Local iPhone and iPad backups can use a little space. Here’s how to view and free up the amount of space used by backups. These tips work on macOS Catalina, macOS Mojave, and other recent versions of macOS.
Before deleting iPhone and iPad backups from your Mac, we suggest that you export them to an external drive. You can use Time Machine, or just copy and paste the backup folder. You can also activate iCloud backup. Before deleting a backup, make sure you have copied it to another location or are sure you no longer need it.
Delete backups from storage management
macOS Mojave has introduced a new storage management tool that lists iOS backups. Previously, you had to navigate to a specific Finder folder to view all iOS backup files on your Mac.
To access it, click on the “Apple” icon in the menu bar, then select the “About this Mac” option.
Here, go to the “Storage” tab and click on the “Manage” button.
In the Storage Management window, click the “iOS files” option in the sidebar.
You will now see all iOS file backups here. Right click on the iOS backup you want to delete and click on the “Delete” option.
Click the “Delete” button again to confirm your choice.
The iOS backup will now be deleted and you will recover the storage space. Repeat this process to delete additional backups.
Delete iPhone and iPad backups from Finder
Starting with macOS Catalina, Apple has divided the iTunes application into several applications:Music, podcasts and television. The responsibility of syncing iPhone and iPad now is based on the Finder.
If you are used to managing your device backups from iTunes, you can follow the same procedure from the Finder application.
First, connect your iPhone or iPad to your Mac, open the Finder app and select the device in the sidebar. Here, click on the “Manage backups” button.
The pop-up window now lists all iPhone and iPad backups on the Mac. Select a backup that you want to delete, then click on the “Delete backup” button.
In the pop-up window, confirm your step by clicking on the “Delete” button.
The iOS backup will now be deleted. You can do this for any backups you want to get rid of.
Find all iPhone and iPad backups in Finder
If you’re not running macOS Mojave, or if you just prefer to manually delete the files and folder, you can do it from the Finder app.
All iPhone and iPad backups are stored in a specific sub-folder of the Library folder.
You can get there quickly using the Spotlight Search. Click on the “Search” icon in the menu bar or press Command + Space to open it, paste the following text and press Enter.
~ / Library / Application support / MobileSync / Backup /
The Finder will open instantly and you will see all the folders for iOS backups. The only problem here is that the folder names are not readable. You will not know the iOS device associated with the backup. However, you can use the time stamp to determine the age of the backup.
If you want to delete all iOS backups from your Mac, this is the quickest method.
You can select the backups (folders) you want to delete, right-click and select the “Move to trash” option to delete them.
To free up storage space on your Mac, right-click the “Trash” icon and select “Empty Trash.”
Do you want to free up more space? That’s some tips for freeing up disk space on a Mac.