Disk space eaten up!

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by virtuosity, Jan 1, 2009.

  1. virtuosity macrumors member

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    Jun 12, 2008
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    Manchester, UK
    #1
    Hey!

    Yesterday, I had 60GB free on my main hard drive - last night my computer was overrun with nieces/nephews who all decided to (using another user account) use the Mac for a few hours...

    This morning, I have 400MB free and my Mac is grinding to a halt!!

    I have tried searching for all files > 1GB in size, all files that were created yesterday etc etc - and nothing untowards comes up...

    I think I have tried all of the usual things like emptying trash etc - but I cannot for the life of me see how 60GB could have simply disappeared in 24 hours - it must be something the kids did - but all they said they did was browse the net and take a few photo's / messed about in photo booth... my first thought was that they'd recorded several hours of video - but I can't see anything in there...

    any ideas what else I can do to find out where my disk space has gone!!???

    :confused:
     
  2. poolvibe macrumors newbie

    poolvibe

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2006
    #2
    I'd just kill the dummy account they were on and create a new one. Most likely whatever they did will be reversed. Just a thought..
     
  3. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

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    #3
    Did they get into a torrent program? Some of them create dummy files that take up the amount of HD space that the completed file would contain.
     
  4. firestarter macrumors 603

    firestarter

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    #4
  5. BlueRevolution macrumors 603

    BlueRevolution

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    #5
    The first thing I'd do is to get info on their account's home directory (in /Users) to see how much stuff is there. If you can, deleting and re-creating the account is probably the way to go. In the future, Leopard has this great guest account feature that allows you to create accounts that are simply reset to the defaults after the user has logged out, and where access is strictly limited. No mess!
     
  6. virtuosity thread starter macrumors member

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    Jun 12, 2008
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    #6
    First of all... thanks for all the very prompt and helpful responses...

    To answer...

    1) I tried deleting the dummy user account - didn't need it especially - no difference whatsoever :( i was hopeful of that suggestion thanks

    2) I downloaded omnisweeper, but it doesn't seem very stable??? it keeps giving me errors when i click objects...

    3) Re torrents: i have access to Vuze on my account (which has around 2GB in it's own download folder) but no other accounts have access to this application

    I have managed to find around 17GB of data I didn't need so have my mac back and working again, but still perplexed as to where the 60GB has disappeared to!

    There aren't things like hidden/system files in M$ Windows are there??? Am I doing something really stupid here???
     
  7. firestarter macrumors 603

    firestarter

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    #7
    That's odd. Have you tried it again since you freed some space (nothing runs well with 400MB free!)
    There are hidden/system files. A lot of these will get cleared out when the machine is restarted. Have you done that yet?
     
  8. kolax macrumors G3

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    Mar 20, 2007
  9. virtuosity thread starter macrumors member

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    Jun 12, 2008
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    #9
    yes. re-installed it also. when i run it now, all it does is it starts sizing then crashes on it's own :(

    yes.
     
  10. virtuosity thread starter macrumors member

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    #10
    thanks yes... as above...

    ...but all they said they did was browse the net and take a few photo's / messed about in photo booth... my first thought was that they'd recorded several hours of video - but I can't see anything in there...
     
  11. kolax macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2007
    #11
    Anything they download etc would be in their account, so when you deleted it, whatever they had would be gone.

    Are you absolutely positive that you didn't install something big (i.e. maybe a trial suite of Adobe CS4) or have any incomplete torrents that are huge?
     
  12. firestarter macrumors 603

    firestarter

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    #12
    virtuosity - you're not a software developer are you?

    The only other thing I can think of is that core file creation may have been turned on. Multiple app crashes would quickly burn through disk space.
     
  13. BlueRevolution macrumors 603

    BlueRevolution

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    #13
    Silly question, but have you emptied the trash?
     
  14. virtuosity thread starter macrumors member

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    #14
    absolutely positive - and have deleted ALL my torrents and all the files in the nominated torrent download folder and restarted my iMac just to make sure...

    i checked my free space 31.12 in the morning, and was running at around 59GB - and i haven't installed anything this week (other than omnisweeper tonight) - i'm normally quite anal about installing anything... (paranoid after spending years with pc's!!)
     
  15. virtuosity thread starter macrumors member

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    #15
    silly questions allowed!!!! :D

    I'm sure i'm the one doing something stupid...

    trash is absolutely empty though yes...

    the weird thing is now is that it's up to 26GB free in the last hour or so while i have been away from my mac... something's going on here!!!
     
  16. firestarter macrumors 603

    firestarter

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  17. virtuosity thread starter macrumors member

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    #17
    not a developer no :(

    i was actually wondering whether some "event / error logging" had been inadvertently switched on... not sure if this is possible... but surely it would have appeared in my "filesize" sweep check of the HD???
     
  18. kastenbrust macrumors 68030

    kastenbrust

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    #18
    Are you sure they didn't active time machine and set it to use your own hard drive to back up from?? that would make a carbon copy of all your files on your own hard drive! meaning you had hardly any space left.
     
  19. pinback pro macrumors member

    pinback pro

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    Oct 16, 2008
    #19
    +1 on that!
     
  20. skwij macrumors 6502

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    Belleville, ON, Canada
    #20
    Sounds like it could possibly be a runaway log file.
     
  21. DARKiLLUSiON macrumors 6502

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    Sep 21, 2007
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #21
    that happened to me not long ago with just 4GB left in just a matter of one day :S anyway
    Take a look at the User/.(whatever your login name is) and get info
    let me know what you see at the memory there

    ps: I did the same when something like this happen to me and all the missing spaces are in that user account
    btw that was created for File Vault by default I believe
     
  22. petermcphee macrumors 6502a

    petermcphee

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    Aug 20, 2008
    #22
    Is that an option? I thought Time Machine prevented users from doing that. I mean, what would be the point?
     
  23. virtuosity thread starter macrumors member

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    #23
    i do have Time Machine running and active... but it couldn't possibly do that.....


    ...could it??? :confused:

    i'll try googling for TM user's experiencing similar symptoms in the meantime...
     
  24. firestarter macrumors 603

    firestarter

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    #24
    *sigh*

    Have you rebooted the machine yet?

    There's a whole load of temporary invisible files that will disappear when the machine switches off. Unless you've done this and eliminated that possibility it's difficult to see what could be wrong.
     
  25. virtuosity thread starter macrumors member

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    #25
    yeh sorry - have done several times while checking this issue out...
     

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