Deleted GB's of files, but space available hasn't increased. Why and what can I do?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Bruce Lee, Nov 29, 2009.

  1. Bruce Lee macrumors newbie

    Sep 23, 2009
    I'm on a PowerBook G4, that has a 74.5GB and after filling it up to full capacity I decided to move and delete the bulk of my files.
    Must have taken off about 20GB worth, but after emptying the recycling bin and restarting my computer the room available is the same 300MB as it was before.

    What do i need to do for the computer to recognize that i have more room now, do i have to do something in disk utility?
  2. miles01110 macrumors Core


    Jul 24, 2006
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    It might just take a little while to update the free space remaining. If you emptied the Trash and actually removed 20 GB worth of files, you shouldn't have anything to worry about.
  3. DewGuy1999 macrumors 68040


    Jan 25, 2009
    Is the PowerBook running Leopard. If so, the daily/weekly/monthly scripts get run automatically. If the PowerBook is running Tiger or earlier and gets shut down at night the daily/weekly/monthly scripts don't get run. If the scripts haven't been running automatically, manually running the scripts might free up some space.

    P.S. On a Mac it's the Trash not the Recycle Bin.;)
  4. Makosuke macrumors 603

    Aug 15, 2001
    The Cool Part of CA, USA
    Since the OP has already restarted, the Finder not updating the free space number isn't the issue. Though if you put them in the trash and selected "empty trash" those files should definitely be gone and you should definitely have more free space now.

    Same goes for running the Periodic scripts--they will free up a little space, but don't explain why 20GB of removed files wouldn't result in 20GB of free space.

    Two possibilites I can think of:

    1) Have you opened the trash to make sure it actually emptied properly? There are situations where you can have trouble deleting files due to permission or activity status. If this is the case they'll still be sitting in your trash can, though, so you can just open it to check.

    2) Are you running FileVault? If so, then deleting files won't actually reduce the space used on the hard drive until your protected home folder gets re-sized. I thought that happened on shutdown, but that might have been only 10.5--are you running 10.4 or earlier?
  5. cderalow macrumors 6502


    I would assume on a powerbook g4, that he's running 10.3, or at most 10.4.

    10.5 would take up 1/8th of his drive with just the OS, and 10.6 won't even run on it.

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