Switcher - Understanding the Trash

Discussion in 'General Mac Discussion' started by blodwyn, Aug 27, 2004.

  1. blodwyn macrumors 65816

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    #1
    Hi

    As a recent switcher and ex-Windows user, Windows could be set to a maximum size that the recycle bin would grow to. I haven't found whether my new PB does this or not. Using SmartTrash I'm keeping my Mac HD under control manually, but I'm watching the Trash on my 40G external drive grow to around 9Gb so far.

    My question is: will the Trash continue to grow until I run out of disk space or does Panther 10.3.5 manage the Trash more intelligently, and are there any settings I can change to set things like maximum size of the Trash, permanently delete after 'n' days, or any utilities that automatically deal with it?

    Thanks
     
  2. vraxtus macrumors 65816

    vraxtus

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    #2

    I'm not exactly sure what you want to do with it... If you're trying to free up space, click and hold down on the Trash icon, and select "Empty Trash". That will remove all items in the Trash folder and delete them.
     
  3. kgarner macrumors 68000

    kgarner

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    #3
    There may be some third party stuff. Have you looked at www.macupdate.com or www.versiontracker.com? That would be where I look. As for your other question. The Trash is really more of a storage bin that has the ability to be emptied. Think of it like any other folder. Until the trash is emptied, anything in it is still on your hard drive and the space will continue to shrink until you empty it.
     
  4. SiliconAddict macrumors 603

    SiliconAddict

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    #4

    You can set a defined size the recycle bin can grow to in Windows before it starts removing the oldest items. Its very useful if you are dealing with a smaller hard drive or very large files on a day to day basis.

    [​IMG]

    IMHO if OS X can't do this I'm going to call it a bad design. If nothing else have the default set to 100% of the drive and let the user go from there. :confused:
     
  5. blodwyn thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #5
    With Windows, I could just delete stuff and it would go to the recycle bin. But when the recycle bin reached a certain size, say 10% of the disk space, Windows would start deleting older content to maintain it's maximum size within the set limit. This meant I didn't have to worry about it gradually filling up the hard disk. I was just wondering whether the Mac did anything similar, but it seems not, although I'll try looking around for any utilities that can help.

    Also, the Mac 'all-or-nothing' emptying option is a bit drastic, which is why I like Smart Trash, as it allows me to selectively delete files permanently.

    Thanks for your replies
     
  6. blodwyn thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #6
  7. decksnap macrumors 68040

    decksnap

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    #7
    Hmm. Seems to me you shouldn't put anything in the trash unless you are trying to get rid of it. Why would you let your trash folder grow to a huge size if the stuff you put in there is to be erased anyway? Microsoft's idea seems interesting, but almost useless.
     
  8. wordmunger macrumors 603

    wordmunger

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    #8
    Seems like a good idea to me. It doesn't take much for my trash folder to get ungodly big. Just because Microsoft came up with it doesn't mean it isn't a good idea.
     
  9. decksnap macrumors 68040

    decksnap

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    #9
    That's fine- I'm just saying, why did you put it in the trash if you don't want to delete it? The theory of KEEPING a certain amount of files in the trash only benefits those who accidentally trash things- which even if you do on a Mac is not lost until you empty it- and at the same time wastes a consistent amount of disk space. I just don't understand the idea of having a fixed amount or percentage of my disk space wasted at all times.
     
  10. SiliconAddict macrumors 603

    SiliconAddict

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    #10

    Ditto. How many user might be out there that delete movies, pictures and other misc junk until their hard drive is completely full resulting in some sort of error message. Having user "just know" that they need to empty their bin once in a while is about as intuitive as having user just know they should defrag their PC once every few months. Again not a good design IMHO. Of course YMMV with that opinion. :p
     
  11. SiliconAddict macrumors 603

    SiliconAddict

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    #11
    Then why have a recycle bin at all? The only use for it is to recover files that you need back and I'm willing to bet you don't need a few years worth of data to be recoverable. You've heard the term burning both ends of the candle right? In this case you are eating both ends of the candle with the end result of having a filled hard drive. Better that you can specify that you want the recycle bin to use 0%-100% of the drive and let the user make the choice what he or she wants to save. Apple's method is...er...somewhat primitive.

    Then again MS's is kinda flaky as well. I've seen weird behavior under the 'bin where you delete the a directory with subdirectories in it and when you restore that directory it doesn't restore the subs. Or it restores the subs but only so deep. Or it restores the entire folder structure but leaves out the files in the subs. MS programming at its finest. :(
     
  12. Counterfit macrumors G3

    Counterfit

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    #12
    I'm still trying to figure out how you guys are putting stuff in the Trash and having it take up more space then before... :confused:
     
  13. osprey76 macrumors 6502

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    #13
    I would tend to agree with the "your trash set to use 10% of your hard drive is silly" argument. However, you make an excellent point. I generally empty my trash fairly often. My mother is not nearly as computer savvy and I nearly always find months worth of deleted files in her trash (usually since I was in town last, basically). So, a percentage or time setting for her would make sense. On the other hand, I don't like the idea of the system just deleting files on its own. Having some sort of option to do one or the other would give you both worlds, though.
     
  14. wordmunger macrumors 603

    wordmunger

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    #14
    Make backup. Do more work. Make another backup. put first backup in trash. Repeat.
     
