MacBook Air says internal storage full, can't find the files


IsabelleOLS

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Hello!

I have a problem that I had only noticed this week, it's really weird. I have a MacBook Air from 2013, running OS X El Capitan with 120 GB internal storage space.

My Mac has been showing (for the past year I believe) that my disk is whether “almost full” or “full”. At first I somehow only thought I had really little space on the computer, but then I noticed that even though I deleted all of my movies, the Mac still showed I had 38,21 GB of movies on my computer (?!). Of course I checked via spotlight and a search through “all my files” for any potential files with any kind of a “movie” extension that could eat up so much space, but there weren't any! Also when I arrange the files in the folder “all my files” by size, there just isn't enough of any big files to eat up so much space.

I have searched through the internet for some answers and found some people with similar problems, but I can't seem to find a solution.

I'm going crazy, because it is beginning to seriously slow down my work. Please help!



This is a photo of my storage from “about my mac”:

Screen Shot 2017-11-22 at 18.50.17.png


I know that I have 16GB of photos on my Mac and about 18GB of music. But for “other” and “movies” I really don't know where did they get this number?!
 
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honestone

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I also have a mid 2013 13" Mac Book Air, with a 252 gig SSD. I am using the latest version of Sierra, OS 10.12.6. Need to ask some questions, along with some suggestions:

1. Are you making backups to an external device? That is so, so critical! If you (hopefully) are, what software are you using for that?

2. From what you mentioned, you have tried to do some disk cleanup, but maybe more needs to be done. First place to look is inside your downloads folder. There could be some files there that you no longer need.

3. A couple of more suggestions:

A. Download, install, and run the excellent freeware program Onyx, which you can get from here:

https://www.titanium-software.fr/en/onyx.html

Since you are running El Capitan, make sure you download V3.1.9.

B. Download, install, and run the excellent freeware program GrandPerspective, available from here:

http://grandperspectiv.sourceforge.net/

It is actually a nice graphical way of seeing which files are on your machine.

It does seem strange, though, that after you removed all of your movies, it still shows 38.21 GB of space used by "Movies". Maybe something to do with iTunes?
 

IsabelleOLS

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Hey!

I have just found a temporary solution to free up some space. I deleted both of my iPhone backups on the computer and freed up almost 30GB of space, which is amazing (didn't think of that before).

But... it freed up the space mostly in the category ”other” and not the ”movies” category, which is still weird.
This is the new screenshot:
Screen Shot 2017-11-22 at 19.47.02.png


So my next step will be downloading and running GrandPerspective.

About iTunes... I have checked the folders and could find any files with any movie-kind extensions and honestly I never used iTunes for movies ever.

Thank you for your help! I'll let you know what GrandPerspective turns up.
 

IsabelleOLS

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Oh, and I forgot to reply to your questions:

I am not backing up my disc currently.

And about the downloads folder, it shows there is 1,24GB of files there.
 

IsabelleOLS

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Okay, I had run the GrandPerspective. This is what it showed:
Screen Shot 2017-11-22 at 20.26.05.jpg


The green block is the “photos” folder, which is 16GB. So everything else should have been much much smaller.

Also it says on the right it scanned 55,3GB of files, which isn't the same as it says on the About my mac that I have used 90GB of space. I'm the only person using the computer. I must admit I don't really understand all the info in the bar on the right...
 

honestone

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OK, glad you are trying some things. But the lack of a backup is not good.

As for GrandPerspective, hover your mouse over some of the larger "blocks", to see what they are. Maybe candidates for removal? As for "scanning 55 gb of files", I don't believe GrandPerspective looks very closely at OS-related/System-related stuff.

My Downloads folder on both of my Macs is much smaller than 1.24 GB. Did you look inside it and see what is there? I always keep it "lean, mean, and clean".
 
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honestone

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I forgot to mention one other thing that could be taking up a good amount of space. If you use a "local" EMail client (like Apple's Mail program, or (like be) Outlook 2016, for example), when you delete an EMail, it does not get permanently removed "without further action". For Outlook 2016, there are 2 easy ways of having a deleted EMail permanently removed (and I use it just about every time I launch Outlook 2016 and check my EMail). But I do not know how to do it for other EMail software.
 

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