Apple is still the world's largest "PC" vendor, but the market is rapidly declining

Tutorial: free up a lot of space on your notebook by turning off a Time Machine feature

If you, like me, have an Apple notebook, an SSD (solid-state drive, or solid state drive) with less space than you would like and uses an HDD (hard disk drive, or external hard drive) to make backups via Time Machine, know that it is possible to recover good gigabytes with a very simple trick. Before talking about it, however, let's understand the logic behind it all.

Notebook and desktop computers are essentially different. While one focuses on mobility, the other stands there on his desk. When opening Time Machine on an iMac to retrieve some file or document that was improperly deleted, for example, you will most likely be next to the external HDD you use to make backups. With a MacBook this is not necessarily true, after all, the machine was made to be put in your backpack / bag and you can be at home with your MacBook while the blessed external HDD used for backup is at work. With that scenario, would it be impossible for you to retrieve that deleted document in the morning while you were working, anyway?

OS X Yosemite 10.10 cone - Time Machine

At the! to which enter local catches Time Machine. This Apple support article explains well, see s:

You are not always close to the Time Machine backup drive when using the Mac notebook. When the backup drive is not connected, Time Machine will make copies of files created, modified or deleted and store them on the boot drive. These copies are known as local catches. After the backup drive is available, Time Machine copies the local captures from the boot drive to the backup drive, so that they are stored in both places. It is possible to recover files from local captures even when you are away from the backup drive.

Seriously, this is what we can call xenial! what we expect from companies like Apple: that it anticipates your need by identifying that you have a notebook, that has the Time Machine feature enabled and that, many times, it may not be close to your backup drive and therefore, in those cases, it creates a local backup of everything so that you can recover that very important file without a headache.

The thing is so well done that it takes into account the space you have available on the Mac. That is, Time Machine creates / maintains local captures only when there is enough free space on the boot drive. There are two different scenarios:

  • If less than 20% of the total storage space is available, Time Machine will remove local catches, starting with the oldest one, until it reaches more than 20% of free space.
  • If less than 10% (or less than 5GB) of storage space is available, Time Machine will remove local catches more quickly. When there is only one capture, Time Machine will stop creating new captures. Time Machine initially replaces the previous capture with a new one, and as the free space increases, it continues to create captures as usual.

This is all done silently (the Time Machine status in the menu bar is not changed when it creates or modifies a local capture, only when it is actually backing up to the external HDD). Clap for Apple, really! 👏🏼


AirPorts (Wi-Fi bases)

Price view: from R $ 629.10Installed price: in at 24x of R $ 31.60 (with interest)Models: Express, Extreme and Time Capsule (2TB and 3TB).Release: mid-2013 (except the Express model)

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But you, with your 128GB or 256GB, may be suffering from space. You can, for example, be like me (who works at home and has an AirPort Time Capsule or an AirPort Extreme, with an HDD stuck in his USB port next to it automatically making backups) and not need these local captures.

I use the CleanMyMac 3 app to clean my Mac from time to time and, last time, I managed to release a good gigabyte. But notice the image below:

Are you seeing those 21.2GB entitled “Backups”? Because, they are such local captures that the system makes automatically when you activate Time Machine on a notebook and CleanMyMac or any other application of the kind does not have access to these files since they are hidden precisely so that they are not deleted manually. As I said above, I don’t need this resource here because I’m always at home (home office) next to my Time Capsule. Apple didn’t put a button or anything like that in Time Machine System Preferences so that users can turn off this feature easily, but the Terminal exists just for those moments.

If you are sure that you do not need these local backups and want to turn this feature off, open the Terminal and enter the following command (then I need to enter your password to confirm the command):

sudo tmutil disablelocal

By doing this, you disable the local capture feature and in a few minutes the system will automatically delete the files (in my case, the 21.2GB mentioned above).

Do you regret it and want to return to having the local catches stored on your notebook? No problem, just type the following code in the Terminal (your password is required again to confirm the command):

sudo tmutil enablelocal

By doing this, your notebook will resume creating local captures starting from scratch (that is, not consuming as many gigabytes of your HDD / SSD at once).

Here I have “only” 21.2GB, but the reader Guilherme Andrade (the good people who sent us this tip) had an incredible 80GB of local catches! He was even thinking of buying a bigger SSD for the Mac, but after he turned off the feature he saw that it was no longer necessary if you need to do this type of SSD upgrade, be sure to check out the MM Store!

For more information on this, please read this Apple support article carefully.

Have you managed to recover how much space? Remembering that the feature is very useful and even taking up a significant amount of space on your notebook, it should only be turned off if you really are sure you don't need it.

(via How-To Geek)