How to free up storage space on your Mac using Optimized Storage

Apple MacBook is one of the most desired laptops on the market. Apple has been adding new features and skills to its MacBook lineup in order to take on Windows-based devices. What we get is a MacBook computer that offers smooth and fast performance.

In reality, Apple MacBook has not seen a major design overhaul for years. However, Apple is still improving its internal hardware and creating new skills. If you have been using your MacBook long enough to accumulate a ton of apps, photos, videos, and files, then it’s time to clean up the mess.

A MacBook with low storage space may lead to a slowdown in performance. Therefore, it’s a good idea to reclaim some lost storage space on your Mac. Thankfully, Apple is making the process much easier thanks to its built-in tools. However, the process may be unknown to many users out there.

In this guide, we are going to show you how to free up storage space on your Mac. Before we begin, make sure you now have the latest software update of macOS installed on your device.

In reality, macOS Sierra includes a built-in tool called Optimized Storage. As the name implies, the feature allows you to remove files you no longer need on your Mac. Besides, the tool also helps move your files to the cloud to optimize your Mac’s storage.

If you are running low on storage, then you will get alerts asking you to free up your Mac. To access this feature, click on the Apple logo on the top left corner of your Mac, then select About this Mac from the drop-down menu and select the Storage tab. Once you are in, you should see how much storage space you have left on your machine. Now, hit the Manage button and you will be presented with 4 options, including Optimize Storage, Reduce Clutter, Empty Trash Automatically, and Store in iCloud.

In the section below, we will help you better understand the Optimized Storage tool and its four options. Here we go.

  1. Optimize Storage

Optimized Storage is a great tool that comes pre-loaded on every Mac running macOS Sierra or newer. It offers multiple options that help you get back some storage space you have lost to photos, videos, and apps.

If you select the Optimize Storage option, then it will automatically remove all the TV shows or files you have watched on your Mac. Besides, it also gets rid of your email attachments. All you need to do is to hit the Optimize option and wait for the process to finish.

  1. Empty Trash Automatically

With the Empty Trash Automatically option, you can delete all the files that have been in the Trash for 30 days. To do this, you simply need to click on Turn on and then confirm your action. From now on, your Mac will automatically empty the Trash.

Note that files that have been erased from the Trash will be gone for good. You have 30 days to decide which content should be removed from your Mac.

  1. Reduce Clutter

The Reduce Clutter option helps you remove your old documents from your Mac. All you need to do is to click Review Files and you should see a list of your large documents, downloads, and a File Browser. To quickly remove a file, you simply hit the X button.

  1. Store in iCloud

Apple has its own storage service called iCloud that allows you to store almost everything in the cloud. By default, you will get 5GB of storage space for free. And, you can also upgrade your storage plan for only $9.99 a month. To store your content in the cloud, you simply need to click on Store on iCloud and then enter your password in iCloud.

Alternatively, you can move your Photos Library to an external drive. To do this, quit Photos on your Mac, and then copy your Photos Library to your external drive. Once done, press and hold the Option/Key key while triggering the Photos app. When you are in, select Photos, then hit Preferences and select Use as System Photo Library.

Other solutions

You can free up some space on your Mac by removing files from your Downloads folder. You can also find out which apps are taking up the most space on your Mac. To do this, open the Finder window, then open your Home folder. After that, open a new Finder window, select Other and you should see File Size.

Also read: How to switch from Android to Apple iPhone

Got any questions? Let us know in the comments below.

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