How to Clean Up iCloud Drive on PC/iOS [Step-by-Step Guide]

This post will show you how to clean up iCloud Drive. Read on to learn 3 effective ways to free up iCloud Drive storage.

May by May Updated May 30, 2024
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What’s a good strategy for freeing up iCloud space?

I’ve hit the limit on my 50 GB plan and want to free up some space. Like most people, it's almost entirely photos & videos taking up the space. The simplest strategy would be to do like the pre-iCloud days and just mass-offload the oldest stuff. So how to clean up iCloud drive to manage iCloud storage?

- Question from Reddit

Why Need to Clean Up iCloud Drive?

iCloud Drive is Apple’s cloud storage and synchronization service that lets you store a variety of files (documents, photos, videos, presentations, and more) in one central online space. These files can then be accessed and synchronized on a variety of Apple devices such as iPhones, iPads, Macs, and even Windows computers through iCloud for Windows.

Before knowing how to clean up iCloud Drive, you should know several compelling reasons why you should clean up iCloud Drive:

  • Free Up Storage Space: iCloud Drive offers a limited amount of free storage space. By deleting unnecessary files, you free up valuable space to store important documents, photos, and backups.
  • Optimize Syncing and Performance: A cluttered iCloud Drive slows syncing between devices and reduces overall performance. Cleanup ensures smoother syncing and faster file access.
  • Improved Organization: Organizing and organizing files makes it faster and easier to access the items you need, which improves productivity and saves time searching for specific files.

How to Clean Up iCloud Drive on PC/iOS

Part 1. Before Cleaning Up - Assess Your iCloud Storage

First, view your iCloud Storage on a Windows PC, iPhone, iPad, or through the iCloud website. Determine what's taking up space in your iCloud Storage, iCloud Backups, iCloud Photos, or iCloud Drive. This will guide you through the steps necessary to clean up and effectively manage your storage.

#1. Check iCloud Drive Storage on iOS (iPhone/iPad)

To check your iCloud storage on your iPhone or iPad running iOS, follow these steps:

Step 1: Access your device's home screen and locate the Settings app > In the Settings menu, scroll down and tap your name, which is typically located at the top.

Step 2: Within your personal settings, locate and select iCloud > Look for and tap Manage Storage, and you will be presented with a comprehensive overview of your iCloud storage usage.

Check iCloud Storage on iOS

#2. Check iCloud Drive Storage on Windows PC

To check your iCloud storage on a Windows computer using iCloud for Windows, follow these steps:

Step 1: Launch the iCloud for Windows application on your computer > Sign in to the application using your Apple ID credentials.

Step 2: Once logged in, navigate to the bottom section of the interface, where you will find an overview of your iCloud storage.

Check iCloud Storage on Windows

How to Free Up iCloud Drive on iOS/Windows/Website

If you find your iCloud storage is full, how to free up iCloud Drive? Well, this section will show you 3 easy ways to clean up your iCloud Drive.

Way 1. Clean Up iCloud Drive on iPad/iPhone

To declutter your iCloud Drive on your iPad or iPhone, here is a full guide on how to clear iCloud Drive:

Step 1: Access the Settings app on your iPad or iPhone > Navigate to your Apple ID settings by tapping on your name.

Step 2: Find and select iCloud from the list of options > Locate and tap Manage Storage, and choose iCloud Drive to access the files stored in iCloud Drive.

Step 3: Review the list of files displayed and swipe left on any file you wish to remove > Tap the Delete button that appears to confirm the deletion of the file.

Clean Up iCloud Drive on iOS

Way 2. Clean Up iCloud Drive on Windows PC

To tidy up your iCloud Drive on a Windows computer using iCloud for Windows, you can easily remove files to create more space in your iCloud storage. So, how to clean up your iCloud Drive? Follow these steps:

Step 1: Open Windows File Explorer and navigate to the iCloud Drive folder > Within the iCloud Drive folder, select the specific files and folders that you wish to delete.

Step 2: Right-click the selected items, and from the context menu, choose the Delete option.

Clean Up iCloud Drive on Windows

Way 3. Clean Up iCloud Drive via iCloud.com

To free up your iCloud Drive using the iCloud website, here is how to clear iCloud Drive on iCloud.com:

Step 1: Sign in to iCloud.com using your Apple ID credentials > Once logged in, locate and click the Drive option on the iCloud interface to access your iCloud Drive.

Choose iCloud Drive

Step 2: On the left side, click Browse to navigate through your files and folders > Select the specific files and folders you wish to remove.

Step 3: To delete the selected items, click the Delete icon located in the top menu.

Bonus Tip: Download Files from iCloud to PC to Free Up iCloud Storage

FoneTool provides a convenient way for easily downloading your iCloud files directly to your Windows PC. With FoneTool, you can manage your files on iCloud and iCloud Drive, making it easy to upload, download, and delete photos.

Whether you're switching to a new Apple ID or not, FoneTool ensures that your iCloud data migrates from one account to another. So, how to manage your iCloud Drive? Download FoneTool on your Windows PC today and get started.

Download Freeware Win 10/8.1/8/7/XP
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Step 1: Launch FoneTool and access the My iCloud section > Sign in using your Apple ID credentials and click Manage iCloud.

Manage iCloud

Step 2: Locate and click icons such as Photos > Choose the photos that you want to delete > Click the Download button to download your iCloud photos to PC.

Choose Photos to Download from iCloud to PC

Also Read: 5 Best Ways to Free Up iCloud Storage on iPhone/Mac >>

The Bottom Line

After reading this post, you might know how to clean up iCloud Drive. There are a few basic steps to follow when organizing your iCloud Drive. First, it's important to evaluate your current iCloud storage to see how much storage space is being used.

Once you've assessed your storage space, it's time to take action and delete the files that are taking up valuable storage space in iCloud Drive as well as iCloud Photos and other iCloud services. In this case, FoneTool is a good iCloud manager that can help you selectively delete things from iCloud with ease.

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