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What you see below is two directories. The first, on the left, is the the original directory I was zipping up with 7-zip. It is reported as 4.26GB. On the right, we have how large the zip file came out to be after zipping it.

enter image description here

Why is there such a disparity between the two? There's a big difference between 4.26 GB and 91 GB ...

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One explanation: You don't have list access to all files/folders, so you can't count their size... –  billc.cn Oct 30 '11 at 13:36
    
@billc.cn That sounds like another possibility...thank you. –  leeand00 Oct 30 '11 at 17:29
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1 Answer

up vote 4 down vote accepted

You probably got the picture on the left with lower privileges (non-Admin), while archived with Admin privileges.

Other, less likely explanations include:

  • Users were changed between the time left and right pictures were taken
  • Left picture was taken before size counting was complete
  • Users may have an item linked/bound to some external storage location (some directory outside the Users, or maybe even WebDAV location), which was not available when the left picture was taken.
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Users were changed between the time left and the right pictures were taken, it isn't that because it's an old windows installation backup from when I re-installed Windows. Well I'm sure it wasn't taken before the size counting was complete, because I asked this question 3 hours ago, and the same dialog is still opened and it still reads 4.25 GB. So we can rule that one out. Now that last one I could believe. Now might there be some way to use robocopy to disconnect the linked/bound items? –  leeand00 Oct 30 '11 at 17:26
    
This appears to hold some promise: answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/forum/windows_7-files/… –  leeand00 Oct 30 '11 at 17:35
    
Yup that did the trick. Used robocopy to copy the files without the links. –  leeand00 Oct 30 '11 at 20:30
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