  15. decksnap macrumors 68040

    decksnap

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    #15
    The point of the trash is a failsafe between the 'delete' button and the computer actually designating that space for rewrite. Hit delete, -oops, deleted the wrong one - go get it from the trash. If you have files in the trash that aren't trash- pull them out of the trash! If they're trash, empty the trash! So simple. So easy.
     
  16. quidire macrumors 6502

    quidire

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    #16
    This really isn't that complicated:

    Why do we have a trash bin? In order to allow for us to retrieve files and directories that we may have accidentally deleted. Once the decision is made to delete there is no reason to empty the bin! Circumstances may change, one may yet want to have access to that file someday. There is no functional reason to empty the bin after the file has been examined and determined to be delete-worthy.

    Space is obviously an issue. The computer oughtn't crash because the refuse in the bin has accumulated to the point where temp files and the like cannot be created. There is however a middle ground.

    I agree with Silicon Addict, in that while the behavior of the bin should initially be to store until emptied (current behavior), the user should be able to adjust it to indicate a maximum size that the bin can occupy.

    Should the incoming file (that is being sent to the trash bin) exceed that maximum size that the bin can occupy, then it is deleted entirely (bit bucket, /dev/null etc) should it be smaller it should be moved to the bin, and then should the bin be larger than the maximum alloted to it, files would be deleted in order of age (oldest first) to shrink it back to an appropriate size.

    This setup starts out safe (the computer never deleting anything, default behavior is the same as status quo) and can be set up to provide the greatest structural utility.

    -RS
     
  17. kgarner macrumors 68000

    kgarner

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    #17
    I think it would be great if OS X implemented this feature from Windows, but maybe make it time based. I don't particularly care how big the Trash Can gets, but I like how Mail will delete emials in the Deleted Items folder that are X days old. For me, it makes more sense to say if I haven't needed if X days/weeks/months then I really don't need it. Both options would be a welcome addition. I may even check out some of these utilities.
     
  18. decksnap macrumors 68040

    decksnap

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  19. emw macrumors G4

    emw

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    Aug 2, 2004
    #19
    While there may be some debate as to if people should use these or just simply delete files when they want to delete them, a quick look at these tools seems to indicate some nice features.

    The 2nd one (Freaky trash) has a nice feature that you can set up multiple trash bins with apparently different settings. I don't know if each could have a different hot-key (Command-Option-something) or a contextual menu setting to choose the bin you want, but that would be slick.

    I'll have to download and find out...
     
  20. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

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    #20
    Bad design? I fail to see why you would put things in the Recycle Bin if you don't intend to delete them. I would never put things into the Recycle Bin if I meant for them to be there and would empty it immediately. Still, with the confirmation dialog turned off, it would ask me if I wanted to delete them. That's bad design.
     
  21. blodwyn thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #21
    Wow, didn't mean to start a religious war.....

    I agree that when I delete something, I intend to delete it (duh).
    There have been times when I have wanted to recover something from the Recycle Bin/ Trash, cause I'm a human being that makes mistakes sometimes. I guess I'm not alone otherwise the Trash wouldn't exist as a feature.

    I'm doing some tinkering with Garage Band, recording some guitar stuff, and audio recordings take up a lot of space if you do multiple takes. This means the Trash grows quite quickly. I can put up with emptying it manually, but it would be good (for me) if it could be automated in some way.

    Having the option to set rules for automatic Trash maintenance would be great. Maybe not everyone would need or use this facility, but I would.

    I'm lovin my Mac though, and will not be buying another PC
     
  22. rueyeet macrumors 65816

    rueyeet

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    Jun 10, 2003
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    MD
    #22
    Actually, the part I like about the Recycle Bin in Windows is that you can turn it off (the "Do not move files to the Recycle Bin" check box in the earlier screen shot). In several years of using it that way, I have yet to delete something I didn't mean to.

    As for OS X's Trash, I treat it the same way I do my non-personal Outlook folders: periodically scan for anything I should keep and save it, and delete the rest. And that's when I don't simply empty the Trash the second I put something in it.

    In any case, reclaiming the space taken up by trashed files is as simple as making it a part of your routine to check through and empty your trash every so often. It's not like takes some huge amount of discipline. I'd personally prefer control over the process than having something auto-trashed because I forgot to look in there in time.

    I do wonder if a quick AppleScript may be capable of auto-emptying the Trash, say on logout, or once a day, or whatever. I'm not an AppleScript expert, though.
     
  23. kant macrumors 6502

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    Jul 22, 2004
    #23
    I agree with you on this.

    I guess those who don't have never deleted something and realized two days later that they really did need that file. *shrug*
     
  24. 7on macrumors 601

    7on

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    #24
    hmmm, it wouldn't be too hard... the Trash is actually a folder in ~/.Trash

    Maybe a terminal command to empty the contents of ~/.Trash and set it up on login or as a cron script that runs once a day or something.
     
  25. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

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    #25
    I think it would be fairly simple to clean out the Trash periodically automatically. The shell script would be simple and an AppleScript to make it run periodically shouldn't be too difficult either. I'll have to think about it.

    I wouldn't be so fervent about not putting things in the Trash/Recycle Bin but I've managed servers and user machines where they put things in temporary holding spots like those and then, the server fills up and they're the first ones to scream "I can't send e-mail! I can't login to the server! My machine is slow!" :D
     

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