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Ritmo

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 27, 2009
53
44
Finland
Finally figured out what was taking all the space in my backups.
I thought that the “Apps using iCloud” setting would be controlling whether the messages are backed up, but it seems they’re regardless going to be backed up.
Is there any way to keep them only locally on device?
 

digitalexplr

macrumors 65816
Dec 13, 2016
1,335
876
Central Missouri
Finally figured out what was taking all the space in my backups.
I thought that the “Apps using iCloud” setting would be controlling whether the messages are backed up, but it seems they’re regardless going to be backed up.
Is there any way to keep them only locally on device?
Settings/Apple ID/iCloud under Apps Using iCloud turn off messages from the iCloud backup.
 

Ritmo

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 27, 2009
53
44
Finland
Settings/Apple ID/iCloud under Apps Using iCloud turn off messages from the iCloud backup.

Yeah that’s the setting that doesn’t work. Or there’s some duplication happening. You can try it yourself by deleting some large images or conversations from messages “Settings/General/Storage/Messages”. You’ll see your backup size will decrease
 

PBG4 Dude

macrumors 68040
Jul 6, 2007
3,893
3,895
Yeah that’s the setting that doesn’t work. Or there’s some duplication happening. You can try it yourself by deleting some large images or conversations from messages “Settings/General/Storage/Messages”. You’ll see your backup size will decrease
Do you have any other Apple devices? They may still be set to use iCloud for Messages.
 

Shirasaki

macrumors G5
May 16, 2015
12,844
6,802
There seems to be no way to disable just message from iCloud backup. The “messages” toggle only enables iCloud messages or not. The stored message still counts as iCloud storage quota. This kinda sucks, I’d argue.
 

Ritmo

macrumors member
Original poster
Mar 27, 2009
53
44
Finland
Do you have any other Apple devices? They may still be set to use iCloud for Messages.
I have used it but turned it off.
So, I used to have multiple devices under same iCloud account backup. Couple years ago I started using the messages and turned on the iCloud feature. As the messages iCloud size is visible in the iCloud usage bar, I turned it off after a while. Over the last few months however the backup sizes just kept increasing until not even one device could backup. I figured if I turn everything related to iCloud off surely the backup size would go to near 0. But no, it was only when I tried deleting the message history, mainly the images, gifs and stickers(each one you send is saved as separate file btw) the backup started decreasing.

There seems to be no way to disable just message from iCloud backup. The “messages” toggle only enables iCloud messages or not. The stored message still counts as iCloud storage quota. This kinda sucks, I’d argue.
That’s what I feared. Feels a bit strange they would force upload everyone’s messages to the servers without even an option to turn it off. I guess I’ll put my tinfoil hat on and use something else.
 

PBG4 Dude

macrumors 68040
Jul 6, 2007
3,893
3,895
That’s weird, because messages are definitely not backing up to the cloud on my setup. If they did I’d probably be out of my free space by now.
 

chrfr

macrumors G4
Jul 11, 2009
11,506
5,061
If you use "Messages in iCloud", then your messages are not included in the iPhone's iCloud backup. If you're seeing iCloud storage used by Messages, that's the Messages in iCloud feature. Apple isn't clear whether having it enabled on any one device in your iCloud account precludes including messages included in the backup on any other device.

 

Fragsprock

macrumors newbie
Oct 3, 2021
2
0
If you use "Messages in iCloud", then your messages are not included in the iPhone's iCloud backup. If you're seeing iCloud storage used by Messages, that's the Messages in iCloud feature. Apple isn't clear whether having it enabled on any one device in your iCloud account precludes including messages included in the backup on any other device.

years of removing all my imessages every 2-3 months to keep my backups running under 5 GBs when all i had to do was this? thank you, you just saved me so much time.
 

Fragsprock

macrumors newbie
Oct 3, 2021
2
0
years of removing all my imessages every 2-3 months to keep my backups running under 5 GBs when all i had to do was this? thank you, you just saved me so much time.
Never mind. While it initially shows a bunch of free space once you toggle on, after a few hours I got an email stating I’m out of space. No way around it. Oh well.
 

chrislstark

macrumors newbie
Jul 18, 2020
3
10
You can't prevent Messages from taking up space in iCloud. Either the toggle is on and they're syncing across devices, or the toggle is off and it's just part of the iCloud backup of the device itself. But keep in mind the vast majority of that space is attachments. So if you go into your iPhone storage settings and save your photos and videos from your Messages into your Photos and delete those attachments from the messages themselves, you'll only have the text part of the messages which takes up virtually no space. You won't have those attachments in-line within those conversations anymore but you'll still have them saved. And since you can add captions to all your photos anyway you can even notate what message the photo/video came from, who sent it to you, and when if you want.
 
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