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Cleaning out SSD
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Senior User
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Martha's Vineyard
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Mar 27, 2015, 04:50 PM
Hello all,

I've been getting lots of warnings that I've just 17% of space left on my drive. However, after cleaning out pics/songs/vids and programs I'll never use I still have loads of data sitting there taking up space. Is there a way to know what to delete all the extra stuff. I used Omnidisksweeper and it shows I have 4.8 GB marked private, and when I click that I see two names sleepimage and swapfile) each taking 1.1 GB. They are in a folder called vm.

Perhaps the best way is to simply(not so simple) erase and reinstall everything.

Professional Poster
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Nashua NH, USA
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Mar 27, 2015, 05:20 PM
You shouldn't delete those. If the file isn't in /User/* then you probably shouldn't be deleting it.
Grizzled Veteran
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Land of Enchantment
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Apr 2, 2015, 09:16 PM
You can get rid of the swap file. I've done that a few times with no ill effect. Keep the sleep image, though. You may have to log in as root to do that with OmniDiskSweeper.
Spheric Harlot
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Apr 3, 2015, 03:18 AM
Leave them alone and find a different way for housecleaning.

The swap file is your inactive system memory. Deleting that on a running system seems like recipe for disaster - apart from the fact that it'll just be recreated as needed.

The sleep image is the file where the entire contents of your RAM are stored when the machine sleeps, in case the battery dies and the machine's RAM loses power during sleep. Unless you switch off Safe Sleep, that will just be recreated the next time you sleep the machine.
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Gothenburg, Sweden
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Apr 5, 2015, 07:05 AM
Your Mac can have more than one swap file. There is always one, but multiple files will be created if your OS needs more swap space. If you have lots of them, a quick reboot will clean that up, but they will be recreated if the OS needs more swap again at some point.

As Spheric says, Do Not delete the swap files. You will break things.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
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