Deleting files on a USB Flash Drive doesn't free the space up?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by duncyboy, Apr 15, 2008.

  1. duncyboy macrumors 6502a

    Feb 5, 2008
    Not sure if this is a Leopard bug, a fault with my USB drive or something I'm doing wrong- so please bear with me :)

    I have a 4GB USB Flash Drive from - their own branded one.

    It is formatted as MS-DOS (Fat) and whenever I delete files the empty space doesn't re-appear?

    Say it's completely empty- I add 1GB of files and then delete them, the available space doesn't go back to 4GB. It remains at 3GB although Get Info on the drive shows 4GB total capacity and 0 files?

    Do I have the drive formatted wrong? (Note: I need it to be readable/writeable on my friend's Vista Laptop too, so making it Mac format isn't an option)
    Is this just a Leopard bug?
    Or am I doing something wrong?

    I just Erase using Disk Utility each time but wondered why this happens?

    Thanks for any replies :)
  2. ergdegdeg Moderator emeritus


    Oct 13, 2007
    You also need to empty the trash before ejecting the drive.
  3. duncyboy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Feb 5, 2008
    Ah right- oops :eek:

    Thanks for the speedy reply- you are a gentleman and a scholar.

    Just goes to show I've still got some Windows thinking in my head. XP Pro always used to instantly delete files from it and I just assumed it would be the same on OS X! Oh dear!

    Oh, well, that'll teach me. If I ASSUME I make an ASS out of U and ME both :D
  4. ergdegdeg Moderator emeritus


    Oct 13, 2007
  5. savar macrumors 68000


    Jun 6, 2003
    District of Columbia
    It's definitely not obvious behavior. It would probably make more sense if OS X did it the way that Windows does it, but Apple has always done certain things in a quirky way.
  6. duncyboy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Feb 5, 2008
    Sorry about that. If anyone wants me I'll be taking the foot out of my mouth :)

    I've switched for two weeks and I'm finding that for certain things. The vast majority of operations are better on a Mac but there are some that puzzle me but it's worth it. I s'pose I'll just remember the stock answer: "Because that's the Apple way." Reminds me of Priests saying "God moves in mysterious ways." ;)

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