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I have a problem on my month-old iMac running macOS 10.14.6. The amount of available disk space keeps shrinking (in the Get Info window) despite my deleting tons of files.

I have a factory 2TB SSD. When I delete anything, the amount of disk space available doesn't seem to change in the Finder windows. Just today I deleted 100 GB of files. Before the deletion, it said I had 233.7 GB of disk space available. Following the deletion (and emptying of the Trash) it still showed 233.7 GB of space available. I restarted the computer and it showed 233.3 GB available!

I have run Tinkertool System and deleted unncessary log files etc. I ran TechTool Pro, and it found no problems. I have 40 GB of RAM, and it shows that there is no swap file taking up space.

This does not seem like normal behavior. Any advice on where I need to look for a problem? I have a suspicion that I really have scads more storage space than is indicated.
 


I have a problem on my month-old iMac running macOS 10.14.6. The amount of available disk space keeps shrinking (in the Get Info window) despite my deleting tons of files. I have a factory 2TB SSD. When I delete anything, the amount of disk space available doesn't seem to change in the Finder windows. Just today I deleted 100 GB of files. Before the deletion, it said I had 233.7 GB of disk space available. Following the deletion (and emptying of the Trash) it still showed 233.7 GB of space available. I restarted the computer and it showed 233.3 GB available!
I have run Tinkertool System and deleted unnecessary log files etc. I ran TechTool Pro, and it found no problems. I have 40 GB of RAM, and it shows that there is no swap file taking up space.
This does not seem like normal behavior. Any advice on where I need to look for a problem? I have a suspicion that I really have scads more storage space than is indicated.
This is the "new normal" for the Finder when APFS-formatted drives are in the mix. I have heard that perhaps Disk Utility might somewhat more accurately report actual used and free disk space. I personally find it frustrating and confusing to no longer be provided an instant and accurate count of data storage on a drive, thanks to how APFS works (or doesn’t work, depending on the definition).
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
... I have a factory 2TB SSD. When I delete anything, the amount of disk space available doesn't seem to change in the Finder windows. Just today I deleted 100 GB of files. Before the deletion, it said I had 233.7 GB of disk space available. Following the deletion (and emptying of the Trash) it still showed 233.7 GB of space available. I restarted the computer and it showed 233.3 GB available! ...
This does not seem like normal behavior. Any advice on where I need to look for a problem? I have a suspicion that I really have scads more storage space than is indicated.
We've discussed this at some length in the APFS topic, so it's probably worth taking a look through that (and feel free to follow up, if that doesn't answer your questions/confusion - it's certainly a confusing mess in many ways).
 


I have a problem on my month-old iMac running macOS 10.14.6. The amount of available disk space keeps shrinking (in the Get Info window) despite my deleting tons of files.

I have a factory 2TB SSD. When I delete anything, the amount of disk space available doesn't seem to change in the Finder windows. Just today I deleted 100 GB of files. Before the deletion, it said I had 233.7 GB of disk space available. Following the deletion (and emptying of the Trash) it still showed 233.7 GB of space available. I restarted the computer and it showed 233.3 GB available!

I have run Tinkertool System and deleted unncessary log files etc. I ran TechTool Pro, and it found no problems. I have 40 GB of RAM, and it shows that there is no swap file taking up space.

This does not seem like normal behavior. Any advice on where I need to look for a problem? I have a suspicion that I really have scads more storage space than is indicated.
When I see the system telling me my boot drive is getting too full (I use TechTool Pro to monitor its usage levels) it has always been due to snapshots filling the drive. I usually see this right after updating the OS. Carbon Copy Cloner has the ability to monitor and manage snapshots so I can delete older or larger snapshots killing my free space.
 


The amount of available disk space keeps shrinking (in the Get Info window) despite my deleting tons of files.
When I see the system telling me my boot drive is getting too full ... it has always been due to snapshots filling the drive.
I thought part of Apple's disk space schtick starting from OS X 10.9 or so was that Finder-reported free space would include "disposable" things like Trash, snapshots, backup copies and the like. That is, you would always be able to save a new file, even if macOS had to eject something that it had been saving behind the scenes.

I just did this on my Mojave "Macintosh HD", and it reports the same space used as df -g . does, but adds "(14.6 GB Purgeable)." Aren't the snapshots considered purgeable? Apologies if my understanding of the situation is wrong; if so, I'd appreciate an explanation!
 


We've discussed this at some length in the APFS topic, so it's probably worth taking a look through that (and feel free to follow up, if that doesn't answer your questions/confusion - it's certainly a confusing mess in many ways).
I did look through the thread and couldn't really find anything that could help me. I ran TechTool Pro 11 and it found no issues with the partition map or volume structures, although I'm not really sure how significant that is. Disk Utility reports the same available space as the Finder, so no problem there. Now I'm just waiting to run out of storage space…
 



I have a 2018 MacBook Pro running Mojave 10.14.6 that shows a discrepancy with available disk space. Get Info shows (numbers rounded off):
Capacity: 500 GB, Available: 179 GB, Used: 319 GB

However, when I add up the size of all of the folders at the root of the drive (including hidden folders), I get 252 GB, not 319 GB. Does anyone know what the cause might be?
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
I can appreciate this perspective, given my own recent Apple experiences and those of others reported on MacInTouch:
Nibble Stew said:
Apple of 2019 is the Linux of 2000
Last week the laptop I use for macOS development said that there is an XCode update available. I tried to install it but it said that there is not enough free space available to run the installer. So I deleted a bunch of files and tried again. Still the same complaint. Then I deleted some unused VM images. Those would free a few dozen gigabytes, so it should make things work. I even emptied the trash can to make sure nothing lingered around. But even this did not help, I still got the same complaint.

