free up mac disk space

7 Easy Ways to Free Up Mac Disk Space – Part 1

Your Macs Disk Space is a precious commodity. While the latest, cheapest Apple models still come with a sizeable 500Gb of storage capacity, it is surprisingly easy to fill up. Especially if you like to keep photos, music and movies on your machine. A typical 1 hour TV show downloaded from your iTunes account consumes approximately 1GB of space. So if you were to download all five seasons of Glee (I know you have, don’t lie!) a whopping 108GB of your Macs hard drive space will have hogged by the embarrassingly addictive sing-a-long series.

Did you know – The mount of Disk Space you have free can effect the speed of your computer. One of the reasons your brand new shiny Apple Mac is so darn fast in the first few months, is because your disk space has plenty of room and does’t put any pressure on your RAM. Thus allowing you to use multiple applications and programs simultaneously.

As you fill up your disk space more and more, you will start to notice a dip in your Macs speed and performance. Eventually this dip can turn from apps just running slowly, to ignoring your commands altogether and even freezing.

So… If you are experiencing Mac running slow issues, a simple spring clean may be all your machine requires.

Before we point the finger, we need to double check that it is your limited Disk Space that is causing your Mac to run slowly. Inside your ‘About This Mac’ is a great colourful bar chart that reveal exactly how much Disk Space your Mac computer has, how much is in use, what type of files are consuming it and finally, how much disk space you have remaining.


Check How Much Disk Space I Have Left…

To pull up your personal Mac storage chart, follow these brief instructions…

1.) Click open Apple Menu in you toolbar.
2.) Select the first option ‘About This Mac’.
3.) Click the ‘More Info…’ button at the bottom of the pop up window.
4.) At the top of the new window are four tab. Select ‘Storage’.

mac disk space
Even if only half of your storage disk space is consumed, the speed of your Mac can be effected.



How to Free Up Mac Disk Space

Here are our top tips to freeing your some Mac Disk Space and boost your speed!


1.) Empty The Trash (Properly)

This may sound a little silly, but it is easy to forget to take the trash out properly, heck i’ve gone months without emptying the Trash Can (my virtual Apple Trash that is, not my household bin, that would be gross!) I have freed up literally tens of gigabytes at a time when I have properly deleted the trash files.

how to free up mac disk space

Dumping the unwanted files in your Mac docks waste bin, does not deleted them off your computer, you have to ‘Empty’ it as well. Check out our tutorial  ‘Mac Trash – How to Delete Files on Mac’ to find out the best and most effective ways to empty your Trash Can.


Did you know – You don’t just have one Trash can either, many apps also come with their private ones, such as Mac Mail. These also need to be emptied. You can either do this manually by opening each app, or by using an all-in-one tool such as CleanMyMac 2 ‘Trash Cleanup’.

How to Clean Up Mac OS X Trash with CleanMyMac 2


2.) Uninstall Useless Applications

Applications are notorious for eating up precious GBs of space. So if you have any you no longer want, then give them the boot and deleted them off your Mac for good.

Little apps such as a calculator or a Quick Time player are pretty simple to remove. However, despite what many people advise, dragging apps into the Trash Can and emptying it, is not a very thorough way of removing an app. This method will leave behind pesky trace files, which can cause complications in the future, especially if you wish to reinstall the removed app once again.

free up mac disk space

The best way if find is to use Launchpad…
1.) Click open your Launchpad icon from your Mac Dock.
2.) Your screen should now fill up with all of your installed applications. Browse through until you spot the one you wish to uninstall.
3.) Next hold down your ‘Option’ key from your keyboard. The icons will start to wobble.
4.) If your app can be easily uninstalled, an x will appear next to the app. Click the x and ‘PUFF’ your app should be removed.

This launchpad method is better than using your Trash Can to uninstall, but certain apps may still leave behind a few preferences files. This can be manually found and deleted by searching for them in / Library / Preferences folder.

If you would rather not have to guess and search around for trace files, or have a larger application such as Adobe Photoshop you wish to uninstall, then you can enlist the help of a professional Mac Cleaner, such as Mackeeper or CleanMyMac 2.


3.) Find and Remove Bulky Files

Large bulky files are more effective and satisfying to remove then little txt files. Txt files are often only a few KB and therefore may require you to delete hundreds of files before you are close to freeing up GBs of space.

If you can, try and remove large unwanted files first, as it will save you a lot of agro and time when trying to free up Mac Disk space and boost performance speed.

A Mac cleaner will display the size of all your files for you automatically, but if you don’t have this luxury, we can always use Finder to get the info…

mac disk space

1.) Open up a New Finder Window.
2.) Once inside your new Finder window, use the search files to type in *. This funky little symbol will just ensure that all of your stored files will be listed.
3.) At the top of the window are a selection of drop down menus. Select the second box from the left, it looks like a six squares and an arrow.
4.) A drop down menu will appear. Scroll through and select ‘Size’
5.) Your files will instantly be categorised by their size. Now you can flick through and delete any of the heaviest unwanted files first, freeing up maximum Mac Disk space.

10 Easy Ways to Free Up Mac Disk Space – Part 2



Author at
Hi I'm Sophie, Chief Author at I'm a self proclaimed Mac Nerd and try and make it my job to know the latest tips and tricks for my readers. So whether you are a budding Mac geek, or a full blown enthusiast, I hope my guides can get you through smoothly 🙂

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Hi I'm Sophie, Chief Author at I'm a self proclaimed Mac Nerd and try and make it my job to know the latest tips and tricks for my readers. So whether you are a budding Mac geek, or a full blown enthusiast, I hope my guides can get you through smoothly :)