Force iOS Devices to Recalculate “Other” Capacity in iTunes

Apr 12, 2012 - 31 Comments

iTunes Other Capacity

The “Other” capacity in iTunes is supposed to estimate the size of system software, contacts, Messages data, and things that are not listed elsewhere in the capacities list. Sometimes other data will become mislabeled or misappropriated to the “Other” category, and suddenly it’s reported as being much larger than it actually is. Though this has no impact on device performance some people find it annoying, so here’s an easy fix:

  1. Connect the iPad, iPod, or iPhone to a computer
  2. Launch iTunes
  3. Hold the Power and Home button until the device forcibly reboots

The Other space should recalculate to be a reasonable amount, though you may need to relaunch iTunes to see the change.

If the above method didn’t work for you, try the traditional approach to fixing a gigantic Other category size, you may need to restore the iOS device though.

Thanks to hironaka and alan for the tip

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Posted by: Paul Horowitz in iPad, iPhone, iTunes, Tips & Tricks, Troubleshooting

31 Comments

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  1. abacus rosse says:

    Took mine from 1.6GB to 1.2GB. I didn’t really see a problem with the original number but good to know anyway.

  2. I face this problem on my iPod Touch 8GB , The “other” capacity is shown wrong. This trick works great, now iTunes displays the correct used capacity.

  3. paul baccini says:

    Over a week my ‘other’ just blew out my capacity. I usually sinc once a week but i did it a couple of times that week coz it was going spastic. I followed instructions on a couple of forums and nothing happened. I was finally told to restore my phone’s settings. Very stupid move. When – what is it? Apple? – when they tell you that restoring your phone’s settings will take it back to factory settings you would think, literally, that it would take ONLY YOUR PHONE’S SETTINGS BACK, not your SIM card’s. Now, I’m not a technically minded sorta person, but I do understand the English language. Under iPhone’s instructions I performed an operation which would effect only my phone… those instructions wiped my SIM card. I have lost 20 years of contacts!
    Any suggestions at all? Other than suing the muthaf**k’n c**t out of them?!
    (Sorry for the suggested expletives, but I’m pretty cross!)

  4. kyle says:

    it changed mine from 1.99 GB to 1.95… big help.

  5. Mike says:

    Awesome man, took mine from 8.8gb of other to 0.83!!! Sweet!

  6. trenton says:

    did not work at all for me

  7. trenton says:

    i restored my phone and my other went up from 5.2 to 5.8! WTH????

  8. Darko says:

    I had worked over problem and solved it to my satisfaction – listening to no one from forums and performing my logic:
    step 1. Backup phone (with Sync, have ‘Backup to this computer’ CHECKED)
    step 2. Restore iPhone and when done ‘Set as New iPhone’ (DO NOT choose to backup from last backup)
    step 3. Once iPhone is ready and working, reconnect to iTunes and only then choose to Restore from backup from step 1., and restore your device once again (all old data will appear, but iTunes will show SHRANK Other capacity (mine shrank from 3 Gb to .65 Gb)).
    Hope this helps.

    • Peter says:

      @Darko – your solution totally worked for me too after trying several other “fixes” I saw posted on the web. I got a 10x reduction in the “other” file size. Yay!

    • Brandon A says:

      This worked! Thank you so much…Back up to NEW PHONE

    • ViperKim says:

      @ Darko. Just tried this & it work great. Went from 5.5 Gb of “other” to 1.04Gb (about 81% reduction). Free space went from about .75 Gb to 5.8Gb.
      Thx! 81%

    • CosmicFreak8 says:

      Darko
      I am not tech minded in the least, so bear with me. I have an iphone 4. If I perform a backup, will that give me the latest version (6.0)? I do not want this. I still want 5.1.1.
      Thanks for any help

      • GIuliano says:

        stich 5.1.1 firmware with shsh blobs and then download and run tiny umbrella them open itunes and shitft+left click with windows or alt+leftclick mac and select the firmware with the numbers.

    • Don says:

      Darko, thanks for the advice. I am about to try it on my iPad. In step 2, you said to “restore” the iPhone and when done, etc. Did you mean to first “reset” the device by erasing all content and settings?

    • Kelli says:

      Despite my initial skepticism, Darko’s method worked for me like a charm and shrank my Other Capacity from 2.2 MB to .87 MB. All else restored without issue. Thanks!

    • todd says:

      alas. this did NOT work for me :(

    • Allie says:

      WOW!! worked like a charm!! it went from 6.55GB to 493.4MB!! thanks so much!! nothing else was working, only increasing ‘Other’.. Thanks :)

    • Ghermiah says:

      Tried this and it worked. Shrunk my “Other” category from over 5 GB to just over 1 GB. Thanks!

    • jen H says:

      best advice ever for this issue. I tried everything else, and finally found this comment. thanks again. went from 3.44GB down to 1.26GB big difference on a 16GB phone. :D

  9. Vince says:

    excellent!!!!! took my ipad from 8GB to 0.73gb! NICEEEEE!

  10. Ryan says:

    Darko – Common sense wins out. Other solutions did not work, only increase “other” file. Your solution reduced from 9GB down to 0.42GB. I finally got my phone back!!

  11. dhb says:

    great! went from 10.2 gig to 1.6 with hard reboot.

    thx much

  12. JCS says:

    I am in the process of trying the method outlined by Darko. I tried checking and unchecking the “Open iTunes” to no avail, I tried rebooting the phone and restarting iTunes to no avail.

    The current summary is showing 9.1GB in “Other” and I can’t take pictures or update apps or anything because it is showing that it is 1.something over.

    • JCS says:

      Following the first step I backed up the iPhone 4GS to my computer. As soon as that had finished it showed the “Other” size as .94GB. I don’t know if it had to do with taking it off iCloud autobackup or what, but it doesn’t appear that I need to do a full restore at this time.

      Many thanks to everyone that has submitted an idea for this problem. Even though it took a few tries to get the desired results it is wayyyy better than having an iPhone that is severely limited in capability!

  13. Lisa says:

    I too did the method by Darko and although my nicely restored phone did have the other amount reduced down to 0.45 GB, I can’t get any of my old settings back and now need to spend hours redoing everything. I did backup my phone before completing the process but when I selected set as new phone, it’s no longer giving me access to any of the old backups. When you first plug the phone back in, it immediately begins syncing and backing up.

  14. Tee says:

    Mine went from 6.7GB to 1.2 GB after reboot. Super thanks!

  15. Lena says:

    Clearing history, cookies and data in Safari will free up “other” space. Settings>Safari. Took off just a bit for me but then again I don’t use safari a lot.

  16. Lindsey says:

    So you have to restore your phone to factory settings?

  17. Skylor says:

    Thank you so much! That was pissing me off

  18. Sandra says:

    I need to thank you very much Darko. This sucked 6gb of space and now it’s less than a gig. So I got to bed a bit later than expected.

  19. chris. just chris. says:

    funny, the “other” problem happened for me AFTER i had restored my phone

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