Running out of disk space on a Macbook is a common issue. And that has become even more apparent once the manufacturers started to replace HHDs with SSDs to improve the overall performance. However, if you are stuck with only a few gigabytes of free space, expecting to have an optimally performing Mac is a stretch.
Thankfully, there are workarounds for this problem. The space cleaning tips in this article should be enough to help you come up with a proper data management strategy and maintain your computer in top shape.
Tip #1 – Remember to Delete Data Permanently
Keep in mind that dragging files in the Trash Bin is not the same as removing them from the computer permanently. For that, you will need to empty the Trash every time or enable the option that deletes files automatically after they have been in the bin for 30 days.
At the same time, you can also use a keyboard shortcut and not bother with the Trash Bin. Hit Option + Command + Delete after selecting files you want to remove from the Mac permanently and confirm the pop-up.
Tip #2 – Get Rid of Useless Apps
Having old applications makes little sense if you are not using them. Even if space requirements for an app are relatively small, you need to consider other aspects, such as the temporary data it creates. Some applications also come with language pack file support that sometimes takes up to one gigabyte of storage.
If nothing else, you can download and reinstall an application if you ever need to use one. But for now, if the goal is to have as much free storage as possible, you would be better off deleting applications that serve no purpose.
Tip #3 – Clear Temporary System Data
Temporary data like backups, caches, and app extensions slow down computers’ speed just by the sheer number of files. Thus, getting rid of them would help not just for the sake of freeing up Macbook’s disk space.
You have two options to get rid of temporary files. The first is to get a cleanup utility tool that does the work for you and deletes unwanted data automatically. The second is doing the work manually yourself, though it is pretty monotonous, and you r isk deleting an important file accidentally.
Tip #4 – Check for Old Email Attachments and Downloads
Do not forget that every email attachment you double-click on gets saved on the Macbook by default. And not everyone is aware of that, nor are they familiar with the default folder for email attachments.
A similar thing applies to downloads. Some download an installer or another type of file and forget about it.
It is important to keep tabs on both downloads and email attachments. To make things easier, why not change the directory for these files to the desktop? This way, you will see the files after saving them on the computer and can delete them after they serve their purpose.
Tip #5 – Confirm That Mac is Malware-Free
Malware and viruses can get out of hand. While some cybersecurity threats target personal user information and slow down the computer’s performance, there are other types of malware as well.
One of these types includes malware that consumes the drive’s space. If you notice that there is less free storage each time you check Mac’s drive, scan the system using reliable antivirus software, and check for potential viruses.
Delete corrupted files if the scan finds any. To prevent the problem from repeating in the future, make sure that there is an antivirus running in the background all the time. It should detect and eliminate potential threats before they manifest and cause problems.
Tip #6 – Consume Media on Streaming Platforms
Keeping large media files on the computer is a thing of the past. You would be better off watching movies and TV shows or listening to music on streaming platforms.
Netflix, Disney+, Hulu, and Spotify are just a few examples of popular streaming services. And even if you end up paying for these services, they are still worth it. Not only will there be more free space on the Macbook’s drive, but you will also have a convenient way to consume your media as it is just a few clicks away.
Tip #7 – Transfer Files to External Storage
External storage is a good solution. At the end of the day, you cannot delete every file on the computer. Some of them are too important. Thus, you can use Dropbox and iCloud. The two are free and offer a few gigabytes in their default plan with an option to upgrade by paying a monthly fee.
External hard drives and memory sticks are also worth a shout. These devices cost money, but you can get them from a second-hand store or another person, as well as wait for the holiday season when stuff goes on sale.