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  #1  
Old 18th April 2012, 01:19 PM
EddyNCFC Offline
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Flash USB Drive cluttered with invisible files

Hello,

I have been encountering an issue with my USB flash drive. Right after being formatted, the USB is entirely empty and all the space is available. However, after putting and deleting a number of files from the drive, the space doesn't seem to made available. After a while I have no alternative but to format it to release the space being used by files that had already previously been moved to the Wastebasket.

This is quite a crippling issue, is there an easy solution to it? Have I been doing things wrong?

Thanks.
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  #2  
Old 18th April 2012, 01:32 PM
Dan Online
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Re: Flash USB Drive cluttered with invisible files

Two possible solutions:

1) While the drive is still attached to the computer, empty the trash.

2) Go into the nautilus edit>preferences>behavior> dialogue and select, "Include a delete command that bypasses the trash." (Or something similar. I don't have time to look it up now so you're on your own from here.) then use the right click method to delete files.
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  #3  
Old 18th April 2012, 05:16 PM
EddyNCFC Offline
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Re: Flash USB Drive cluttered with invisible files

These two work. Using Shift+DEL works too. Doesn't really fix the issues with the wastebasket, but it will do for now.


Thank you!
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  #4  
Old 18th April 2012, 05:57 PM
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For the longest time I've been playing with the idea of having an option in Nautilus to empty the trash on unmounting of removable drives, making it a per-device setting, even (based on device S/N or similar), and there must be an easy way to make the .Trash* folders invisible in FAT file systems, similar to how Mac OS does it...

Alas, since I'm not a coder, but a simple user, I wouldn't know how to implement such a feature in Nautilus, sadly.
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  #5  
Old 18th April 2012, 07:13 PM
george_toolan Offline
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Re: Flash USB Drive cluttered with invisible files

This is a feature and not a bug. Too many people delete their files and later decide they still need them ;-)

If you know what you're doing just use the rm command.
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  #6  
Old 18th April 2012, 08:01 PM
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I know it is, but is also annoying to the point that non technical users will always complaint about "missing drive storage", especially in removable media. Add to that the MIA "delete" shortcut in Gnome-shell, I personally always use shift-del to bypass the trash.
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  #7  
Old 18th April 2012, 09:35 PM
bonedome Offline
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Re: Flash USB Drive cluttered with invisible files

Here's what I've found, if I delete something from a usb stick that file ends up in two places, my wastebasket and in a hidden file on the usb stick called .trash.
If I empty the wastebasket the .trash file contents are also deleted, if I remove the usb before that the files are still in .trash.
Check your usb stick for that pesky hidden file
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  #8  
Old 18th April 2012, 09:55 PM
Gareth Jones Offline
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Re: Flash USB Drive cluttered with invisible files

Quote:
Originally Posted by EddyNCFC View Post
However, after putting and deleting a number of files from the drive, the space doesn't seem to made available. After a while I have no alternative but to format it to release the space being used by files that had already previously been moved to the Wastebasket.
The whole point of the Wastebasket/Trash is so that you can restore removed files. They have to be stored somewhere for this to be possible. "Moving" a file to the Wastebacket is exactly that – moving, not deleting, so the space is still used until you actually empty the trash. See the earlier posts for how to do that, or how to by-pass the Wastebasket completely if you really want to delete a file right now.
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  #9  
Old 18th April 2012, 11:44 PM
EddyNCFC Offline
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Re: Flash USB Drive cluttered with invisible files

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gareth Jones View Post
The whole point of the Wastebasket/Trash is so that you can restore removed files. They have to be stored somewhere for this to be possible. "Moving" a file to the Wastebacket is exactly that – moving, not deleting, so the space is still used until you actually empty the trash. See the earlier posts for how to do that, or how to by-pass the Wastebasket completely if you really want to delete a file right now.
I merely assumed the Wastebasket was a folder of some sorts on my laptop's hard drive, not on my USB Removable media. Hence if I move something from my drive to the Wastebasket, the space should be freed. Surely the sensible thing to do would be to have a "trash" folder somewhere on the computer hard drive, where files could be "moved" and restored later. "Moving" the files to the Wastebasket without "removing" them from the USB drive doesn't sound very useful.

