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Help! For the past year, it seems that enabling the "iCloud Photo Library" feature on my phone causes the entire phone's storage to fill with "System".

I've checked the Storage summary and Photos is currently using 278.2 MB. Scrolling all the way down shows System as using 15.13 GB.

Nothing helps with clearing this storage other than restoring my phone. The second I enable 'iCloud Photo Library' the entire phone's remaining storage begins to fill-up.

Has anyone had a similar experience? Any ideas on how to fix this?


Backstory:
I've contacted Apple, speaking with their managers and developers, but was abandoned by what seems to be an employee who no longer works there. His direct phone number no longer dials-through.

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In Settings > Photos > Turn on Optimize iPhone Storage. This should prevent full resolution photos from being stored on your device and should remove content from local storage when your device fills up.

  • Doesn't work! In fact, that setting does not even display as I have iCloud Photo Library disabled. – Trent Jan 10 '18 at 20:48
  • What happens when you re-enable iCloud Photo Library and enable that setting? – zdub Jan 10 '18 at 20:59
  • Nothing. Still have > 95% of storage categorized as Other, with System at 15.25 GB. – Trent Jan 10 '18 at 21:01
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    Other is generally not photos. Try this: Back up your phone to your Mac (use a password on the backup!). Wipe the phone "Erase all Content and Settings." Restore the phone from the backup you just made. I'll bet a lot of that "Other" is gone. – Steve Chambers Jan 10 '18 at 23:56
  • Correct, that did work; however, I've done that before and the phone fills up again. – Trent Jan 11 '18 at 18:15
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It feels like they collecting your metadata then upload it to their servers if you don’t have a good WiFi connection or only mobile it’s harder to upload so they keep it on your phone if you connect it to iTunes your metadata will be able to upload faster also with the developing new technology of metadata collection there’s probably a huge bottle neck so you have to affect the priority mechanism somehow

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