Is it safe to delete the Wifidiagnostics file even though its in private/var/tmp? My understanding was that it's better to leave those folders alone in Catalina but I'm not that experienced a user. In the same folder there's also: configd-pattern.plist, configd-state, configd-store.plist. Are those part of that diagnostic test and therefore can/should be deleted as well or are they network configurations? I found conflicting informantions but they were created at the same time of the other one so it seems to me like its related to that log..but it's mostly the log I'd like to delete, its 350mb, its not a lot but it's also not insignificant.

And one more thing, I read that deleting from private/var/folders is supposedly safe compared to the rest, less so /zz (true??)but still. Now I'm not sure that that info is up to date with Catalina, so could it be unsafe as well? I'm asking about /folders because I want to delete some remnants from Zoom Rooms, terrible app I uninstalled(which seems to have left quite the leftovers..on a sidenote, if you have suggestions whether there's files related to it that would be better deleted I'd appreciate it, but it's a bit OP tbh)

It's under folders/y6/lettersandnumbers/c/us.zoom.ZoomPresence/com.apple.metal which contains 3902 and Intel(R) UHD Graphics 630 212kb as a whole..def not worth any risks but it feels like useless deletable clutter.

Thank you everybody:)

  • So this rambles a bit, but that can be cleaned up with an edit. I understand the idea you want to clean or strictly manage storage allocations. How much space are you looking to harvest in /private and do you have a solid backup and time to reinstall if you delete something that’s in use or hangs the system when a system cached file goes missing? – bmike Jun 15 '20 at 1:08
  • I'm sorry if it's all a bit messy, I did an edit to highlight the paths but it might not be the only issue..my main question is about the file in the question. The respective folder opened when i finished running the diagnostic test and i noticed it's 350mb so i thought away with you, it's just a log. I checked the path first and I realised it's in a path I shouldn't be messing with but how could it be that you can't delete logs.. – Saki Jun 15 '20 at 1:14
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    and no, I have no backup, just got a new pro 16 after retiring my 2007 white Santa Rosa mb. I can see how the zoom files in /folders would be a needless risk, especially if you would say that they won't be a bother(or think..). I only ended up going there after the diagnostic test and having a look around. saw the zoom files in /folder and remembered how i read that that folder can be the exception and be safe(r) – Saki Jun 15 '20 at 1:17
  • No worries - basically, many people go OH NO seeing the complexity and diversity of files here when they look for the first time, so I was hoping to see if you could skip to NO BIG DEAL and not worry about it if it’s not a real problem. I’m so glad you asked - +1 as is. It’s a good thing to know and get some input – bmike Jun 15 '20 at 1:18
  • I get that, the zoom files is more of an ocd thing, I wouldn't have bothered to hunt them down otherwise. I don't really want to harvest a certain amount of space, as I said in the above comment it's all rather fortuitous that I ended up there, altho I'm not that inexperienced to just delete stuff for the sake of it. – Saki Jun 15 '20 at 1:21

It's generally safe to delete items from /tmp (or /private/var/tmp, they're the same thing). Anything that's in the folder is temporary (as the name implies). If you're not doing anything, then the files are more or less left over. Specifically related to the diagnostics file, it's either created by you or another part of the system which requested a network diagnosis. If you didn't create it, it might be set to automatically upload to Apple as a part of their diagnostics & usage.

/private/var/folders stores cache and temporary data for each user (hence the C & T folders within each user). zz is used for the system, and I wouldn't recommend deleting that unless you know exactly what you're doing. Specifically relating to folders/y6/lettersandnumbers/c/us.zoom.ZoomPresence/com.apple.metal, those files are compiled shaders made by macOS for Zoom. They're safe to delete (as long as Zoom isn't open), and they'll just be recreated next time you launch the app.

  • since it was me creating that diagnostic file this time it's reassuring to have confirmation it's safe to delete it, but I'll keep in mind that if another time one just pops up it's gonna take care of itself. And more confirmation about zoom is great too, I have no intention of reinstalling it so it should def be safe. But again, I'll keep it in mind for other instances. I'll wait a while out of curiosity if they really do disappear by themselves, otherwise I'll go ahead with some peace of mind, thank you very much:) – Saki Jun 16 '20 at 20:59

I would say no at this point, don’t mess with /private and instead open a support case if you catch the system not keeping it under 10 GB for a 250 GB disk. Other than swap files which can be controlled by choosing software that’s efficient or periodic restarts, the rest self clean quite well in my experience.

Unless you’re quite experienced, the risk/reward here has been high risk / low reward.

For instance, partial download and staged installers will be cached here, so if you find them and remove them, the system could have issues patching itself as it’s primed to install at restart after confirming a good download. Other things are placed here that speed up the mac greatly - so you just slow down the system as it has to recreate the files you just trashed.

  • I'll def follow the advice of leaving the folder alone in general, I answered mainly in the above comments as you've probably seen already but I do appreciate the advice. for me it's really just about that diagnostic log(WirelessDiagnostics_C02CQ33NMD6M_2020-06-15_01.51.56.tar.gz) most of all, the other files I mentioned in that folder are more of a curiosity. And the Zoom files which arent in /temp but /folders are just another thing whcih I was wondering about. It's an application I deleted already but I can see how that's not a good reason to delete those leftovers, for sure not other files – Saki Jun 15 '20 at 1:30
  • @Saki Since you’re comfortable in terminal - I would run log stats and you’ll see that most diagnostic messages have short time to live, The zoom files, ditch them if you know they’re for an app that’s gone, I suppose that’s the only exception - but again - what’s the total gain you get vs leaving it for 15 days and checking again? That app in particular can go die in a fire on macOS. – bmike Jun 15 '20 at 1:37
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    I actually didn't know that the 350mb log from the diagnostic test would self delete in 15 days, it being in /tmp made me try a restart but I didn't know it was a 15 days thing usually. My knowledge is very sparse as you've probably understood by now. I did know that the var/folders was a sort of protected cache but that's why I was wondering why it was still there and if I should do something about it. I'll wait a couple weeks as you pointed out, I'm in no hurry, and if it's all still there I'll make a more informed decision, thank you! – Saki Jun 15 '20 at 1:52
  • Also - if you come to an answer please post and select your answer - I don’t need any more reputation here and want to vote up good content when I see it. – bmike Jun 15 '20 at 1:53
  • got it, I'll leave it open for a little while out of curiosity and then choose! – Saki Jun 15 '20 at 1:57

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