How to Clear Up “Other” Storage on Your Mac

In this post, I give a quick tutorial on how to figure out what the large amount of “other” storage that you see on your Mac computer.  I also share a cool tool that you can use to do it quickly and easily so that you can free up some storage space.

A great app for discovering where your Other storage is being used is called Daisy Disk.  It is available in the Mac App Store

Clear Up “Other” Storage Without The App

  1.  Delete old iPhone/iPad/iPod backups. One backup can be several gigabytes in size.

To do this, open the iTunes app go to Preferences and then select Devices.  Any backups will show here, you can delete those you do not need

Click to enlarge
Click to enlarge

2.  If you have Mac OS X 10.10 (Yosemite) or later, delete your old iPhoto Library file.  This file is no longer needed as the library data has been imported to your Photos Library.

To do to this, go to your Home directory (open Finder and hit Command + H), then open your Pictures folder.  You may see an iPhoto Library file and a Photos Library file; you do not need both.  iPhoto is obsolete, you can delete that file.


3. Clear Cache Files

The cache is full of temporary files from your installed apps and internet browsing that can begin to use a significant amount of storage over time. These files do not clean themselves up so you will need to go in and manually do it.   Here’s how to clean them up:

  1. Open a Finder window and select “Go to Folder” in the Go menu.
  2. Type in ~/Library/Caches and hit enter to proceed to this folder.
  3. Optional step: You can highlight and copy everything to a different folder just in case something goes wrong.
  4. Go into each of the folders and clean out everything.
    Note: We recommend that you remove the insides of these folders, but not the folders themselves.

Now, repeat the same steps above, but substitute…
~/Library/Caches  with…   /Library/Caches