Know The Best Ways To Clean Scratch Disk on Macbook!

Best Ways To Clean Scratch Disk on Macbook!

Scratch disk is a storage device that is used by graphic design programs like Photoshop for storing temporary project files and data in RAM. Mac users working with photo and video editing apps require proper storage space to run such applications. But, continuous work with these tools can lead to “scratch disk full” notification, which could be a system problem.

In simple terms, let’s suppose you’re editing an image in Photoshop. And, while you’re making adjustments and adding more layers, Photoshop suddenly stops working, and eventually shows the error “Could not complete your request because the scratch disks are full.”

This message might make you stressed!

So, what exactly do these error messages mean? Why is the error interrupting the workflow? And how to get over this situation?

Don’t worry! Cleaning Photoshop cache files or freeing up the disk space can empty the scratch disk space. Even taking recommendations from computer repair technicians is also an ideal option. Because these experts proceed with the cleaning methods carefully without letting you lose your essential project files.

Read the following write-up to clean the scratch disk manually!

Table of Content

What is a Scratch Disk?

How to Clean a Scratch Disk on a MacBook?

  • Free up Disk Space
  • Clear your Photoshop Cache
  • Remove Photoshop Temporary Files
  • Move Photoshop Scratch Disk to an External Hard Drive
  • Free up RAM in Terminal

Wrapping Up!

What is a Scratch Disk?

If there isn’t enough RAM, intensive programs like Photoshop require a space, called virtual memory or cache memory, for storing its temporary files. Thus, it’ll use hard disks’ space to store any extra data, known as a scratch disk.

While working with large images and lots of layers, Photoshop will secretly start to use your drive space. So, it’s recommended that you don’t assign the scratch disks to the drive unless you have no other options.

How to Clean a Scratch Disk on a MacBook?

If you consider the option of cleaning the scratch disks, you need to delete the temp docs. Some users prefer to set an individual hard drive as a scratch disk. However, this isn’t a permanent solution for fixing a problem because a hard drive can also get full after a while. In the following guide, we’ll mention some effective methods to clean a Scratch Disk. Let’s have a look:

Free up Disk Space

A “scratch disk full” error usually appears when your hard drive has less storage space. However, by removing the duplicate files, clearing browser caches, emptying the Trash, deleting unused applications, and others, it becomes easy to free up disk space. Additionally, there is another alternative way, such as security and Mac cleaner software to remove duplicate photos with just a few clicks.

Also Read: Steps to Restore QuickBooks Backup File

Clear your Photoshop Cache

The other effective way to clean the scratch disks is to delete Photoshop’s cache. It’ll fix the issue showing up an error of “scratch disk is full”. So, your Photoshop doesn’t display any lag. However, cleaning the apps’ cache means removing the previous versions of your projects from your Mac.

Therefore, it’s recommended that you save your previous projects files. Thus, you can successfully make changes without harming the previous files. Here are the following steps to clear Photoshop’s cache:

  • Launch Photoshop and start a project.
  • Now, go to Edit>Purge>All. It’ll remove all the various Photoshop caches.
  • Click “OK” for confirmation.
  • If there are other projects, repeat the same process and check – whether the ‘scratch disk is full’ error is resolved or not.

The Photoshop cache contains all types of cache categories, including histories, video cache, clipboard, and others.

Remove Photoshop Temporary Files

Sometimes, it becomes quite complicated to remove Photoshop’s cache using the above-mentioned method. In this scenario, use a manual option to remove the app’s temporary files. For finding out temp files, open Finder and select files with extension “.tmp”. Photoshop will display the filename with “pst”. So, anything matching those parameters can be erased.

Set External Hard Drive as Photoshop Scratch Disk

If you don’t want to delete files on your hard disk, an adequate method is to set up Photoshop’s scratch disk partition on an external disk. However, you always need to attach your external hard drive with your MAC, every time you’re using Photoshop. Here are the following steps:

  • Launch Photoshop and tap on Photoshop on the menu bar.
  • Choose Preferences>Scratch Disks.
  • Now, select the external drive and deselect the built-in hard disk with low storage space.
  • Now, proceed further with the “OK” button.

For forcefully shutting down Photoshop, use the Command + Option + Esc, and reopen it again. Hence, photoshop will now use the external hard disk as the scratch disk.

Free up RAM in Terminal

If your Photoshop stops working because of less RAM, there is a command you can run in Terminal.

  • Open the Terminal app.
  • Paste in: Sudo purge.
  • Then, enter your password.

It will erase all files available in the virtual memory. There are a few more software to free up RAM. These tools will take some load off your Mac’s memory.

Wrapping Up!

These above-mentioned major solutions will make your scratch disks error-free for additional space on your Mac. Sometimes, freeing up space manually can make things exhausting. Therefore, taking recommendations from IT support professionals is also an excellent option. They have the appropriate tools and software to remove unnecessary cache, trash, and junk files.

Adobe Photoshop can slow down your Mac if the scratch disk is full. Therefore, a technician with great knowledge and expertise first discovers the reasons and applies the solutions accordingly. For example, the services of apple repair in Singapore include all such diagnostic services which used to determine the reasons for slow Mac performance.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here