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Can not install Xcode

Can not install Xcode as not enough disk storage? what can I do in this case? any suggestions


Hi Tanya,

Welcome to the code crew community.

Probably the best thing to do is to see if you can identify what is consuming the majority of the disk space that you have and if possible, move that to an external drive.

It could be large numbers of photographs or Videos or a lot of music files.

You need to do any moving of data with care so that you maintain the integrity of the Apps that rely on it.

If you are not familiar with Finder and the Mac file structure I would recommend that you seek help from someone experienced in that.

Xcode requires a little more than 30Gb of space to install but it also requires that space again to decompress the downloaded installation file before it starts the installation process. So you need about 60Gb of free space.

The other option is to source a Mac with a bigger disk drive but that might be out of the question if finances don’t allow that kind of outlay.

i also have this insufficient space problem and it is making me INCREDIBLY angry at Apple.

i have gone looking to see what is taking up the space… and it is 54.33 GB of “System Data” that Apple provides zero support for managing.

there is 121GB of storage on this Macbook Air, and 17.45GB is used by apps, 3.73 for messages, 2.67GB for documents, 2.14GB for iCloud Drive, and 285MB for images. There are no time machine backups chewing up space as part of that System Data. Optimise Storage is on. Empty Bin Automatically is on. There are no unsupported apps taking up space. Containers is empty. There is only 4GB taken up by the whole Caches folder in Library. Basically, this computer is hardly being utilised at all and yet MacOS sees fit to chew up 56% of the available storage with no facility for letting me manage or constrain that usage. when i want to download and install XCode, it doesn’t even see fit to automatically review that System Data and decide to free up caches to make space available for the expansion space required for the install, nope - that space is locked up and unavailable. I have insufficient space, and that’s that.

in looking to free up space, i have checked several not-especially-helpful guides which boil down to removing time machine backups and besides that you really need to know what you’re doing because while you can dive in and start deleting system files willy-nilly you’re likely to break stuff - so helpful. Typically, they are selling a third-party cleaner app - which some purchasers report as saving negligible space, so yay. I suspect the reason for that is that these cleaner apps do much the same thing I’ve already checked: delete time machine backups, empty trash, empty download files, check for large files and ask if you actually need them, suggest moving photos to iCloud storage, and so on.

I wouldn’t be so mad at Apple if they just provided an integrated tool to manage the ‘System Data’, to make it possible to select caches and temp folders to clear, etc, just like the Empty Trash stuff. But there is no safe management toolset, in fact no assistance at all.

now, i’m just getting started with XCode/Swift, so i probably don’t need the WHOLE development ecosystem, I should be able to select just relevant modules to reduce the total install size… right? 🫣

Some of the help suggested by people on reddit and other places is :exploding_head: also - like: use another mac to download xcode, installing it to an external hard drive and run xcode from that on the first mac. LOL.

So now I am stalled at iOS Foundations Day 1 Lesson 1 because i literally cannot install the toolset. I feel helpless. Like: what can i actually do to move forward?

Welcome to the community!

Xcode is huge, cause it provides everything, within Xcode 14 you can choose to only download macOS tooling and iOS tooling, no need for watch or tvOS

You should look into Clean My Mac and other 3rd party tools. Depending on what you’ve downloaded previously there’s cache files that could be sitting around from not being uninstalled properly

Clean My Mac saves me 4GB, all in the cache folders I have already identified. That ain’t enough. This is what makes me mad at Apple, it is sucking up 50GB+ of space and being opaque about it. I knew CMM wouldn’t help much, because I’d already done the cleanup activities these sorts of tools do.

When I followed the tutorial link to XCode i did not see any option for deselecting Watch and TV OS, interested to know where i can do that and how much it will save me.

Xcode 14 by default only includes iOS and macOS, I believe

I’d look at programs you have on your computer and search where they may keep cache files and look to delete those

There’s many different 3rd party tools you can try, but 128GB is pretty small of an SSD, and you could try to offload different programs you don’t use often, or download other applications to an external SSD.

I wouldn’t recommend running Xcode on an external hard drive, it’s pretty beefy and people who have tried, I haven’t heard good things