At some point in the past I was messing around with the battery menu on my 2012 macbook pro running High Sierra to see if I could it to display the estimated time remaining rather than a percentage. Anywho, I created a copy of the file /System/Library/CoreServices/Menu Extras/Battery.menu which I no longer needed, so I trashed it.

Since then I have been unable to move the item from the trash or delete it.

I have tried:

  • deleting normally
  • using the force delete option (option + delete)
  • trying to drag item out of trash (makes a copy, which is deletable)
  • sudo rm -vrf ~/.Trash/Battery.menu (result: Operation not permitted)
  • renaming and moving the file with sudo mv ~/.Trash/Battery.menu (result: Operation not permitted)
  • running the above commands after su in terminal
  • using the root account to try the above
  • booting into single user mode, mounting the file system, using above commands. (result: Operation not permitted)
  • using setfile to try to set the busy attribute to not busy and to unlock the file (though it is not locked) using setfile -a z ~/.Trash/Battery.menu. Result: ERROR: Unexpected Error. (-5000) on file: /Users/myuser/.Trash/Battery.menu
  • repairing permissions, then trying everything again
  • booting into recovery, turning off SIP, and trying to delete again.

Any ideas?

Thanks for your help!

1 Answer 1


I recently had a file I could not delete from Trash. Finally I moved it from the trash back to the desktop, which I have synced to iCloud. Then I was apple to use the Files app on my iphone to delete it.

Another path to pursue: boot to recovery and turn off SIP (until you get the file deleted.)

  • It can't be moved from the trash, only copied. But I will try the second option about turning of SIP!
    – malkazeara
    Jul 2, 2019 at 5:49
  • I tried turning off SIP but sadly I am still unable to delete that file. Thanks for the suggestion though.
    – malkazeara
    Jul 2, 2019 at 12:19

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