iPad system using 60% of storage

slscott99

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 18, 2018
3
0
new jerset
Hi,

New here and sorry if there is already a thread on this -I could not find it. I have a 16GB iPad Air. And that storage was perfectly fine when I bought it because I don't store music or photos on it. However after a few years of IOS upgrades I now see that the System is using almost 11GB of my 16 available storage. I have to offload most of the apps I use and I am constantly getting out of space messages.

Is there anything to be done here ? Why do these Apple IOS updates continue to grow to large sizes like this.

T.I.A,

SLS
 

akash.nu

macrumors 604
May 26, 2016
7,408
8,313
Do you delete data from your messages or WhatsApp or streaming apps. Check in the storage which app is taking the most storage. Go from there.

This is mine after constant usage of data being backed up and restored on new devices since the iPhone 5S.

 
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Newtons Apple

Suspended
Mar 12, 2014
22,764
14,918
Jacksonville, Florida
Hi,

New here and sorry if there is already a thread on this -I could not find it. I have a 16GB iPad Air. And that storage was perfectly fine when I bought it because I don't store music or photos on it. However after a few years of IOS upgrades I now see that the System is using almost 11GB of my 16 available storage. I have to offload most of the apps I use and I am constantly getting out of space messages.

Is there anything to be done here ? Why do these Apple IOS updates continue to grow to large sizes like this.

T.I.A,

SLS
Updates do add features and take up more space.
 

slscott99

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 18, 2018
3
0
new jerset
Do you delete data from your messages or WhatsApp or streaming apps. Check in the storage which app is taking the most storage. Go from there.

This is mine after constant usage of data being backed up and restored on new devices since the iPhone 5S.

Do you delete data from your messages or WhatsApp or streaming apps. Check in the storage which app is taking the most storage. Go from there.

This is mine after constant usage of data being backed up and restored on new devices since the iPhone 5S.

Yes I did all that - I have 10.45 GB used by "System". I assume that is all IOS - but not sure if it contains backups prior to upgrades and if there is anything I can do about that !
 

rui no onna

macrumors 604
Oct 25, 2013
6,799
3,089
Try downloading Hearthstone to force iOS to do some housekeeping. Alternately, backup and restore via iTunes.
 

akash.nu

macrumors 604
May 26, 2016
7,408
8,313
Yes I did all that - I have 10.45 GB used by "System". I assume that is all IOS - but not sure if it contains backups prior to upgrades and if there is anything I can do about that !
When you say 10.45 GB being used by “system”, what are you using to see this? - iTunes?!
 

rui no onna

macrumors 604
Oct 25, 2013
6,799
3,089
Hearthstone looks like a game ?
Yes, it's a 3GB game, iirc.

If you try to download large apps from the App Store and you don't have sufficient free space, iOS will be forced to do some housekeeping. On a 128GB iPad, it managed to free up around 8GB total (after deleting Hearthstone).
 

Richard8655

macrumors 65816
Mar 11, 2009
1,077
440
Chicago
My iPad Air 16gb had the same issue. I found that doing a restore from a backup via iTunes freed up a lot of storage space. I believe fragmented, invalid, and unused data/space was cleaned up to help solve this.

As a note, my iPad 5 system size seems to be going down over time and varies frequently. It’s now only 1.3gb. It’s as if parts of it are being offloaded to the cloud. I’m on IOS 11.3. I can’t explain how or why it’s working this way.

5461BFA3-0080-4362-A5BA-DC806EE4F1C3.png
 
Last edited:

profets

macrumors 601
Mar 18, 2009
4,445
4,153
iPad mini 4 with 64GB, 26GB being used by system.

Never quite understood it. I’m sure a restore from backup would clear it.

21E8F103-5A30-4BA7-8731-AF4639DAEDCC.jpeg
 

charlituna

macrumors G3
Jun 11, 2008
9,617
804
Los Angeles, CA
iPad mini 4 with 64GB, 26GB being used by system.

Never quite understood it. I’m sure a restore from backup would clear it.

View attachment 767528
it does. a lot of times the excess 'system' storage is various cache files. some from 3rd party apps but also some from things like streaming video via the TV app and iTunes purchases/rentals and even Apple Music. those things are supposed to clear out after you are done with them but if something in the system gets corrupted they don't always clean up properly. and tricks like trying to download a big app or rent a movie might clear out space now but they don't fix the issue in the long run
 

cobracnvt

macrumors 6502
Apr 6, 2017
276
114
I'm on a fully updated 256GB iPad Pro 12.9 gen 2 and mine said the "system" was using 80GB! I was working fine, as I still have 100 GB free. I just happened to check what my iPad was using after seeing this thread.

I then looked away for a second, and looked back at my iPad the the "system" section at the bottom of the list disappeared. It's only showing what each app is using. I can't get it to show "system" usage anymore. Has anyone seen this behavior of the "system" section showing and then disappearing.
 
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secretk

macrumors 6502
Oct 19, 2018
482
291
I am with 6th gen iPad and I just checked the System storage and it's around 10.4 GB so it's similar to what you have. The iPad is new. I just bought it last month so I doubt that it has a lot of backups being stored.
 

Greenmeenie

macrumors 65816
Jan 14, 2013
1,287
1,723
Over time, software gets more demanding. That’s just the nature of the beast, and why they don’t offer 16 gigs anymore on new iPads. Soon 64 gigs will be the new 16 gigs. Short of buying a new iPad, you’re just gonna have to delete some apps and move all your photos & video to iCloud if you haven’t already.
 
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lugolo

macrumors newbie
Feb 11, 2014
21
9
Spain
My iPad Air 16gb had the same issue. I found that doing a restore from a backup via iTunes freed up a lot of storage space. I believe fragmented, invalid, and unused data/space was cleaned up to help solve this.

As a note, my iPad 5 system size seems to be going down over time and varies frequently. It’s now only 1.3gb. It’s as if parts of it are being offloaded to the cloud. I’m on IOS 11.3. I can’t explain how or why it’s working this way.

View attachment 767227
I think System include iCloud Drive storage downloaded in your device. Mine says almost 25 GB and it is because of PDF Expert iCloud files.
 

Proteinaceous

macrumors regular
Dec 4, 2004
110
76
There is something I noticed the other day related to this. OI think there are some issues with how iOS is categorizing things. I checked my iPad storage shortly after I set everyting up and it looked as I would have expected. Since then I’ve been downloading a bunch of movies onto my iPad over the past few days and only the “Other” category has been growing (not the “media” category, as I would have expected). I currently have 350-400 GB labeled as “Other” on the graph...and I’m sure that’s not system files.
 

lax28

macrumors 6502
Sep 28, 2014
268
145
New Jersey
Out of curiosity I just checked my new iPad Pro after resorting from back up from my old 10.5 pro and system is using 94.83 GB