How do I stop iCloud from downloading files to my hard drive? I opened up a folder and it immediately started downloading all contents

Clicking on the X deos not work

  • The (x) button just closes the window, does not stop the process
    – brz0
    Jan 14 '17 at 15:12

No it is not possible to stop automatic downloads or delay it.

iCloud is not a backup system, it is a syncing system, so it downloads whatever data is stored there to each computer and device signed in with the same Apple ID. There is no way to selectively download. It is an all or nothing sync. Apple have shown no interest so far in 'online backup' as you describe it, don't rely on that changing anytime soon.

When your storage on your device is almost full, the system will purge data that you do not use often. It will still be stored inside iCloud.


This is the answer, you just push undownload after the download is finished. https://github.com/Obbut/iCloud-Control/releases

  • How does performing an action after the download is finished help with stopping the process mentioned in the question, which is prior to the folder contents being downloaded in the first place?
    – grg
    Mar 17 '18 at 8:28
  • This is working for removing local files (which is really helpful!). But the files are being downloaded again after some time when iCloud decides that there is enough free space on your device.
    – Dion
    Jul 31 '19 at 18:36

This answer is incorrect. This should help... https://support.apple.com/kb/PH25224?locale=en_US&viewlocale=en_US

  • While this link may answer the question, it is better to include the essential parts of the answer here and provide the link for reference. Link-only answers can become invalid if the linked page changes.
    – grg
    Mar 17 '18 at 8:27
  • And, that is exactly what has happened. :-(
    – zkarj
    Jun 16 '19 at 8:24

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