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Model A1419 / EMC 3070 / Mid 2017 / 3.4, 3.5 or 3.8 GHz Core i5 or 4.2 GHz Core i7 Kaby Lake Processor (ID iMac18,3) / Retina 5K display. Refer to the older iMac Intel 27" Retina 5K Display (Late 2014 & 2015) guides as the system is very similar.

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Huge "APFS Volume VM" - How Can I Resize?

I took out an old 240GB SanDisk SSD to use in an enclosure as my Time Machine backup. I reformatted to APFS and wow!

The “APFS Volume VM” is 17.2GB! No success making it smaller.

Suggestions and ideas please.

Thank You,


/dev/disk4 (external, physical):

   #:                       TYPE NAME                    SIZE       IDENTIFIER

   0:      GUID_partition_scheme                        *240.1 GB   disk4

   1:                        EFI EFI                     209.7 MB   disk4s1

   2:                 Apple_APFS Container disk5         239.8 GB   disk4s2

/dev/disk5 (synthesized):

   #:                       TYPE NAME                    SIZE       IDENTIFIER

   0:      APFS Container Scheme -                      +239.8 GB   disk5

                                 Physical Store disk4s2

   1:                APFS Volume Preboot                 20.5 KB    disk5s2

   2:                APFS Volume Recovery                20.5 KB    disk5s3

   3:                APFS Volume VM                      17.2 GB    disk5s4

   4:                APFS Volume 240GB SSD               839.7 KB   disk5s1

Answer this question I have this problem too

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Did you have this setup as a Fusion Drive?

You appear to have quite a few volumes which you need to delete.


Dan. You're incredible. Your plethora of responses makes iFixit. They'd be nuts not to hire you.

It wasn't a Fusion Drive. I installed my old MacBook Air blade into my iMac. That's now the boot drive. What you're seeing is from the backup SSD I was using to backup my Documents Folder on the new 1TB SSD I put in place of the old cruddy 1TB HDD. I have no idea how the backup SSD got so complicated. I pretty much gave up and fixed the problem by doing a hard wipe back to its original 240GB state. No more containers, volumes, etc.

Yet, the backup SSD is still filling up! But not quite as bad. This time only 13GB instead of the 17.2GB with what I can only assume to be Time Machine Backups.

So. How can I stop Time Machine from backing up to my system because I have a Time Capsule! I thought everything would just go onto the Time Capsule. Doesn't that make more sense or is this a backup of a backup on my external backup SSD?

Thank you,



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Happy you’ve recovered things. I use TimeMachine and I haven’t seen that much being held on my system.

Thank You for the kind words!

I’m at a point in my life were I have a bit of free time to give, helping others keep their gear working.

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Carl will be eternally grateful.
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