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I had an old user account on this machine that I no longer needed and was taking up a lot of space. I removed it by going to System Preferences > Users & Groups and deleting the user. It took a while, but it seemed to work and the user disappeared from the list.

However, I didn't seem to reclaim any disk space, which I thought was odd. So I checked and the deleted user's folder was still present in /Users.

Since the user was no longer listed in Users & Groups, I tried just manually deleting the user folder from the Finder and then emptying the trash. This worked up until it hit file 103,556, at which point it seemed to get stuck. I let it run overnight for 8+ hours and when I came back to it this morning, it was still sitting at 103,556.

I couldn't cancel the delete operation or anything, so I force-restarted the computer and tried emptying the trash again. Again, it counted up to the same file and then stopped.

Is there any way I can force-empty the trash to get rid of this user account?

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You could try deleting it from the command line (Terminal).

sudo rm -rf ~/.Trash/

Be careful with this one though. This can't be undone if you punch that in wrong.

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