That would mean that the only way to delete files from a USB drive while keeping the possibility to restore those files one day would be to keep the now unusable USB drive somewhere safe just in case. Or keeping everything in the eventuality that it might become useful at some point in the distant future.

But as I said, permanent deleting works for me. I appreciate how difficult it must be to code such things and I can learn to work around this strange feature.
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Old 19th April 2012, 03:45 PM
Gareth Jones Offline
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Re: Flash USB Drive cluttered with invisible files

Quote:
Originally Posted by EddyNCFC View Post
I merely assumed the Wastebasket was a folder of some sorts on my laptop's hard drive, not on my USB Removable media. Hence if I move something from my drive to the Wastebasket, the space should be freed. Surely the sensible thing to do would be to have a "trash" folder somewhere on the computer hard drive, where files could be "moved" and restored later. "Moving" the files to the Wastebasket without "removing" them from the USB drive doesn't sound very useful.
I suppose it isn't obvious where the Wastebasket should store files. Storing them on a local disk would make it impossible to restore files on another machine, and for large files would require a potentially slow copy operation (and actually increase used-space on the local disk for a delete operation on another file-system). Storing them on the original medium means that the space isn't freed, which might naïvely be expected, especially for small media.

For the most common uses of removable media (back-up and transferring files between machines), I'm not even sure that having a Wastebasket makes sense, as everything on the removable drive should already be stored on at least one other file-system unless the user has already chosen to delete it. For archiving, deleting files is rarely an issue. So maybe file managers should just by-pass the Wastebasket completely for removable media by default, despite the risk of removing undelete functionality.

(As an aside, I really dislike the name "Wastebasket"... As a Brit I'd never call the physical rubbish 'trash', but "Wastebasket" and "Recycle Bin" are so forced, and "Rubbish" doesn't really seem to cut it for deleted files, so I'd actually prefer "Trash"...)
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  #11  
Old 19th April 2012, 03:49 PM
Dan Online
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Re: Flash USB Drive cluttered with invisible files

Quote:
... (As an aside, I really dislike the name "Wastebasket"... As a Brit I'd never call the physical rubbish 'trash', but "Wastebasket" and "Recycle Bin" are so forced, and "Rubbish" doesn't really seem to cut it for deleted files, so I'd actually prefer "Trash"...)
Poppycock! <....>


Mornin' Gareth! <....>
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  #12  
Old 19th April 2012, 03:58 PM
Gareth Jones Offline
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Re: Flash USB Drive cluttered with invisible files

Afternoon Dan!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan View Post
Poppycock! <....>
A fine suggestion. I'll file a bug with the FreeDesktop standards people.
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  #13  
Old 19th April 2012, 03:58 PM
bonedome Offline
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Re: Flash USB Drive cluttered with invisible files

Garbage
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  #14  
Old 19th April 2012, 04:41 PM
EddyNCFC Offline
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Re: Flash USB Drive cluttered with invisible files

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gareth Jones View Post
I suppose it isn't obvious where the Wastebasket should store files. Storing them on a local disk would make it impossible to restore files on another machine, and for large files would require a potentially slow copy operation (and actually increase used-space on the local disk for a delete operation on another file-system). Storing them on the original medium means that the space isn't freed, which might naïvely be expected, especially for small media.

For the most common uses of removable media (back-up and transferring files between machines), I'm not even sure that having a Wastebasket makes sense, as everything on the removable drive should already be stored on at least one other file-system unless the user has already chosen to delete it. For archiving, deleting files is rarely an issue. So maybe file managers should just by-pass the Wastebasket completely for removable media by default, despite the risk of removing undelete functionality.

(As an aside, I really dislike the name "Wastebasket"... As a Brit I'd never call the physical rubbish 'trash', but "Wastebasket" and "Recycle Bin" are so forced, and "Rubbish" doesn't really seem to cut it for deleted files, so I'd actually prefer "Trash"...)
These are very good points. Besides, thinking about the Trash recycle garbage wastebasket bin, it is quite difficult to "accidentally" delete files on Fedora, so I suppose it does lose a lot if its purpose. I second the name change
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