iMovie Says Not Enough Disk Space on Mac: How to Fix It?

The “not enough disk space” error message in iMovie indicates that your Mac’s storage space is running low and the application cannot execute the intended action, such as importing a video file or starting a new project.

Hi, my name is Nancy, and I have been using iMovie for several years. During this time, I’ve encountered various challenges with the software and had to implement several troubleshooting measures to ensure that it runs smoothly.

In today’s article, I’ll provide you with the solutions to the “not enough disk space” error message. You’ll also learn some tips for cleaning up the storage space on iMovie and on your Mac.

Key Takeaways

  • You can reduce the storage space on iMovie by deleting old projects, library events, and render files.
  • Free up space on your computer by transferring your iMovie project files to an external hard drive.
  • Check if your Mac’s storage space is running low and remove any unwanted Applications, Documents and media files. 

What Does “Not enough disk space” on iMovie Mean?

The “Not enough disk space” on iMovie message can pop up when you are attempting to save a project or create a new one. This is a warning sign that your computer’s hard drive or iMovie’s storage does not have enough free disk space to support the software’s usage.

How Much Disk Space Does iMovie Need?

To use iMovie you must have a minimum of 3.5GB disk space available on your Mac. 

This storage space is required to accommodate the media files such as video clips, audio files, and images that are used in creating your video, and also the render files that are generated during the editing process.

How to Fix Disk Space Error on iMovie?

Here are the easiest ways to fix the disk space error on iMovie.

1. Delete Outdated iMovie Projects

When too many projects are saved in iMovie, it can result in insufficient storage space for a new project to be created. If you are happy with your previous iMovie videos and you no longer need to make edits to them, it’s recommended that you delete outdated projects.

Go to the “Projects” tab, select the video you want to delete, click on the three-dot icon, and click “Delete Project”

2. Delete iMovie Library Events

The iMovie Library stores all the video clips, photos, and audio clips that you import to use for your project. These files can be quite large depending on their size and duration, so they can take up a significant amount of space.

Under the “iMovie Library” tab, you can see all of your library events. To delete the entire contents of the Event, right-click on the desired Event and click “Delete Event”.

If you only want to delete certain media files from the library event, you can delete them one by one or highlight a few. Then right-click the files and select “Delete Media from Event”

3. Delete iMovie Render Files

You can quickly free up storage space by deleting the render files. Render files in iMovie are temporary files that are created to aid in the editing process of videos. 

It’s safe to delete them as they don’t affect your original video footage or progress. To delete render files, click on “iMovie” in the Finder tab and go to “Preferences”. Then press the “Delete” button next to “Render Files”.

4. Move iMovie Library Files to an External Drive

Another solution to reduce disk space on your computer is to move your Library Files to an external hard drive. 

Step 1: Open up “Finder” in the Spotlight Search bar. 

Step 2: Select the “Movies” tab and right click on “iMovie Library”

Step 3: Select “Show Package Contents” and you can see all of your iMovie projects here. 

Step 4: Then you can simply drag and drop your iMovie projects into an external hard drive.

Bonus: Optimize the Disk Space on Your Mac

When your Mac is running low on disk space it can slow down your computer’s performance. By regularly cleaning up and managing your storage, you can ensure that your Mac runs smoothly and stays up to date with the latest software.

Tip 1: Check the Storage Usage

To check the storage usage of your Mac, go to the Apple icon at the top left corner of your screen, click “About This Mac” and then “Storage”

You can see an overview of the categories that are taking up the most space and the amount of space available on your Mac. Click the “Manage” button to see the breakdown of the used storage space by the Applications, Documents, Pictures, and more.

Tip 2: Clean Mac Disk to Free up More Space

Once you have identified the categories that are consuming the most storage space, you can begin to declutter your disk space. 

The “Applications” and “Documents” folders tend to occupy a considerable portion of the storage space, so you will want to delete the outdated apps and files that are no longer needed.

The “Downloads” folder can accumulate large amounts of files that you have downloaded from multiple sources. To delete the files, open the “Downloads” folder, right-click on the files and select “Move to Trash”.

After deleting all of the unwanted files from your computer, the files will still remain in the “Trash” bin. To completely remove the applications and files from the “Trash”, you’ll need to select the option to “Delete Immediately” or “Empty Trash”.

Tip: You can also use a Mac cleaner app to free up more disk space more efficiently.


Here are the answers to the most commonly asked questions about resolving disk space errors in iMovie.

How Do I Save a File on iMovie When There Is Not Enough Storage?

If you wish to continue using iMovie efficiently, it is crucial to address the storage issue first. Once you have freed up some disk space on your computer, you should be able to save an iMovie project without any issues.

Is There a File Size Limit for iMovie?

No, there isn’t a file size limit when you are making a video on iMovie. The maximum length for an iMovie project is limited only by the available space on the storage device.

Final Thoughts

The disclaimer message “Not enough disk space” on iMovie simply means what it says. It is essential to clear disk space to prevent your computer from slowing down, freezing, or crashing.

I hope that the tips provided above will help you free up sufficient storage space and enhance your experience using iMovie. Give it a try and I’m confident that you will be satisfied with the results.

Let us know in the comments below if you have any other tips to free up disk space.

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