How ToTech

Clearing “Other” Storage on Mac [Guide]

Managing storage space on a Mac can be challenging, particularly if you have one of the models with a smaller storage capacity. Although Apple provides a dedicated macOS application to provide you with a thorough analysis of how much space your system uses, one of the most perplexing features of it all is the excessively broad naming of the Other category. It can often be difficult to identify the files that are truly using up all the available space on your system, let alone figure out how to delete them.

Mac System Information storage breakdown

Storage breakdown for Mac System Information
Here is a guide to help you understand what makes up the Other storage category, where the Other files are located, and how to remove them from your Mac if you are running low on storage and notice that the Other category is taking up a sizable space of your storage space.

What is Other storage on Mac?

The System Information tool in macOS has a category called “Other.” It stands for all the files on your computer that don’t fit into any of the typical storage category labels (Apps, Documents, iCloud Drive, etc.), but nonetheless take up a sizable amount of space.

You may be wondering just what these file kinds are. Any Mac file types that fit into one of the cryptic categories, such as disc images and archives, app extensions and plugins, system and temporary files, user and system caches, are included in the Other storage category.

Go to System Information to locate these files.

  • Select About this Mac from the Apple menu by clicking on it.
  • Activate the Storage tab by clicking in the System Information window. Now that the storage on your system has been identified, macOS will provide you a summary of the space that has been used.
  • To obtain a thorough breakdown of the occupied space, click on Manage.

Mac System Information storage categorization

  • Storage classification for Mac System Information

However, because you can only see the total amount of space taken up by the Other category and don’t really have a way to see the precise breakdown of files using this space, this method of viewing storage breakdown is only somewhat useful.

How to Find Files in the Other category on Mac?

Usually, there are two ways to find files in the Other category: by browsing through the various directories that make up the Other category, or by utilising a third-party disc analyzer or cleanup tool.

1. Finding Other Files Manually

The Library folder on your Mac is where most of the files that occupy the Other storage are located. Here is a direct path to this folder for speedy access:

  • Launch Finder.
  • Go to Folder can be selected by clicking Go in the menu bar. Alternately, you can get to this by using the Finder window shortcut shift + command + G.
  • Type /Library into the text box.
  • Select Go.

Mac Library folder

Finder will now launch to the Library folder on Mac. A list of different folders can be found here. The majority of these folders are part of the Other storage group. However, a sizable portion of this category can be found in the Caches and Application Support directories.

2. Finding Other Files using a Third-Party Tool

For macOS, there are several different paid and free disc analyzer tools that let you examine your storage to identify the items that fall under the Other category. OmniDiskSweeper, DiskInventoryX, CleanMyMac X, and MacClearner Pro are a few of these tools.

How to Delete Other Storage on Mac

It is time to delete the files that make up the Other storage on your Mac now that you have extensively identified them. Cleaning up can be accomplished in one of two methods, just like the identification procedure. Use a third-party Mac cleaning application to take care of it for you, or go to each folder on your system that contributes to the Other storage and selectively delete the items from there.

1. Deleting Other Storage Manually

As we’ve already mentioned, the Library folder contains a sizable portion of the Other category files. You only need to go to that folder (and its child directories, Cache and Application Support) and delete the pointless and redundant files to take care of the issue yourself. [Refer to the instructions in the last section on how to access the Library folder.] These are the procedures for manually cleaning other storage.

  • Go to the Caches folder in the Library folder. Remove the cache files for any apps that you no longer use or have removed from your Mac from this location. [Note: Since clearing the cache would reset such apps, it is advisable to be aware of the data you intend to delete beforehand. To be on the safe side, you should also perform a full backup of your Mac before carrying out such procedures.]
  • It is time to check for the same files in the /Library/Caches folder after you have deleted the temporary files from /Library/Caches and /Library/Application Support. It often doesn’t have much cache. There are, however, times when it may become overpopulated.
    system cleanup using CleanMyMac X

CleanMyMac X system cleanup

  • The Backup and Downloads folders on your Mac are the next places you can look for more Other files. Go to the Downloads folder under Favorites in Finder’s sidebar. Pick all of the disc images (.dmg) here, then remove them: This step should free up a lot of space for you if you frequently install apps but never care to remove their installation images.
  • Use the shortcut command + shift + G to launch Finder and delete outdated or superfluous backup copies. To access the Backup folder, enter the following path into the Go to Folder window: /Library/Application Support/MobileSync/Backup and press Go. You can find all of your backups here. Choose the unnecessary ones and eliminate them.

2. Clearing Other Storage Using Third-Party Utility

You can utilise a third-party cleaning tool to handle the process if the manual way sounds tiresome to you and you don’t want to risk messing with your system. On the Mac, you may find many of these utilities. However, we advise utilising CleanMyMac X or MacCleaner Pro, two widely used and reliable utilities.

CleanMyMac X system cleanup

system cleanup using CleanMyMac X
These third-party programmes are rather simple to use. You must first run a scan to find every temporary item (cached files and logs) and unnecessary file that makes up your Mac’s Other storage. After the scan is finished, you are given the option to choose which file types you want to take out of the list of things. That’s it; the storage will now be cleaned up and your selection will be removed by the cleaning tool. You can also use these programs to optimise storage on your Mac if necessary.

Keeping the Other Storage on Mac Clean

Maintaining your Mac’s storage space by preventing the buildup of rubbish or pointless files, such as those found in the Other storage category, keeps your device in excellent health and ensures that it operates at its peak level. Keep an eye on your system storage if you have a Mac with a lower setup and purge the junk occasionally. In this manner, you avoid having to give in to storage problems or performance throttling problems.

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