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How to Clear Space on Mac – the RIGHT Way

Sometimes, out of mere curiosity (or because you noticed that ALL of your disk space happen to disappear in some strange way) you wonder:

Where the heck did all my storage space go?

Turns out, it’s not just your favourite ‘Breaking Bad’ or ‘Friends’ TV episodes. And it’s not the trash bin that you always forget to empty. (But you’d better not to!)

All things considered, there are many more huge files whose existence you’ve never even suspected.

We provided short descriptions for majority of them. And below you’ll also find quick helping tips to sweep them all out of your iron friend.

Let’s get right into it:

Temporary files

On Mac OS temporary files are usually cleared out on their own (unlike Windows). But, guessing, not all of them get removed.

After taking a closer look at my MacBook Air storage space, it turned out that .tmp files take up whooping 36,7 GB. Well, honestly, I’m not a techie person, and maybe not a very profound Mac user, but holy cow! 36, 7 GB?!

While you can under no circumstances remove the files manually, the best you can do is to reboot your computer. Yeah, it’s that simple. If this didn’t work try rebooting it in the safe mode – that is holding ‘Shift’ button, when it’s starting.

Let us know if it worked out in the comments section.

Cache Files

These are the files stored on your computer aimed to provide better user experience.
 Because of cache files, you can reach the info, you’ve already accessed before, much faster.

But very frequently they take just too much of your HDD, so you need to clear cache out from time to time.

To remove cache files on your Mac, do the following:

–  open Finder

– select ‘Go’ > ‘Go to Folder’

– type in ‘~/Library/Caches’

– delete those files (we suggest delete the insides of the folders rather than folders themselves) – repeat the operation one more time, but type ‘/Library/Caches’ this time (without ‘~’ sign)

Then head to your trash bin and make sure you cleaned it. After this restart your Mac.

Language Files

If Application is available in several languages, it comes with additional files for every language it supports.

You don’t speak Thai, do you? Either way – you still got the file.

A simple free app like Monolingual can easily remove those files. But think twice before doing this – unless you update your OS, you won’t get them back.

Mail Attachments

Turns out, that if you’re using Apple’s Mail app – all the message archives and mail attachments are stored on your computer. And they can take up floppily jillion of space. Of course, it depends on how much mail you get, but the chance is – they do eat a lot of your storage.

So perhaps, there is no need to keep ‘em all on your machine. Go to the Mail.app and there you can easily get rid of all the unnecessary emails.

iTunes backups

Without you even knowing about it, iTunes keeps a lot of unnecessary info. For instance, if you have a habit of downloading iOS apps through iTunes, they are still kept there.

In addition – All the backups of your iOS devices are also stored in iTunes. Sometimes they are completely useless. For example, if you upgraded to a newer device, you probably don’t need a backup for the older one.

That’s exactly what I’ve got on my working computer:

So to check on your devices’ backups, go to iTunes menu > Preferences. Tap on ‘Devices’ section there.

What’s good about Apple operational systems – they are clever. That is iOS or Mac OS are thought to remove cached files on its own.

So to check on your devices’ backups, go to iTunes menu > Preferences. Tap on ‘Devices’ section there.

How to Analyze Your Disk Space

Anyways – these are just the part of all unnecessary files your Mac is piled up with. To analyze what is eating up your space exactly, we’d also suggest using DaisyDisk app.

DaisyDisk is a pretty cool app.

I’ll even let you in on a secret – we share the same office with DaisyDisk’s creator Oleg Krupnov.

Here’s the proof:

Daisy Disk will quickly let you know what files are being too big and bulky. Once you scan your computer (it takes just a couple of secs), it’ll show you your computer storage in a colourful diagram, divided into bright blocks. Move the cursor to any of them – and the app will tell you the file’s name and how much storage it takes.

If you click on it – you’ll get another diagram composed of bright blocks just as well. This is how you can get even deeper in the storage space hierarchy.

Warning: Be aware – this will certainly be a revelation moment: you’ll never believe what’s taking up your storage space.

Remember you downloaded that useless app a year ago? No? Well, DaisyDisk will quickly refresh your memory.

The thing I like the most about it – you also can collect all the unneeded materials and delete them altogether inside of the application.

And you know what – removing the files in such a nice flowery way is a lot of fun.

Do you already smell this daisy sent going from your computer?

In the end – What files take the most storage on your Mac? Tell us in the comments section!

 

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