I said cut but I didn’t say how and where to start cutting down your digital clutter.
The Downloads folder
This is usually a big one. It was about 4GB when I had a look this morning. Using the size and date sorting I figured out the biggest and oldest files and dumped them first. If you want to figure out more size allocation usa a tool like Disk Inventory X for Mac or JDiskReport which is cross platform.
Now my Downloads folder is down to 800MB.
Email is a pain. There is no way around it. Google suggests you keep your mail forever and search for it when you want. This is nice but you are just gathering useless information most of the time.
I keep 2 email accounts 1 personal and 1 for work. The personal one is Gmail and the other I POP out with Thunderbird.
I know POP is ancient but it works for me. The Thunderbird profile I use is at least 5 years old and its migrated from Linux to Windows to Mac without a hitch.
I only keep email to about 1 year back and delete mails quite often. I can’t give you email management tips here but the key thing is to delete. Extract the key information to another form ,download attachments and delete.
Remember its an inbox not an archive.
Music & Photos
Back in the day I had a ton of music files on my main drive. Today I only keep 1 playlist of about 20 songs and everything else is on an external drive.
Photos take a ton of space too. I still keep them on my main drive backed up to Time Machine and CrashPlan. Eventually I will move them out to an external drive as well but haven’t had the time or heart to let them go.
The thing about a ton of small files is that they slow down your system quite a bit. The more you can push them out or even use a cloud based service the better.