"No free space" is wrong. Erase Free Space Interrupted

Discussion in 'macOS' started by Skald, Mar 20, 2009.

  1. Skald macrumors member

    Skald

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2008
    Location:
    California
    #1
    Yesterday I apparently interrupted Disk Utility when it was erasing free space, which was far bigger than the used space on my beloved black Macbook. Apparently the free space, because the program was interrupted, is seen as one honking big file.

    Please help me get the laptop to recognize all the free space.

    This morning, the disk utility tells me that I have zero free space. Verify says I do not need repair. I checked because of all my sudden problems (I am unable to save anything to the laptop, unable to cut-and-paste . . . and unable to erase free space again since there officially isn't any, etc.).

    Trash is empty.

    I tried (based on advice in another thread) to reboot with the installation disk so as to use its disk utility program, but the installation disk menu offers "install" etc. but not (as far as I can tell) just access to its disk utility.

    I plugged in my Timemachine external drive [WD MyBook], but the most recent "save" there has the "restore" button greyed out. That's scary.

    I'm willing to do a complete re-install if necessary, but I hope that one of you has a simpler solution that will simply get my free space back.

    Thank you!
     
  2. AdeFowler macrumors 68020

    AdeFowler

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2004
    Location:
    England
    #2
    Put something (anything) in the trash and empty it… good luck ;)
     
  3. yippy macrumors 68020

    yippy

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2004
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    #3
    If all the free space is a file, there should be a huge file somewhere that you can delete.

    If not, you can access disk utility from the install disks. After step 2 or 3 the utilities menu at the top of the screen becomes accessible and Disk Utility is an option in there.
     
  4. Skald thread starter macrumors member

    Skald

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2008
    Location:
    California
    #4
    Thank you!

    I really appreciate the superfast and excellent advice from both of you.

    I moved a couple of small files to the trash (I couldn't drag anything, so I used Ctrl-click and "move to trash"), then emptied the trash. The disk utility recognized that little space, and is now erasing free space, all 178 GB of it. An elegant, simple solution, one that, I confess, I should have been able to figure out myself, but couldn't.

    I'm on another computer now, as I have learned my lesson about not interrupting the erase process.

    Many thanks!
     

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