I'm running 10.6.8 on my Macbook Air. I have been archiving lots of large files to an external drive, but after doing so, my computer doesn't recognize that the files/data are gone. Even after a restart.

I've tried to use iBoost-up to clean things up, and restarted again but my computer acts like I haven't cleared up any space when in fact I have removed close to a dozen gigabytes. I never used Time Machine, the files are archived off my drive. I want the space I freed up to display, but it doesn't!

Does anyone know why?

  • The The free trial of Daisy Disk daisydiskapp.com should show you what large files are taking up space and where they are located.
    – Lee Joramo
    Jul 30, 2014 at 22:18
  • What about the recycle bin? Do I items removed from Hard Drives get stored in the bin?
    – Mackey18
    Jul 30, 2014 at 23:45

3 Answers 3


Since the local snapshots for Time Machine were introduced in Lion, that isn't the cause (which is the cause of this for I'd say 3/4 of the Lion or later people with this issue).

If you delete the file from unix with rm or by emptying the trash in Finder and you don't recover the space, the disk directory is likely corrupt. You should back up any critical files to another drive or USB or cloud service and then boot from the installation DVD or another 10.6 boot drive and run Disk Utility to repair the drive. Based on what happens during the repair we can add steps if needed but that should show any directory damage and potentially offer to repair it.


Deleting file from Finder moves them to the Trash for recovery. They're still on your disks taking up space. So you can either empty the Trash in Finder or use rm from terminal to immediately and permanently delete the files.


Once putting the large files in the trash, use the function 'secure empty trash'. This completely erases the files from your hard drive and there is not way of getting it back. Alternatively, you could get this app form the mac app store called Disk diag. Although it is paid, you can completely erase your items from your hard disk. This will also clean your unused files, like catches and trash completely, and scan your hard disk's space.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .