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I made a test submission and tried editing the submissions with file uploads on them, unfortunately, editing the submission does not remove the file uploads that were previously submitted, it will remain in the servers. You need to delete the actual submission for the files to be removed in our servers and to free up the upload space.
I would advise that you download the submissions and the file uploads to your local storage, after that you can proceed on deleting the submissions, this is because when you delete a submission it is permanent and irreversible.
Regarding the API, as mentioned, editing the submission won't delete the file uploads, however you can still use API to delete the submissions, you can refer to this guide: http://api.jotform.com/docs/#delete-submission-id. But it would be more convenient to delete the submissions in the Submissions page instead.
I hope that helps.
Thanks for your answer!
This is bad. Jotform itself could be good working database. We could access all submissions data anytime through API or even simple excel reports. Deleting submissions makes this impossible, and forces us to create our local database. Even 1 Tb on gold, wouldn'd solve this, because it will fill up quite quickly for us.
We will be glad to see solution for this in future!
Thank you for sharing your insights on this. I have escalated this to our developers as a feature request. I have noted that users should be allowed to delete the file uploads through API.
It might be also a good addition if this option can be done in the submissions page.
We will update you on this thread when we hear any news.