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  1. #1
    Problems moving large data in 10.4.10

    Member Since
    Jul 17, 2007
    Posts
    6
    Unhappy Problems moving large data in 10.4.10
    I have about 100GB of music in album folders that I am trying to move from one location to another on the same volume and I can't when I select all folders and do an option+drag it says "moving" in the progress bar but underneath it says "preparing to copy" then fails saying there isn't enough space to copy the files...

    This is making me nuts!

    I am new to the mac world and am a convert from windows but I am a systems engineer and very familiar with tech in general. I am thinking I must just be missing something here...

    Can someone clue me in?

    Edit: More in depth, I am trying to move the data from a folder at the root of the system drive to a folder in my user directory.

  2. #2
    MacHeadCase
    Guest
    Welcome to Mac-Forums, sidus.

    Option + drag will make copies, just dragging them will move the folders. I am thinking here that because it is such a huge pile (100GB), the Finder is probably choking on all the data to handle at once: your Mac probably doesn't have enough RAM installed or if you were copying them and there isn't room left on the hard drive, that too could explain the balking.

    Why not try to move folders in smaller increments and see how the system reacts.

  3. #3
    Problems moving large data in 10.4.10

    Member Since
    Jul 17, 2007
    Posts
    6
    Quote Originally Posted by MacHeadCase View Post
    Welcome to Mac-Forums, sidus.

    Option + drag will make copies, just dragging them will move the folders. I am thinking here that because it is such a huge pile (100GB), the Finder is probably choking on all the data to handle at once: your Mac probably doesn't have enough RAM installed or if you were copying them and there isn't room left on the hard drive, that too could explain the balking.

    Why not try to move folders in smaller increments and see how the system reacts.
    If I select all then just drag it copies and every indicator says copy. I know it should try to move but it doesn't, it tries to copy. If I option drag, the progress bar indicator says move, the buffer indicator says preparing to copy.

    OK, I can appreciate that point of view with the incremental move but it seems a bit like a limitation to me. I don't have to do that in Windows... But ok... Like I said, I am new to the Mac and I guess I might have some assumptions as to functionality. I figured if anything it would be easier and faster to do something like this on OS X as opposed to Windows but maybe that's wrong.

    My specs are this: Brand new Gen3 Macbook, 160GB HDD, 1GB RAM

    Just to clarify in case I was at all vague. I am trying to move not copy 1226 folders containing a total of 88GB of data. I have 43GB free on the disk. And I am trying to move the data from one folder to another on the same volume. The only possible weird thing involved is that the destination folder is in my home folder which is encrypted with the included encryption feature in OS X.

  4. #4
    MacHeadCase
    Guest
    It might have something to do because the folder is in root which, according to the Unix permissions, file structure and hierarchy, would be accessible to ALL users on your Mac. You now want that folder to be only in your user directory. I think that is why the folders are being copied, not moved.

    And normally, in the Mac world, holding down the Option key when dragging (you see a green plus button appear as you do so) makes copies and does not move files at all.

    So yes if you have only 43GB of free disk space and the system is trying to copy over 88GB of files, it won't work.

  5. #5
    Problems moving large data in 10.4.10

    Member Since
    Jul 17, 2007
    Posts
    6
    Quote Originally Posted by MacHeadCase View Post
    Welcome to Mac-Forums, sidus.

    Option + drag will make copies, just dragging them will move the folders. I am thinking here that because it is such a huge pile (100GB), the Finder is probably choking on all the data to handle at once: your Mac probably doesn't have enough RAM installed or if you were copying them and there isn't room left on the hard drive, that too could explain the balking.

    Why not try to move folders in smaller increments and see how the system reacts.
    Chunking it up is working but it's extremely slow considering it's a move. And I have to select less data than I have free space which is also odd considering again that it's just a move... In windows a move just replaces the pointers on the data. The estimate to move 22GB in this case is 35 minutes.

    I can certainly live with it but I can't imagine there isn't a better way or something that is effecting the action.

