Disk Utility - Erase Free Space

Discussion in 'macOS' started by CasiLindberg, May 3, 2009.

  1. CasiLindberg macrumors member

    May 20, 2008
    I just ran the Erase Free Space thinking it would help me with a bootcamp issue.

    I had 70Gb free and I stopped it when I noticed i had 30 Gb free left. So I just lost 40 Gb of hard drive space. What happened? is there anyway of recovering it or did I just make a huge mistake.

    Please help

  2. sushi Moderator emeritus


    Jul 19, 2002
  3. CasiLindberg thread starter macrumors member

    May 20, 2008
    Well Im not sure what I was trying to do, but I ran disk utility - Erase Free Space

    Then I stopped it and now I have 40Gb lost

    How do I recover it I found this on the net... Disk Utility accomplishes the erase feature by creating large sparse image files in a preset directory. It then deletes them with the srm tool (secure remove) and an overwrite pattern of your choice. If Disk Utility is interrupted, this sparse image is left on the disk just taking up space. Starting another free space erase session makes another file, instead of cleaning up the previous one. So, as there are no checks in Disk Utility for cleaning up this failed process, so you have to hunt it down manually.

    There are a variety of ways of doing this, but I’ll cut to the chase and give you the answer. The files are created in /var/root/Library/Caches/TemporaryItems and are sequential variations of the name EFTFile1.sparseimage. Simply remove these files (as root) to reclaim your free space and then start the process again to finish the task.

    But I cant find the file name in question
  4. CasiLindberg thread starter macrumors member

    May 20, 2008
    Ok I found the solution

    If somebody else has this problem

    Look in your trash can There shoudl be a file name called temporary files

    inside that file there is a sparseimage file simply empty your trash and the problem is solved
  5. sushi Moderator emeritus


    Jul 19, 2002
    What happens when you shut down, then power up your Mac?

    Any change in the free space?

    Okay good.

    After your shut down/start up cycle, I was going to ask you what you found in the trash.

    Glad to see you found a solution. :)
  6. vahtryn macrumors newbie

    Dec 8, 2005
    I'm having this issue as well. I'm currently running snow leopard and can't figure out where the hell these things are kept

    /var/root/Library]$ ls
    .localized Autosave Information Preferences Scripts

    I have no Caches directory there. My trash is empty yet my disk is still full after a disk utility crash. I also cannot find the sparsefile image by using sudo find / -name \*sparseimage

    here's what I get running this command

    udo find / -type f -size +300000k -exec ls -lh {} \; | awk '{ print $9 ": " $5 }'
    find: /dev/fd/3: Not a directory
    find: /dev/fd/4: Not a directory
    /System/Library/Speech/Voices/Alex.SpeechVoice/Contents/Resources/PCMWave: 382M
    /Users/vahtryn/Downloads/Law: 350M
    /Users/vahtryn/Downloads/snowleopard_10a432_userdvd.dmg: 6.1G
    /Users/vahtryn/lotus_notes851_mac_CZ5S6EN.dmg: 402M

    Where the hell is this data being stored at? I can't for the life of me figure it out.

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