Issue I have an external hard drive formatted as NTFS with a single partition, for which, when I check for properties of disk space it shows, 450 GB used and 6 GB free. If I try to write a 7 GB file, it throws up an insufficient drive space error as expected. But when I say do a select all and check the utilized space I see 350 GB, the same number (350GB) is reported by several disk space usage analyzer tool (*nix CLI, Disk Space Analyzer, windirstat). All report 350 GB used.

Things I have tried
Have ensured all hidden files are visible
Have emptied/deleted all .Trash/$RecycleBin/.fsevent folder. Double check for presence of any other hidden file like pagefile.sys/hiberfile.sys
Repeated the above behavior of disk space utilization reporting (both via properties/and via summation of folder utilization) on Mac, Linux and Windows, all leading to the same number, 450GB & 350 GB respectively.
I can’t find a way to recover that 100 GB of disk space without formatting.

What had happened prior to this discrepancy: I had a 100 GB folder say “ABC” which I was deleting, during the delete the system hung, and I did a cold reboot. Post reboot, I could neither find the folder ABC in the file manager, nor could I see the disk utilization go down from 450GB to 350 GB. This was on Mac using fuse & ntfs-3g for write access.

Looking for a way to resolve this without formatting.

  • Did you check the HDD for bad sectors? Also, did you use some kind of encryption for protecting that 100GB? – Pranav Jituri Mar 19 '14 at 10:58
  • It sounds to me like you should run a volume check & repair program -- which will probably require connecting the drive to a Windows computer, since most Mac check & repair programs don't deal with NTFS (or if they do, probably won't do the best job). – Gordon Davisson Mar 19 '14 at 14:29

I'd try to eliminate the likely variables by connecting this drive to a Windows PC and see what that reports. I don't know how well the disk utilities for Fuse are (and hope I never have to know) but a Windows box should tell you what the truth should be. I'd also run any repairs from a Windows box as well.


I was able to solve it by running a disk scan [say chkdsk] and that dumped the lost files in found.000 and deleting them, made it report the right disk space

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