    Are there certain folders inside your user directory that might behave differently? Part of the reason I am even going through this is that I was trying to add the music directly into iTunes 7.3 from a USB drive with "copy to music folder" set and it would get about 1000 songs in and tell me it couldn't copy more because there wasn't enough disk space, even though there should have been about a 25% surplus after adding all the music. So I copied the music to the system drive... My goal in all of this is to cleanly add the music to iTunes and have it end up in my music folder in my user directory. The fact that it's taken me the better part of last night and into today and I still haven't achieved the goal is getting chalked up to my ignorance of OS X for the moment. But it's beginning to look like I may have found my first example of something windows does better than os x.

    Thanks for your advice and if you have more advice or info let me know. Regardless of this minor setback I still love my MacBook.

  6. #6
    Problems moving large data in 10.4.10

    Member Since
    Jul 17, 2007
    Posts
    6
    Quote Originally Posted by MacHeadCase View Post
    It might have something to do because the folder is in root which, according to the Unix permissions, file structure and hierarchy, would be accessible to ALL users on your Mac. You now want that folder to be only in your user directory. I think that is why the folders are being copied, not moved.

    And normally, in the Mac world, holding down the Option key when dragging (you see a green plus button appear as you do so) makes copies and does not move files at all.

    So yes if you have only 43GB of free disk space and the system is trying to copy over 88GB of files, it won't work.
    I suppose that explanation makes sense even though I would have thought there would be some security mechanism to deal with that. Windows sets the files to inherit permissions from the target parent. Maybe I can set the permissions on the data and then try and move it all.

    Yah, normally holding down copies... In this case for some reason it's not so... In this case if I just drag I get the green plus. If I option I get nothing and it moves the data. Maybe the Mac is sensing my Microsoft background and is just F'ing with me. LOL

    And, yes... Obviously I can't copy 88GB of data to 43GB of free space. I'm not a complete moron. LOL

    Thanks again.

  7. #7
    MacHeadCase
    Guest
    From what I've seen in Mac-Forums and post by switchers, the hardest part for Windows users is not to expect their Mac and OS X to behave like Windows.

    A few things could explain the sluggishness: it might have to do with the way the Finder's cache is behaving and OS X will use free disk space as virtual memory in case the system doesn't have enough RAM for the job it is asked to do.

    And 1GB RAM in a MacBook is pretty standard nowadays, it is not pumped up by any means. I have an old iMac G5 and I have 1.5GB RAM and it's doing all right and desktop hardware components are usually faster than a lot of laptop ones. MacBook Pros do have faster components, dedicated video VRAM, etc. though.

  8. #8
    Problems moving large data in 10.4.10

    Member Since
    Jul 17, 2007
    Posts
    6
    Quote Originally Posted by MacHeadCase View Post
    From what I've seen in Mac-Forums and post by switchers, the hardest part for Windows users is not to expect their Mac and OS X to behave like Windows.
    I can appreciate that. But in fact I expect OS X to behave BETTER than windows. And if not then I assume there is a good reason but I still like to understand.

    I am guessing that by leaving a limitation such as this in the OS there is some other long term big picture issue that is avoided. It's actually something I intend to turn into a positive by boosting my unix command line skills.

  9. #9
    MacHeadCase
    Guest
    If you want to understand OS X better, read these articles from Amit Singh's website, KernelThread.

    He also wrote a book I would love to buy soon, Mac OS X Internals: A Systems Approach.

  10. #10
    Problems moving large data in 10.4.10

    Member Since
    Jul 17, 2007
    Posts
    6
    Quote Originally Posted by MacHeadCase View Post
    If you want to understand OS X better, read these articles from Amit Singh's website, KernelThread.

    He also wrote a book I would love to buy soon, Mac OS X Internals: A Systems Approach.
    Awesome info!

    Thanks yet again.

  11. #11
    MacHeadCase
    Guest
    Glad you find the links useful.

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