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How to Get Rid of Localization Files

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20 / 10 / 2017

How to Get Rid of Localization Files

When you’re running low on disk space, every megabyte counts. If you’ve already removed everything you could but still need more disk space, use this trick: free up extra storage space by removing localization files.

What are Localization Files?

Most of the applications on your Mac are developed for different regions of the world. Usually, applications come with different languages pre-installed (known as language packs), so that the application is displayed in the user’s native language. Language packs consist of localization files, which are created to run applications in different languages.

How it works

A user generally needs only one language for the app’s interface, sometimes two or three (e.g., English and French or English and Spanish). A user who runs applications both in English and French typically will never need Japanese or Arabic language packs. Removing the localization files for these unused languages won’t affect the application’s performance, and it will regain some space.

How to remove localization files

There are two ways to do this: manually or automatically using MacKeeper.

To remove localization files manually, you’ll need to do these steps each time for each application.

1. Open the Applications folder and select the application’s localization files you want to remove. Let’s use Skype as an example. 

2. Control-click the app’s name and select Show Package Contents.

3. Open the Resources folder and look for folders ending with .lproj — they contain localization files for the languages corresponding to the folder’s name. It means English en.lproj contains language files for English, fi.lproj contains files for Finnish, etc.

4. Select the language folders you’d like to remove and move them to the Trash. You can also use the search bar in the top right corner to select all the .lproj folders.

Note: After you remove the .lproj folder of the selected language, you won’t be able to see the app’s interface in this language. If you ever need this language in the future, you’ll have to reinstall the application or reinstall macOS if it’s a built-in app. Be careful with language files.

Removing localization files automatically with MacKeeper is faster and easier. Here’s what you need to do:

1. Open MacKeeper and select the Fast Cleanup tool.

2. Click Start Scan.

3. After the scan has completed, click View Result on Languages Cutter. You’ll see the list of applications containing the installed language packs.

4. By default, MacKeeper unchecks your system language and selects all the rest to be deleted. If the list of selected items looks correct, click Remove. If you need to display your app’s interface in several languages, group the list of languages together by clicking the flag icon on the Group By button.

If you choose French, for example, MacKeeper will leave the French language packs for all the applications listed. Once you’re done with selecting languages, click Remove to delete the selected language packs.

Note: MacKeeper doesn’t scan system applications and won’t remove anything requiring a macOS reinstallation.

That’s it. After removing localization files, you will have some extra free space. How much extra space depends on how many third-party apps you have installed on your Mac. One way or another, you will free up more space for more important files.