How to Use “Optimized Storage” in macOS Sierra to Manage Files Perfectly on Your Mac

Don't want your Mac to be completely cluttered for space? Check out this tutorial to manage files properly on your Mac running macOS Sierra by with Optimized Storage.

Whether you are using iPhone or Mac, managing files properly is very important. There are two major advantages of perfect file management on iDevices It won’t let your device be cluttered. It will prevent the iCloud storage from going overboard.

Fortunately, macOS Sierra has tried to solve the file management issue with the introduction of “Optimized Storage” feature. Once enabled, it automatically removes the old or unused files from your Mac and stores them to iCloud. You can download those items from the cloud whenever you want.

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How to Use Optimized Storage in macOS SierraWant to free up storage as well as manage files properly on your Mac powered by macOS Sierra? Let me walk you through the process!

How to Use Optimized Storage in macOS Sierra on Mac

Step #1. Click on the Apple icon at the top-left corner of the screen.

Step #2. Now, choose About this Mac in the drop-down menu.

Click on About This Mac in macOS Sierra

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Step #3. In the System Storage window, you need to click on Storage tab → Click on Manage.

Click on Storage Then Manage in macOS Sierra

Now, you should see the four Optimized Storage options on the right side of the window.

  1. Store in iCloud
  2. Optimize Storage
  3. Empty Trash Automatically
  4. Reduce Clutter

Optimise Storage Options in macOS SierraLet’s take a closer look at each.

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#1. Store in iCloud

It will affect your iCloud Storage limit. But, if you have already enabled Desktop and Documents Syncing as well as iCloud Photo Library, it won’t affect your iCloud storage limit.

Step #1. Click on “Store in iCloud” tab.

Click Store in iCloud in macOS Sierra

Step #2. Then, check the box for Store files from Desktop and Documents in iCloud Drive. It will store the files which are on your desktop and in the Documents folder.

Step #3. Check the box for Store photos and videos in iCloud Photo Library. It will store your entire original photos and videos in iCloud.

Step #4. Click on Store in iCloud again to allow the iCloud syncing.

Store Mac Data in iCloud

#2. Optimize Storage

Optimize Storage lets you store the media (like movies as well as TV shows you have watched on iTunes) which is not in the cloud. You have the option to re-download the media if you wished to watch it later. Besides, it allows you to store your email attachments as well.

Step #1. Click on Optimize.

Click on Optimise in Storage in macOS Sierra

Step #2. You need to click Optimize again to allow it to remove the iTunes movies as well as TV shows you have already watched.

Optimise Storage on Mac in macOS Sierra

#3. Empty Trash Automatically

It will automatically erase the files left in the trash for over 30 days.

Step #1. Click on Turn On which is in the Empty Trash Automatically section.

Turn On Empty Trash Automatically in macOS Sierra

Step #2. You have to click on Turn On again in order to confirm.

Earse Trash Automatically on Mac Running macOS Sierra

#4. Reduce Clutter

“Reduce Clutter” allows you to clean up files manually on your Mac. It makes easy to identify old or large items which you might not need any more.

Step #1. Click on the Review Files button in the Reduce Clutter section.

Click on Review Files in Reduce Clutter on Mac

Step #2. Now, select the file categories in the sidebar. As for instance, you can choose Documents, GarageBand, Applications, iOS Files, iTunes, or Trash. Check out the storage occupied by any file in the list. If you no longer want any item, remove it.

Remove Unneccessary Files from Mac

That’s it!

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Jignesh Padhiyar
Jignesh Padhiyar is the founder of who has a keen eye for news, rumors and all the unusual stuff that happens around iPhone and iPad.


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