At this point it was time to get serious and launch the terminal. And, true enough, according to df the disk had only 8 gigabytes of free space even though I had just deleted over 40 gigabytes of files from it (using rm, not the GUI, so things really should have been gone). A lot of googling and poking later I discovered that all the deleted files had gone to "reserved space" on the file system. There was no way to access those files or delete them. According to documentation the operating system would delete those files "on demand as more space is needed". This was not very comforting because the system most definitely was not doing that and you'd think that Apple's own software would get this right.

After a ton more googling I managed to find a chat buried somewhere deep in Reddit which listed the magical indentation that purges reserved space. It consisted of running tmutil from the command line and giving it a bunch of command line arguments that did not seem to make sense or have any correlation to the thing that I wanted to do. But it did work and eventually I got XCode updated.

After my blood pressure dropped to healthier levels I got the strangest feeling of déjà vu. This felt exactly like using Linux in the early 2000s. Things break at random for reasons you can't understand and the only way to fix it is to find terminal commands from discussion forums, type them in and hope for the best....
#finder #ftff
 


I wrote an AppleScript app decades ago that prefixes files/folders dropped on it with a date & time stamp. I always create a new version when upgrading macOS.

When I ran the new version in Mojave, I always got the dialog:

"Timestamper" wants access to control "Finder"...

I kept approving it, but it continually asked. I checked in System Preferences > Security & Privacy > Privacy > Automation: it was listed and checked there.

After much web searching, I found a solution. I added the Finder to System Preferences > Security & Privacy > Privacy > Accessibility.

My brain hurts...
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
If you need to find your many gigabytes of hidden iTunes backup files to, you know, maybe recover some of that massive amount of storage space on your Mac for other purposes (macOS Catalina update, maybe?), here's an Apple article with helpful instructions...
Apple Support said:
Locate backups of your iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch

Find iOS backups on your Mac
Find a list of your backups:
  1. Click [tiny magnifying glass icon] in the menu bar.
  2. Type or copy and paste this: ~/Library/Application Support/MobileSync/Backup/
  3. Press Return.
...
Delete iOS backups
  1. Mac: Choose iTunes > Preferences....
  2. Click Devices.
  3. Choose the backup that you want to delete. If you have several devices or backups, hover the mouse pointer over the backup to see more details.
  4. Click Delete Backup, then confirm.
These shell commands for listing iOS backup space, disk space and free space may be useful:
Bash:
du -hcs ~/Library/Application\ Support/MobileSync
du -hcs ~/Library/Application\ Support
du -hcs ~/Library/
df -H ~/
df -H /
 


I have a 2018 MacBook Pro running Mojave 10.14.6 that shows a discrepancy with available disk space. Get Info shows (numbers rounded off):
Capacity: 500 GB, Available: 179 GB, Used: 319 GB
2018 Mac Mini running Catalina 10.15.1 with a 256GB SSD:

Finder reports 219.84 GB available, which I find hard to believe.

Get info shows
Capacity: 250.69 GB​
Available: 219.99 GB (116.34 purgeable)​
Used: 143.07 GB on disk​

OmniDiskSweeper (latest version, Catalina compatible) reports
103.6 GB free, 143.1 GB used, 250.7 GB used​

Now 219.99 - 116.34 = 103.6 GB, so that does add up. But what, exactly, does "available" mean? Is this space APFS can reclaim as needs? I did buy DaisyDisk, and it reports, however:
free + purgeable = 127 GB.​

What to believe?

Sometimes I just want HFS back. :-)
 


Finder reports 219.84 GB available, which I find hard to believe. Get info shows
Capacity: 250.69 GB​
Available: 219.99 GB (116.34 purgeable)​
Used: 143.07 GB on disk​
...But what, exactly, does "available" mean? Is this space APFS can reclaim as needs? I did buy DaisyDisk, and it reports, however:
free + purgeable = 127 GB.​
"Available" should be free space (that 103.6GB reported free by OmniDiskSweeper) plus purgeable space (not free, but data that the system may auto-delete if needed to make more space available).

I'm not sure what DaisyDisk is reporting. My guess is that they are using a different algorithm to determine what is "purgeable", hence the smaller number. This might be the case if it was designed for an earlier version of macOS, where fewer types of files could be purged.

This discrepancy may be particularly large if you have enabled Apple's "optimized storage", where the OS may purge data that can be recovered on-demand from iCloud (e.g. documents backed up to the cloud, iTunes purchases, etc.) It would be surprising if a third-party utility had knowledge of this, since the algorithm would require access to your iCloud storage and purchase history.
 


If you need to find your many gigabytes of hidden iTunes backup files to, you know, maybe recover some of that massive amount of storage space on your Mac for other purposes (macOS Catalina update, maybe?), here's an Apple article with helpful instructions...
That Apple document is helpful... but, gosh, "it's complicated" to understand the distinctions in Apple's mind among "backups" of iPhone data stored on the Mac vs stored in iCloud, especially since, when you do locate the backups, they have inscrutable names of gibberish characters, numbers, letters, etc. And all the warnings about not touching those backups because they will be "ruined" are pretty daunting for mere mortals.
 


I have a 2018 MacBook Pro running Mojave 10.14.6 that shows a discrepancy with available disk space. Get Info shows (numbers rounded off):
Capacity: 500 GB, Available: 179 GB, Used: 319 GB
However, when I add up the size of all of the folders at the root of the drive (including hidden folders), I get 252 GB, not 319 GB. Does anyone know what the cause might be?
Following up on this issue, I found the problem was with local snapshots. Details on how to remove them can be found here:
 


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