The new Versions feature in Lion stores old versions of the document I'm working on in case to revert back to some older version of the document. However, how can I delete the version files for a given document?

There're hidden files in the /.DocumentRevisions-V100, but I'm afraid I cannot just simply delete that folder.

  • For the answer to this question in Mavericks, Yosemite, and beyond, read this Q&A or jump straight to Apple Support.
    – duozmo
    Commented Mar 1, 2015 at 17:18

2 Answers 2


If you want to delete old versions from a document directly:

  1. Click besides the document name in the window title to access the version history
  2. Time-machine like view opens, with document history on the right hand side
  3. Clicking on the same menu as in step 1 in a history version will allow you to delete just this version
  4. Option-Clicking will allow you to delete all history versions at once
  • Fantastic, this way can delete individual version
    – kukoo
    Commented Sep 30, 2011 at 0:38
  • Very sweet! And I've been juggling things in the dark. Awesome info.
    – bmike
    Commented Sep 30, 2011 at 14:10
  • How to safe delete versions? How should I assure that after I deleted the versions?—Should I ask that as a separate question?
    – Adam L. S.
    Commented Jun 10, 2012 at 22:35
  • @AdamL.S. please ask a separate question for this
    – nohillside
    Commented Jun 11, 2012 at 5:35

When you trash a document, the system cleans up all of the versions at the same time.

I have been copying that document elsewhere (another drive), deleting the one with history, and then copying it back.

Also, from the app, if you have a Duplicate or Export option in the File menu, that will spawn off an unversioned copy that you can then save.

In practice, it's never been an issue since when I drag a file to export or upload, these Lion versions don't travel with the document - they only take up marginal space on my HD and help me with the history of each document.


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