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Something funky happened on one of my external drives and now whenever I plug it in 2 files show up in my Trash. If I empty the Trash via Finder, nothing happens. Ditto for the Option+Empty Trash method.

Listing them via Terminal shows them as there

$ sudo ls .Trashes/501
¶_|íìê<-.b?†            æâù©ìë—‡.*?§

But attempting to rm them or get any information about them shows them as not there

$ sudo ls -F .Trashes/501/
ls: ¶_|íìê<-.b\032†: No such file or directory
ls: æâù©ìë—‡.*\026§: No such file or directory

$ sudo rm .Trashes/501/*
rm: .Trashes/501/¶_|íìê<-.b\032†: No such file or directory
rm: .Trashes/501/æâù©ìë—‡.*\026§: No such file or directory

Any thoughts? I've never seen anything like this.

Thanks in advance!

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Have you tried rm -r .Trashes/501? – Daniel Beck Dec 6 '10 at 15:10
I'm leery of doing that because I don't really know what the directory is for. Is it not special in anyway? – Tim Visher Dec 7 '10 at 13:35
As it's stated in 英律功's answer, OS X will create it the next time you delete some files from the external drive via Finder. (I've done this few times) – koiyu Dec 14 '10 at 17:18
up vote 2 down vote accepted


sudo rm -rf .Trashes

The directory will be recreated on the external by OS X as needed.


Plug the drive into something with a different OS and zap it there.

If both of these fail, time to start checking filesystems and drive sectors...

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How would one go about doing that? Both of those failed. ^_^ – Tim Visher Jan 12 '11 at 15:31

Try running a filesystem repair. Run Disk Utility -> select the volume in the sidebar -> First Aid tab -> Repair Disk button.

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That did nothing. – Tim Visher Dec 7 '10 at 13:42

if not lucky with deleting them by the aforementioned steps, then restore the folders to some place on your disk e.g. your Desktop and there delete them via

sudo rm -rf \Path\to\Folder

this worked for me, but not inside the Trash folder itself

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