OS X: Files Skipping Trash And Deleting Immediately

By | 2011/04/28

You may have seen this in OS X when trying to delete files:

“This item will be deleted immediately. You can’t undo this action.”


Deleting and recreating the .Trash directory will generally solve this.

Here’s a quick guide!

1. Crack open a terminal:

Applications > Utilities > Terminal


2. Next, remove the existing Trash directory if it exists by typing the command as below into the terminal.
Your command prompt may complain of no such file or directory. That’s ok.

$ rmdir -rf ~/.Trash
rmdir: .Trash: No such file or directory

If your trash is not able to be emptied or deleted, you can preface this command with sudo. Take extreme caution in using sudo. You will be prompted for your password:

$ sudo rm -rf ~/.Trash

3. Now, create the directory call .Trash. It needs the ‘dot’ as well as a capital T as below:

$ mkdir ~/.Trash

4. Finally, restart Finder:

Apple Menu > Force Quit > Relaunch Finder


Now your trash should work fine!