Turned on iCloud Photo Library.. Photos still using local storage

Discussion in 'iOS 8' started by MACelmore, Nov 10, 2014.

  1. MACelmore macrumors regular

    Mar 11, 2013
    Hi all,

    I thought the purpose of the iCloud Photo Library was to preserve our precious local storage? I upgraded my iCloud storage to the 25gb option, since I'll only be syncing pictures and a very limited number of documents to it. I turned it on last night and let it download all of my (6.5 GB worth of) pictures to the Drive. I look at my storage today and that space is still being used locally on my phone.

    Any way I can free that space up? And yes, I have "Optimize Phone Storage" checked in the iCloud settings.

    It's weird because I have 5.9GB in my iCloud Photo Library and 6.5GB of my local storage being used by photos (I took a few pictures and screenshots between turning the iCPL on and now). Help?
  2. sdilley14 macrumors 65816

    Feb 8, 2007
    Mesa, AZ
    It's probably obvious, but have you tried giving the phone a hard reset?
  3. gsmornot macrumors 68030


    Sep 29, 2014
    I'm guessing you want to reduce the amount of space used by photos but still have plenty of space on your device. If you're not running low on storage it does not appear the phone will reduce the size of the photos. They have not for me anyhow.

    I have about 7GB of photos and videos and with the option turned on, nothing happens. I have a 64GB phone with 42GB free space. So, for me nothing happens. My wifes 16GB phone with 2GB of photos, they will reduce in size.
  4. FreeState macrumors 68000


    Jun 24, 2004
    San Diego, CA
    This. The OS reduces file size as needed - its done on the fly.
  5. e270889o, Nov 10, 2014
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2014

    e270889o macrumors member

    Jul 9, 2012
    Once activated and uploaded all photos, deactivate. It will ask you to accept since all photos will be deleted from iphone. If not, deleted yourself from every folder, including Deleted (the 30 days recovery folder)

    Then activate again, it will only download the optimize photo.

    I went this way from 1gb to barely 250mb

    I think is a bug that it doesn't delete the fullsize library after first activation
  6. MACelmore thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 11, 2013
    So you're saying the photos won't be "optimized" unless necessary. Hmmmm, that doesn't sound right. If that's correct, then that is REALLY annoying.


    Thanks, I'll try this.


    If turning the iCPL off and on doesn't work, I'll try this. Thanks! Will report back tonight what happens!
  7. gsmornot macrumors 68030


    Sep 29, 2014
    I was taking a guess.

    So, I looked and found an answer on the Apple support forums and its similar to what was stated above but with a bit more detail. If you want to reduce your storage now turn on IPL and let the upload complete. Once completed, turn IPL off via settings, photos. While IPL is off delete all photos from your camera roll (which will show since IPL is off at the moment). Make sure to delete all photos from deleted photos as well. Now, turn IPL back on and let it sync. What you get will be the optimized versions of your photos.

    If you like, connect your phone to a PC and do a backup of your photos before you delete if you're worried about the process. While you have your phone connected, you can select all photos and delete from there or you will need to do it one-by-one via the app. My lightning cable is downstairs and I didn't feel like going to get it so I selected photos one at a time via the photos app and hit delete.

    Some things I have noticed...photos I took with my DSLR (using Lightroom produced JPG files) and uploaded via beta.icloud.com did not sort based on the info in their exif data. I have a GPS for my DSLR as well and it did not pick up on that either to sort them in moments. The other thing is the files were not optimized if they came from my DSLR. Only photos from my iPhone's (about 4 generations worth) optimized. My photos storage space on my phone went from 6.8GB to just over 500MB. So, it works but it took me doing some manual labor.
  8. e270889o macrumors member

    Jul 9, 2012
    Forgot this in my explanation. Thanks
  9. MACelmore thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 11, 2013
    You sir... You are awesome. Thanks!
  10. BigCLC macrumors member


    Sep 18, 2014
    It took about a day after uploading all my photos to really see a storage difference (and it was huge about 3 gbs!)

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