A little housework

“It keeps telling me I’ve run out of space, but I’ve deleted loads of stuff!”

That was the cry of one of our teachers when she brought her laptop to me today. The machine had other issues too, but top of her complaints list was not being able to save new documents due to a supposed lack of disk space. This was perfectly feasible; we have quotas on staff Documents folders since they are synchronised to the server storage, and we’ve been stung before by people ripping their entire CD collection via iTunes on a weekend and then ravaging the server when their laptop synchronises on Monday morning.

After a quick check, I informed the teacher that, yes, she was using almost all of her quota. After a few more insistent retellings of how much she’d deleted, I ran a quick check on the size of each subfolder to narrow down where the space was being eaten up.

I quickly found it.

In the Recycle Bin.

The Recycle Bin had not been emptied in 18 months, and accounted for more than half her quota usage.

I gently explained, to a very embarrassed face, that the Recycle Bin is not like the actual recycling at home that is taken away by the council every fortnight. You have to empty it yourself.

About The Angry Technician

The Angry Technician is an experienced IT professional in the UK education sector. Normally found in various states of annoyance on his blog. All views are those of his imaginary pet dog, Howard.

3 responses to “A little housework”

  1. Gi says :

    Had a very similar problem last week – the Recycle Bin contained a 3GB .tmp file that nobody knew anything about…

    Oh well…

    At least she was embarrassed!

  2. MarkP says :

    We used to have this problem at the office where I was the network admin. Fixed it by setting a policy that ran a powershell script that recycle bins are emptied on log off. Unfixed it the next day when the senior partner of the firm came in demanding all of his “temporary storage” be replaced. Turns out his recycle bin was over 40 GB in size and was his catch-all location for the last 5 years since the network had been installed.