I got this USB stick with some music on it. I copied the content on my machine. Two days later I wanted to delete the data from the USB drive. The Move to trash option is missing, and if I try to drag and drop this into Trash can it doesn't work. This message pops up

The item “[file name]” can’t be moved to the Trash because it can’t be deleted.

What is causing the issue and how do I resolve it?

I am using a Mac running macOS High Sierra 10.13.6. The filesystem on USB drive is NTFS.

  • What is the version of macOS that you are using? What is the file system on the USB drive? Did you try accessing the USB drive on a different computer and was able to see/delete the files? – Nimesh Neema May 3 '19 at 12:12
  • 1. 10.13.6 2. Windows NT File System (NTFS) 3. I have no other device to run it on it – Catalin Catalin May 3 '19 at 12:15

Your USB drive is formatted with NTFS file system. By default, macOS can only read a drive formatted with NTFS file system. It does not include drivers to write to NTFS filesystem.

To delete (technically writing, i.e. making changes) the files and folders on NTFS formatted drive, you'll need drivers for NTFS to be installed on your Mac.

If you wish to remove all the contents of the USB drive and use it on computers running macOS, Windows and any Linux distribution, it is recommended to format it with ExFAT or MS-DOS (FAT) file system by using Disk Utility app.

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