How do I reclaim the 4 GB of unused space on my powerbook? Filevault isn't cooperating.
January 1, 2005 6:01 PM   Subscribe

I've deleted 4 gigs (after having maybe 5 available on an 80 gig HD) from my powerbook, and now after restart I have only 400 MEGS available. I've repaired permissions, run all the cron tasks, etc. and still no go; I assume filevault is eating up the extra space, but no amount of logging out / shutting down / restarting brings up the Filevault "reclaim unused space?" dialogue. What do I do?

I ran every task possible in cocktail, and still no change (well, maybe 10 megs from the logs, but that's it). I don't know how to force the system to reclaim the space. I tried to turn filevault OFF but it said I didn't have enough free space available to turn it off. Help me!
posted by luriete to Computers & Internet (8 answers total)
Did you try Apple's discussions boards?

(This is not meant to be a snarky response; a lot of people don't know they're there since they're hidden in the navigation somewhat. And Filevault users are a fairly small subset of OS X users, so that might be the best place to find the people who have put it through the paces.)
posted by bcwinters at 6:12 PM on January 1, 2005

If you have multiple user accounts, you have to empty the trash separately in each one. That might help.
posted by cillit bang at 6:13 PM on January 1, 2005

Response by poster: Just the one account. I think Filevault is doing it but I don't know how to turn it off or reclaim the space. Thanks for the heads up on the discussion board, I'll check that out.
posted by luriete at 6:20 PM on January 1, 2005

You might have a number of invisible DS_Store files on your hard drive that can be blamed. Do a search with the Finder for DS_Store files and set the "visibility" option to "visible and invisible" and see what pops up. Delete all that you find. They'll be recreated as needed.

Another thing you can do to clear up space is to run Delocalizer. It'll remove all the localized OS files. I saved 800MB of space on one of my machines by running this.

Be sure to quit all apps before trying either of these.
posted by glyphlet at 8:15 PM on January 1, 2005

Do you have another account on the system (this is an excellent idea for many reasons)? I'd login to that account and use either the Terminal command "sudo du -xk / | sort" or OmniDiskSweeper (they're functionally equivalent - it's just a question of your command-line comfort-level) to see where most of your space has gone.

If it is FileVault's usual memory leaks one way to trigger the reclamation prompt might be to delete a bunch of files within your home directory - say Library/Caches/* or Library/Application Support/* - since it appears to be threshold-based.
posted by adamsc at 8:15 PM on January 1, 2005

If you use Photoshop, it used to create invisible scratch files that can accumulate without your knowledge. Read this to see if it helps.
posted by AlexReynolds at 8:39 PM on January 1, 2005

I love Disk Inventory X for finding out where the hell my hard drive space went.
posted by revgeorge at 7:06 AM on January 2, 2005

When this happened to me, it was OpenOffice's fault.
posted by mosch at 8:31 AM on January 2, 2005

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