Arranging a Cleanup for Your Mac: Guide for Dummies

Appreciators of Apple tech products know that free space runs out not only on iPhone or iPad but also on MacBook and iMac, especially if your computer or laptop has a 128GB SSD “underneath the hood.” Many Mac owners immediately resort to external cleanup utilities for help, but first of all, you often have to pay for them. Moreover, sometimes developers could be a bit cunning, forcing you to purchase a new version of the program every time after a major macOS update. And secondly, there are ways to clean your Mac with standard operating system tools, which are available even in macOS High Sierra.

Arranging a Cleanup for Your Mac: Guide for Dummies

Of course, Mac products should be regularly cleaned not only from unnecessary files and duplicates but from viruses and malware as well. Unfortunately, attacks on MacBooks and iMacs have become more frequent in recent years, so there is hardly any Apple computer/laptop today that hasn’t experienced cyber-threats at least once during its operation. Luckily, you may learn from Mac malware specialists how to get rid of adware or find a comprehensive instruction online.

How to Clean Up Space on Your Mac

Whenever you want to arrange a cleanup for your Mac, start with opening the cleaning menu. To access it, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the Apple menu, and then open the “About this Mac” section.
  2. Go to the “Storage” tab and press the “Manage” button.

You will find yourself in the “Storage Management” section. Yet, if earlier its functionality was minimal, then macOS High Sierra has brought the opportunity to delete individual partitions – from backups and iTunes files to large documents and emails. And all this in one place! Before you proceed to free up some space, the system will offer you the necessary recommendations for keeping the drive clean. For instance, it may enable automatic trash emptying or optimize storage.

In the “Reduce Clutter” menu, you can quickly see the largest files, clean the “Downloads” folder, and so on. Carefully review them, as it is more than likely that there will be files that are no longer relevant and only steal precious space. Delete these files or copy them to an external media.

Another vital point in the process of cleanup of your macOS-powered device is cleaning the “Downloads” folder. Don’t be surprised! Most likely, you haven’t opened it for a long time. Over time, as a rule, you forget about last year’s files and folders, and they remain a load for the hard disk or SSD.

What everyone forgets about are old device backups in iTunes. Sometimes, these copies weigh at least a few tens of gigabytes. In the previous macOS versions, you had to launch iTunes, select the “Settings” and then “Devices” tabs, and then delete backups. But in the latest versions of the Apple’s operating system, this option is also available in the “Storage Management” menu.

As you can see, the new application for managing the drive is almost as good as its third-party counterparts, while it also implements cleanup at the system level without the need to give any programs access to the disk.

Cleaning Up Mac Equipped with Older macOS Version

When you have a MacBook or iMac running on an older macOS version, you can use forced cleaning of the “Other” section. Here are just some examples of data that can be classified in this way by the system:

  • Documents and various file types.
  • Archives and disk images.
  • Various types of personal user data.
  • Temporary files, audio recordings, and so on.
  • User libraries (Application Support, iCloud files, etc.).
  • The system cache (including Safari).
  • Files that Spotlight cannot recognize – for example, a VM hard drive.

At this stage, we seem to have figured out what we are dealing with. Now, how do you get rid of such data and files? Open the Finder, hold down CMD+Shift+g, and then visit the folders listed below. Remove anything from them that you think does not belong on your Mac.

  • ~/Downloads
  • ~/Library/Caches
  • ~/Documents

In other cases, it doesn’t make much sense to use apps from other developers to clean up your Mac. You can delete everything you want by yourself, even if it takes several minutes instead of a few seconds. Plus, you may also save yourself some money!

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