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I was looking through my computer to clean up some large files and it looks like some large files are on my system storage even though they are in the "Creative Cloud FIles" directory. Why is this?
The creative cloud is keeping a cache of the CC data locally for quick and /or offline access. This is by design.
If you delete a file there, it will be deleted in the cloud and vice versa.
There's no way to disable that? That seems like a massive oversight in design considering I have no intention of working or using those files for a long time.
You can disable syncing.
...or more permanently:
But you may also move the synch directory to some different place...
Click the three vertical points and choose preferences and than files.
Doesn't that just turn off the creative cloud? I'd like to keep using the creative cloud, I just don't want large files to be cached on my system
That turns off syncing files. So files you put in that special directory will not be any more uploaded to the cloud space and files modified or added elsewhere will not be synced to your computer.
The Creative Cloud programs will still be working.