Mac Basics: Using the Trash To Delete Files

The Trash, also called the Bin, on your Mac is how you delete files. You can also recover files from the Trash, skip the Trash, and set it to automatically delete files after a period of time.

Comments: 6 Responses to “Mac Basics: Using the Trash To Delete Files”

    Michael Ganey
    10 months ago

    Gary, good Trash tips. I recently tried deleting 1.5 GB of files from an external drive. My Mac Mini M1 took 3 days to move all the files to Trash, and 1 full day to delete. Any suggestions for shortening the process?

    10 months ago

    Michael: Perhaps issues with that drive? Is it old? Is is USB 2 or 3?

    Henk
    10 months ago

    Hi Gary, I can’t delete folders in the trash named like ‘2018-03-29-114826’. They are 0 kb and are from Time Machine. They contain also 0kb folders named ‘Macintosh SSD’ and ‘Macintosh HDD’. Computer is iMac 27″ from 2011 s/w 10.13.6 High Sierra.

    10 months ago

    Henk: You have Time Machine files in your Trash? How did they get there? You should never try to manually handle the files in a Time Machine drive. You’ve probably corrupted your Time Machine drive by doing so and will need to erase the driver and start your backup from scratch.

    Michael Ganey
    9 months ago

    Gary, I misspoke in my post above. I was deleting 1.5 TB of files from a USB 3 drive. It literally took days to move the files to the Trash, and than over a day to delete. Any suggestions?

    9 months ago

    Michael: Sorry, no. Not sure why it would take that long for you. Sounds like you would have been better off moving the files you didn’t want to delete somewhere else and then just erasing the drive. Maybe the drive is old and having problems? Also, I wonder if using “Delete Immediately” would have been faster.

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