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If you’re getting error messages about a full disk, or having trouble downloading and installing new apps, it might be time to clear some space on your Mac.
Your storage drive has a finite amount of space on it. Some of that space is taken up by internal processes, some by the operating system, and the rest is reserved for programs, music, photos, files, movies, and anything else you’ve saved. Storage space is usually measured in gigabytes (GB).
To see how much space you have on your storage drive, follow these instructions:
2. Select About this Mac, then Storage
The total size of the disk will be listed, along with how much free space remains on the disk. 20% free space is usually recommended to give the system plenty of room to exchange files with the memory module.
There are several steps to freeing up space on your storage disk.
Check your desktop and remove the shortcuts for any apps and files that you no longer use. Go to Software Update to permanently remove any apps from your storage disk.
To use Software Update, click the apple icon, then select App Store, where you can update or uninstall programs.
Check the Downloads folder. Make sure things you want are saved to the appropriate place on the storage disk, then delete the copy in the Downloads folder.
Go through your storage disk to delete files, programs, games, and music you no longer want. You can also move items you want to keep but rarely use to the cloud or to an external storage drive.
Delete any downloaded movies or TV shows that you’ve already watched. If you want to watch them again, they’re waiting for you on iTunes®.
Use the instructions below to remove duplicates of photos, documents, and music.
If you have OS X® Sierra on your Mac, you can configure items to automatically move some items to iCloud. Select the Apple menu, then About this Mac, select Manage, then Storage Tools. Then select Store in iCloud. This option moves items off your storage drive and into your Apple account in the cloud.
There are other options in this area that will allow you to automatically clear space on your storage disk:
If you’ve done all of these things and still don’t have enough room, consider upgrading your storage disk to a larger solid state drive. Browse our range of solid state drives.
Be sure to clear your browser’s cache files. If you’re using Safari, use this procedure:
Items you put in the trash stay there, taking up space until you empty the trash. Right-click on the trash icon and select Empty Trash. Some applications, such as iPhoto®, iMovie®, and Mail have their own trash cans, be sure to empty those as well by going into each program and selecting Empty Trash.
When you’ve completed all the tasks, restart or turn off your computer to clear the memory.
You’ve just freed up space on your Mac!
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