You have too many files and programs on your Mac and after so many months of work the message appeared. Is your boot disk almost full? Surely you have to do some cleaning on the hard disk but it is not necessary to perform a format. In this article, you will find useful tips on how to free up disk space and free yourself from that annoying window!

Macs are computers that perform well even after several years from the purchase, in fact, Apple focuses on optimizing the operating system so that it can work properly and smoothly even on older models. Obviously, there must be the basic resources for the system to work properly and among these resources surely there must be free space on the boot disk: the main hard disk of the Mac in which the operating system resides.

Over the course of months or years of work is inevitable does not have the hard drive full of photos, videos, documents and many other files and then if we have the habit of making an early periodic backup of OS X could show the message Your boot disk is almost full (your startup disk is almost full) as has already happened to me and hundreds of other readers.

Your boot disk is almost full: what to do?

Except in very rare cases where there is the activity of a malicious process (for example of a virus or an application that does not work properly) very often this annoying window appears when only a few GB or MB are left in the boot disk and you will notice without any doubt that the Mac is slow and does not respond correctly to your commands. So you just have to proceed with the deletion of unnecessary files, the storage of others in external media and the uninstallation of software that has not been used for some time.

Freeing up space on the Mac startup disk

Following the useful tips in the next paragraphs of this article, you will be able to solve the problem in ten minutes and say goodbye to the window that tells you that your boot disk is almost full.

What occupies space?

Before proceeding with the actual cleaning of the computer is good to know what type of file is flocking the hard disk of the Mac. Then click on the Apple menu  that appears at the top left of the Finder and choose About this Mac.

At this point select the Archive tab and you will see a bar that shows if they are photos, videos, backup or other data to fill the startup disk; so by taking a look at this element you will immediately realize where you will have to act to solve the problem quickly.

Then you can take advantage of the Finder search bar to find and list files by type and then decide which ones to delete, backup or keep on disk.

Delete or archive folders that are too large

After seeing what file types are occupying the hard disk, open a new Finder window and do an advanced search using the search field that appears at the top right. Then type a space in the search field and then click on the item This Mac that appears below; sort the list by Size to see which items occupy several GB of space.

If these are important files, then you will need to make a backup and proceed to the final elimination from the computer by moving them to the trash.

Uninstall useless applications

Most of the installed Mac apps can be found in the Applications folder that can be easily found from the Finder or OS X dock. Then open this folder and delete programs that you have not used for a while or no longer need them; in many cases to uninstall a program from the Mac just move it to the trash and only in the case of complex applications like Photoshop you will have to resort to an uninstaller able to permanently and correctly delete files from the system.

Empty the trash

Remember to empty the bin periodically as it often happens that the files that you delete from the Finder stay for several months in the Recycle Bin, inevitably occupying tens of GBs. To delete files permanently, right-click on the Trash and choose Empty Trash.

Clear the Download folder

Browsing the net we download a lot of files, programs, e-mail attachments, photographs and videos that help to fill the Mac boot disk causing problems. Then open the Download folder of OS X and check very carefully that there are no large files, maybe useless setups, or videos that do not interest you anymore; if you verify the presence of unimportant data, delete them without hesitation and empty the trash.

Delete iPhone and iPad backups on iTunes

Finally, if you often connect iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch to the Mac through iTunes, surely Apple’s program will automatically backup the contents of your portable device and, if we consider that some iPhone models have 128GB of memory, a full backup it could occupy all this useful space for our daily computer operations.

If you do not know how to delete older iTunes backups, follow these steps:

  • open iTunes
  • click on iTunes in the top bar and choose Preferences
  • click on the Devices tab
  • a list will show you all the backups made with the device name and date
  • select unnecessary backups and press Delete Backup

At the end of each operation, remember to delete the files from the recycle bin and restart the Mac to make the changes effective and recalculate the free space on the hard disk.

If you have followed carefully all the solutions illustrated in this guide, you will surely not see the window that bothers you anymore, Your boot disk is almost full and asks you to free space on your Mac’s hard drive.

If you still have any problem then feel free to leave a comment below. Share this guide on social networks with your friends to help them solve this annoying problem.


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