If you are down to 8.5 out of 10 gigs, you need to worry about getting your data off that drive while you can. Room is needed to remove the data (reading and writing room). If there is not enough room to perform the needed reads and writes, you then have to start ''throwing stuff overboard''....

However you get your data off the drive, doesn't matter. The important thing is to get it off intact. You can put it back on a hard drive later.