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How Do I Delete Version History and Reclaim HD Space?

I keep a daily diary about a family members dementia in a pages document. I’ve been writing this diary since May 2019. It’s currently more than 1,000 pages in length.
When checking hard disc usage recently I found that the .DocumentRevisions-V100 file had grown to 4GB in size.
Research indicates that this is version history for documents created in pages, numbers, etc.
I assume that the current size is because there are probably hundreds of versions of this diary within the DocumentRevisions file. I also assume that these versions go back to 2019, and that I’m never going to want to revert to a version from that year.
How do I review .DocumentRevisions to check my assumptions?
How do I prune older versions that are never going to be needed and reclaim some HD Space?

Malcolm James

Comments: 3 Responses to “How Do I Delete Version History and Reclaim HD Space?”

    2 years ago

    First, I would ask yourself if you need to do anything at all. Are you short on drive space? If not, then why worry about this?

    If you are critically short of drive space and you've exhausted all other ways to get some back (uninstalling unused apps, using iCloud optimize features, archiving old projects to external drives, etc) then I would still stay out of your DocumentRevisions folder as it would be easy to break things there.

    You should be able to simply choose File, Save a Copy to create a new copy of your document that doesn't have that history. But it wouldn't get rid of the history as the old file would still be around. You'd need to delete that.

    I don't like this at all. First, am I correct in assuming that this file is very very important to you. I would be looking at ways to make more copies of it, not less -- archive and back it up in multiple ways. Seconds, I doubt that much of the DocumentRevisions folder is this one document. Only changes are saved as revisions, not entire copies of the document. So even large documents would be storing very little in the way of revision data.

    Malcolm James
    2 years ago

    Thanks for the feedback. The file is important to me, and it is backed up: to a backblaze account, using time machine and an HD clone. Given the extensive back ups I would question whether I actually need versioning?

    2 years ago

    Malcolm: You can do what you want to do, but versioning is so critical in my opinion. While working on a document, what if you change or delete a paragraph and want it back later? Maybe you 'll never need it, but why not at least keep the option? Seems wrong to be removing safety nets when they can be so valuable.

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