immediately press the buttons Ctrl + Alt when the program is opening.
  • This will prompt a dialog box with ‘Scratch Disk Preferences’ to open up.
  • Open the Scratch Disk Section and see if the scratch disk location has a free size or not. If not, then change the drive. You can also allocate more than one drive for scratch drive options. 

Note: If you do not have any other drives, then you can also partition your drive and make another drive. Once the new drive is created, format it and give it a name. Then select the same as the desired scratch drive location. 

Solution 3: Optimize your Hard drive

Another way to resolve the issue is to optimize your hard drive so that the fragmented space can be recovered. Simply right-click on the same and select the option ‘Defragment the drive’. This will defragment and clear the drive of any such contagious and fragmented files. 


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