iCloud space is twice the size of my databases

I’ve seen a few similar topics but none of the answers work for me.
I have 28 GB of data in about 10 databases in DevonThink.

My Mobile Documents / DevonThink folder is 56 GB, duplicated on both the macs I use for DT.


  • removed DevonThink from all my machines (including iOS devices)
  • removed by hand the iCloud Mobile Documents / DT folder
  • removed the databases from all but ONE machine.
  • disabled DevonThink from the “iCloud storage list” and disabled the “Optimize Mac Storage” button

and rebuilt the entire sync setup from scratch, syncing ONLY one database worth 1,5 GB of data.

And still: 56 GB of cloud data eating up space on my drive.

This is definitely not ideal as I’ve got only 500 GB on both my Macs …

Either those 56GB are ghosts in my iCloud drive but I don’t know how to get rid of them, or DT is uploading them on its own “just in case” and that’s not good.

Any pointers?

Did you configure your iCloud location to “Synchronize content if indexed documents”?

Instead of deleting the iCloud location and manually removing the databases from Mobile Documents, have you tried “Verify Location” to check for errors, or “Clean Location” to wipe the storage and resynchronize the database(s)?

If you suspect there’s an error in iCloud, you might consider logging out of iCloud in System Preferences, rebooting, and logging back in. This can sometimes fix iCloud issues. I don’t recommend this except as a last resort, because the logout/login kicks off a cascade of events on your computer and involves resynchronizing Mail, Calendar, and other things and can be time consuming to recover from.

Thanks for the tips.
a) yes - I don’t think I have that many indexed documents, but may have had at some point …
b) I have verified, hadn’t cleaned -
c) had logged everything out of icloud. The nightmare :slight_smile:

After cleaning and turning off the indexed documents, my “Mobile Docs” folder has dramatically decreased in size. However Daisy Disk tells me that “hidden space” is now at exactly the size of the previous chunk. I’ll see if this is just cruft that iCloud will purge out of the system.

A few questions:

  • is there a preferred strategy for the “indexed documents” download?
  • is there a downside to cleaning up ? It’s kind of scary as everything just disappears from the “remote” location

Daisy Disk’s reporting of hidden space is not easy to interpret. Most likely the space is taken by Time Machine snapshots and will reduce as Time Machine does its updating.

I doubt there is one-size-fits-all preferred approach.

Cleaning means starting over with database syncs to that location – the downside is you need to wait until that is finished.

DT is not uploading anything on its own.
This is iCloud’s turf, not ours. We sync locally and iCloud uploads the data on its own schedule. We have no control over the speed or timing of that process.

A friend of mine, that works near to Apple, said that they are updating iCloud to enable new stuff for iOS 12 and macOS Mojave and iCloud won’t work as reliable as normal… I know that because I had problems with iCloud Drive (not related to DT, my sync DB is in my NAS) and asked him.

My problems were dramatically slow sync and false info about what was synced, file size and other stuff.