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John T. F.
John T. F., Mac Druid
Category: Mac
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Experience:  20+ years in the computer/Mac industry
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Why does my startup disk keep getting full even after I have

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Why does my startup disk keep getting full even after I have deleted tons of photos, videos, applications and files. It said I had almost 1GB of space and then all of that space disappeared for no reason and my Outlook for Mac crashed. Even after rebuilding the identity for Outlook it won't open because it says I only have like 5MB of space left. What's going on?
Hello! My name isXXXXX will work diligently to provide accurate advice and information.

First off, you generally shouldn't delete apps that shipped with the system, they often have files spread across the drive and removing them from Applications doesn't free much space anyway.

That said, can you tell me what version of OS X you are currently running?

Click the Apple Logo in the menubar at the top of the screen

Select "About This Mac"

In the window that opens, look for the "Version" information. Please let me know what it says.



Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Version 10.6.8

2.26 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo

2GB 1067 MHz DDR3

I deleted Garageband, iWeb and iCal because it said the startup disk was full even after I deleted tons of photos, videos and other files. I don't know what it is doing. Could my Outlook be causing the problem if it has too many saved emails?

Generally emails really don't cause a lot of problems where space is concerned.

This may be a really stupid question but to leave no stone unturned I must ask; When you deleted these items, you did empty the trash afterwards, correct?

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

yeah, iCal wouldn't delete at first because it said there was an "iCaltileplugin" in use. I found it located inside the Dashboard so I tried to deactivate it and then delete it. Not sure if it worked or not. I saved iWeb to my backup hard drive just incase I needed it but I trashed iCal because have Outlook for Mac and I trashed Garageband because I don't make music.



In the Finder, click the Go menu in the menu bar and choose "Computer"

Control-Click or Right-Click on "Macintosh HD" and choose Get Info

What does it list for:

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Right now I am copying ALL my Documents, Pictures and Music to my backup drive to see what happens. It say 159.7GB capacity and 159.7GB used...

Okay, you next step should be to try and see which folder might be using the most space. It's best to start with your Home folder.

In the Finder, click the Go menu in the menu bar and choose "Home"

Control-Click or Right-Click on each folder and choose Get Info.

Then, look at the size of each.

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Music is gone...freed up 400.3 MB. When the photos and documents are complete it says that I will free up 94 GB...




Ok, it sounds like the bulk of your space is in either Photos or Documents.

Unless you have an unusually large amount of photos then it's rare for either to take up so much space. Do you perhaps run any sort of virtual machine software such as VMWare or Parallels Desktop?

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

No virtual machine software, just Outlook for Mac and Microsoft Office for Mac. Pictures are done, now I have 4.87 GB available. Still waiting for documents to finish. It says it will take 3hrs. Only 11 GB out of 90 GB are complete.


Do you see anything inside the Documents folder that may be the main contributor to this size?

Open the Documents folder

In the menu bar click View > As List

In the menu bar click View > Show View Options then select "Calculate All Sizes".

You should then be able to isolate the largest items from the rest of your documents.

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