Messed with my "private" (hidden) folder in attempt to save HD space

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by johnpc, Nov 18, 2010.

  1. johnpc macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2010
    #1
    I ran an application called Disk Utility X which showed me that I had a folder called private that took up 9.9 GB of my hard drive. I knew I had not put it there, and it wasn't in a libraries folder or anything, so I kinda assumed it wasa virus and deleted it. Then my whole computer stopped working, but I was able to boot in single user mode and return the files from my trash back to where they belong. The computer started working again.

    However, I ran disk utility x again, and noticed that the private folder now takes up 14.3 GB. The computer works again, but somehow at the cost of 5GB storage space.

    Any ideas why this happened?
     
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #2
    If you're not certain what something is, it's not wise to delete it. There are no viruses in the wild that run on current Mac OS X, so don't assume that something is malware.

    Mac Virus/Malware Info
     
  3. johnpc thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2010
    #3
    Yes thankyou and I have clearly learned that lesson..... the hard way.

    but do you have any knowledge of why the extra gigabytage is being taken up? is this normal?
     
  4. snberk103 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2007
    Location:
    An Island in the Salish Sea
    #4
    It's the penalty the OS assesses when someone messes about with the system without knowing what they're doing. seriously.



    OK - not seriously. Google OS X and Private Folder, and something will pop up probably.

    In my experience, people who "optimize" their systems, and add "enhancers" and "system extenders" are the ones who have problems. I used to muck about 'under the hood'. Added all of these slick optimizers, and OS extenders. Never really bothered me that the system was not entirely stable since I had come from a not entirely stable OS to begin with.

    Then I messed it up badly enough I had to reinstall the OS. I also made the decision to leave behind all of those 'haxies'. Haven't had a single kernal panic yet. In at least 2 years. When OS X is left to manage itself, it is seriously stable.

    And when I read (and often help out) people who are having issues - there is almost always an "optimizer" or an "OS extender" (i.e. haxies) on the system.

    To be fair - I have used Monolingual on occasion - but that is the only one. It will save you a fair bit of HD space, but don't get fancy with it. Let it do it's work with the defaults and it will work fine.
     
  5. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #5
    Definitely, you deleted OS specific objects and now that OS is not functioning.

    Back up your home folder, and reinstall OSX.
     
  6. mulo macrumors 68020

    mulo

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2010
    Location:
    Behind you
    #6
    should save a link for this

    my /private folder is 9.4gb base 2

    quit trying to slim your system down, buy a larger hard drive.
     
  7. gnasher729 macrumors P6

    gnasher729

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2005
    #7
    Toshiba 1 TB 2.5" hard drive = £74.98.
    9.4 GiB = 76 pence.
     
  8. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #8
    /private/var/vm holds your swap files, and your sleepimage file. That will account for a lot of the allocation.
     

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