Private Folder using up 45GB of space

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by jynx21, Feb 20, 2010.

  1. jynx21 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2006
    #1
    Hi all

    I need some help - i realised i a big chunk of my hard drive space missing and couldn't find where it had gone. I downloaded Disk Inventory and ran the program. It shows that i have a folder called 'Private' within this are three sub folders:

    Var
    Log
    Asl

    I have searched for all of these and can't find them on my hard drive anywhere. Can anyone tell me what these are, if i can delete them and if so how do i find them.

    Many Thanks in advance
     
  2. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    #2
    The private folder is in the root directory but is hidden. You can access it from the Terminal program. Type 'cd /' and then type 'cd ls' (w/out the single quotes) and you'll see. You'll most likely need to use the sudo command to do anything within /private.

    If none of this makes sense, then I suggest not mucking around as unix gives you plenty of rope to hang yourself without warning if you don't know what you are doing.

    Otherwise, you can use a tool like Cocktail to run the periodic maintenance scripts. That will clean up tmp, logs, and so on so that you get space back again.

    One other thing: most of the space used in /private is probably swap (virtual memory) and/or a sleep image file.
     
  3. jynx21 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2006
    #3
    Thanks for the advice - havemanaged to clear about 30 GB - will run cocktail now.

    :)
     
  4. Tumbleweed666 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2009
    Location:
    Near London, UK.
    #4
    Surely 45GB is outrageous for a sleep image or swap file? I wouldn't have thought either would be more than the size of memory, likely 4GB?
     
  5. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    #5
    The sleepimage will be the size of installed RAM. 8 GB on my system, but that's probably the largest file. Swap files could get pretty large. On my system.

    -rw------T 1 root wheel 8589934592 Feb 12 09:34 sleepimage
    -rw------- 1 root wheel 67108864 Feb 19 12:49 swapfile0
    -rw------- 1 root wheel 67108864 Feb 19 18:51 swapfile1
    -rw------- 1 root wheel 134217728 Feb 19 18:51 swapfile2


    Actually, they aren't really in /private, but in /var/vm. /private has a symbolic link to /var.
     

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