Free Up Disk Space Local Snapshots

Ever since macOS Mojave we have been using Local Snapshots in one way or another. Most people interact with these Snapshots through the Time Machine backup App. The problem with all of this is Snapshots do take up space on your Hard Drive. Supposedly, Time Machine cleans out old backups in its house cleaning routine, but in my opinion that is not too reliable. If you need to recoup some space on todays SSD drives, removing Snapshots is a good way to go.


If you are using Time Machine you can Delete old Snapshots by doing the following. Go into the Time Machine System Preference Pane and uncheck “Back Up Automatically”. Wait a few minutes for the Snapshots to Delete, then check that box back on once again. If you use an App like Carbon Copy Cloner to backup your Mac, you can Delete Snapshots by clicking on them and hitting the Delete Key:


If you use the third party Utility App Cocktail, you just go into the System Tab and then Time Machine and click on “Delete”:

Cocktail Snapshots

You can also Delete Local Snapshots using the excellent Onyx Utility App by going into the Utilities Tab:

Onyx Delete

I am sure there are other Utilities that allow you to Delete Local Snapshots. The idea is to remove some or all of these Snapshots to recoup some hard drive space. SSD drives are great, but they do have less space than the old spinning hard drives. 


Backups are important, but they can become unwieldy. Managing your backups might require recouping hard drive space on your SSD drive by Deleting some or all of your Local Snapshots. Proceed with caution, but don’t hesitate to do this if you are running out of Drive space.