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I am still new to Blender (less than 1 year), and have read this post indicating that Blender sometimes creates large cache files.

The user - and thread - are regarding the use of Blender on a non-Mac machine. I have a Mac computer, and I immediately wondered if Blender had been creating large cache files on my computer over the past year I've been using it. It's generally a thing that creative apps don't really tell you until you find out at your own expense (cf Photoshop, Premiere Pro, After Effects...)

So, does Blender create cache files, and if it does, where are they located in my system?

Is there a limit to the size of these files or total size of the folder that I can define?

Also, is there a way to purge these files from the GUI, and what kind of outcome / impact will purging these files have on my current workflow? (will I lose baked physics, etc)?

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The cache files that you are probably referring to are BVH cache files created during rendering with Cycles render engine, if the Cache BVH option as been activated for the current file.

Unless you specifically activated this option Blender should not be storing those to disk. I don't think you have to worry too much though, as far as I know it has been removed from Blender 2.77+, so if you are running the latest version it may not even be available since recent optimizations have made it obsolete, I think. The setting could be found under the Properties Window > Render Tab > Performance Panel > Final Render > Cache BVH.

Under Windows, if running the Zipped standalone Blender version these files end up in Blender/2.##/Cache folder I think, for standard system installations they probably end up in Blender's user preferences folder under AppData in the current user's profile folder. I have no idea where these may end up in MacOS, but guessing from Windows location they will probably be stored in your user profile folder too, right next to where your user Blender preferences are stored.

Other than that, the only cache files that Blender stores are physics, simulation and mesh caches that result from baking fluids or other mesh deformation data, but these are explicitly created by the user and require manually configuring paths through the Blender UI, so you will like know where they are stored. Most often they sit right by the side of the corresponding Blender file, and are regarded as user content, not garbage.

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    $\begingroup$ I think you should mention that this setting is only in 2.77 before you mention where this setting can be found, otherwise they will be looking for a setting that doesn't exist as this setting has now been removed. $\endgroup$ – Ray Mairlot Apr 12 '16 at 2:39
  • $\begingroup$ Good point, edited to reflect that $\endgroup$ – Duarte Farrajota Ramos Apr 12 '16 at 2:43

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