Deleting files off USB drive deletes files - Doesn't free up space

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by jpod89, Jan 17, 2008.

  1. jpod89 macrumors member

    Nov 26, 2007
    The USB drive I'm using (Kingston DataTraveler 1GB) doesn't free up the space when I delete whatever files are on it. I've formatted it using both an Extended and FAT32 system.

    The actual files seemingly get deleted, but there will still be 300MB (for example) left out of 1GB. I'm finding myself always needing to re-format the thing in order to free up that space.

    Works fine on Windows, but not Macs. Am I doing something wrong? Not deleting it properly? A setting perhaps?
  2. xUKHCx Administrator emeritus


    Jan 15, 2006
    The Kop
    After you have deleted the items you have to empty the trash as the files aren't actually deleted.

    The way i see it this is better than the insta-destroy in windows as you can always get them back out of the trash.
  3. tobefirst macrumors 68040


    Jan 24, 2005
    St. Louis, MO
    It is kind of dumb, to me, that I don't have a choice to just erase those files, though. I must delete ALL files in the trash, whether they reside on my hard drive, any connected flash drives, etc.

    I do realize that there are utilities to "correct" this. Apparently I don't think it is *that* dumb, however, because I haven't installed any of them.
  4. twig macrumors member

    Nov 1, 2007
    To clarify, make sure the USB drive is still mounted when you empty the trash, otherwise the space won't be freed up.

    I have the same drive and one time I found that even though I emptied the trash and apparently freed up the space (finder showed that I had 800+ MB free) I couldn't actually copy any more than 30MB to the drive. Interestingly when i connected the USB drive to a windows machine, I was able to use the full 800MB, so I just copied an 800MB file to the drive, deleted the file, and all of a sudden the space was accessible again when connected to my iMac.
  5. jpod89 thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 26, 2007
    Weird. I'm hoping that doesn't happen to me, I'm way to lazy to hook up my PC (it's sitting in my closet :rolleyes:) just to connect my USB drive for that reason.

    Thanks for the responses though, really helped!
  6. Stitzu macrumors member

    Jan 31, 2006
    There shouldn't be any reason to need to do that though because you should be able to just format the drive with Disk Utility which will completely erase everything so that you can start fresh, and should clear up confusion that Finder might have. ;)
  7. kuwisdelu macrumors 65816

    Jan 13, 2008
    Uhh, as already mentioned, all you need to do is empty the trash while the USB drive is still mounted. That'll free up the space of the deleted files.

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