Submit Hint Search The Forums LinksStatsPollsHeadlinesRSS
14,000 hints and counting!

A small timesaving trick when emptying Mail's Trash Apps
I have multiple mail accounts and folders set up in Mail, including the Junk folder. I found that after deleting mail from the Junk folder, and from multiple different accounts' inboxes, that when I went to the Trash and selected all items and pressed the Delete key, only some of the items would be deleted -- I would have to "select all" a second time and press Delete to delete the rest.

I have found that if I hold down the Option key when pressing delete after selecting all in the Trash folder, I only have to press Delete once. Just thought someone else might find this trick useful...
    •    
  • Currently 2.00 / 5
  You rated: 4 / 5 (27 votes cast)
 
[12,211 views]  

A small timesaving trick when emptying Mail's Trash | 11 comments | Create New Account
Click here to return to the 'A small timesaving trick when emptying Mail's Trash' hint
The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
A small timesaving trick when emptying Mail's Trash
Authored by: club60.org on Feb 18, '10 07:43:51AM

Or you may try just pressing Cmd-Shift-Backspace without even entering the Trash Folder (or selecting a menu item Mailbox -> Erase Deleted Messages -> In All Accounts). Or am I missing something?



[ Reply to This | # ]
A small timesaving trick when emptying Mail's Trash
Authored by: michelle_eris on Feb 18, '10 07:50:33AM

To empty mail's trash, just press command-shift-delete in Mac OS 10.6, or command-K in earlier versions. No need to open the trash, select all and press delete.



[ Reply to This | # ]
A small timesaving trick when emptying Mail's Trash
Authored by: rgspb on Feb 18, '10 07:54:24AM

Isn't it easier just to hit Command Shift Delete?



[ Reply to This | # ]
A small timesaving trick when emptying Mail's Trash
Authored by: adrianm on Feb 18, '10 08:34:21AM

That might be because it's still processing the delete junk operation on various accounts... so what I usually do is wait a few seconds before emtying trash.

And the quickest way to empty trash is shift+cmd+backspace - no need to go to trash and select anything.

---
~/.sig: not found



[ Reply to This | # ]
A small timesaving trick when emptying Mail's Trash
Authored by: davidduff on Feb 18, '10 09:51:00AM
i think this is an interesting topic that i haven't seen talked about much anywhere.

to help clarify the hint - this applies when you have one or more of your accounts set to move deleted messages to a trash folder (in preferences>accounts>mailbox behaviors. the trash is a "holding area" for messages that have been designated for deletion. to my knowledge, mail.app only supports and documents a single all-at-once action for "expunging" messages from the trash, namely by selecting "mailbox>erase deleted messages" menu item (either for an individual mailbox for for all mailboxes at once). i personally find this to be a silly limitation. it means that as soon as you do this, you lose access to all previously deleted messages, including both old ones and ones you might have deleted a few seconds ago. in the 5+ years i've been using mail.app, i typically let mail accumulate in the trash and then every once in a while i go in and delete only the oldest couple of months' messages from my trash folder.

i wonder: does everybody already do this?

this deletion is done by sorting by date, selecting a group (often quite large) and hitting delete. i have observed that as the hint indicates, i usually have to do this 2-3 times to actually get the messages to all go away - if i select, say, 2000 messages for deletion, maybe only half of them get deleted on the first pass.

so that is the specfic benefit of this hint: whatever option-delete does (and i don't see it documented anywhere, nor is it visible in the mail.app menus, afaik), it prevents having to repeated tell mail.app to delete messages.

i personally think it is a silly limitation of mail.app that this feature is not better supported and better documented. if there is value in having a trash mailbox in the first place (and i firmly believe that there is) then there is certainly value in providing more flexibility in how to expunge messages.

as an aside, i also think that there should be a separate "delete now" command (vs. the existing move-to-trash command). it would be useful specifically when you end up with multiple copies of a doc with a huge attachment, or when you go through your spam folder and clear mail for deletion. in these situations, you definitely don't want to go through the extra overhead of moving (copying) such messages or keeping them around for review. if delete-now were a documented command, it could be used both for doing an immediate delete of messages from random mailboxes and for the "selective expunge" function described above when used on messages in Trash.

[ Reply to This | # ]

That Feature Exists
Authored by: barko192 on Feb 18, '10 12:12:13PM

If you look in Mail preferences, under the "Accounts" tab, select "Mailbox Behaviors". There you will find a preference for how old you want messages in your trash to be before they're automatically deleted. For me, the standard setting of a month works great.



[ Reply to This | # ]
That Feature Exists
Authored by: sr105 on Feb 19, '10 08:33:05AM

Agreed. I can think of special exceptions, but why would you want to manually manage the Trash folder? Plus, Mac Mail is so incredibly slow at processing large folders of messages that just clicking on the Trash folder is painful.



[ Reply to This | # ]
That Feature Exists
Authored by: pauljlucas on Feb 24, '10 11:32:49AM
Questions:
  1. I currently have the "Move deleted messages to the Trash mailbox" checkbox checked. What does it mean if it were unchecked?
  2. I have the "Permanently erase deletes messages when:" pop-up set to "Quitting Mail" and yet, when I quit and relaunch Mail, the messages are still in the trash. Why?
---
- Paul


[ Reply to This | # ]
A small timesaving trick when emptying Mail's Trash
Authored by: bschappel on Feb 18, '10 01:35:28PM

In 10.6 pressing SHIFT-COMMAND-OPTION-DELETE empties the trash for all accounts without the "Are you sure" confirmation dialog.



[ Reply to This | # ]
A small timesaving trick when emptying Mail's Trash
Authored by: xplora on Feb 18, '10 02:15:16PM

course, the best option yet (unless you are deleting because of space issues) is to simply make sure that in each accounts "Mailbox Behaviors" you have "Permanently erase deleted messages when:" set to "One day/week/month old" or "Quitting Mail".



[ Reply to This | # ]
A small timesaving trick when emptying Mail's Trash
Authored by: mkhaw on Feb 21, '10 12:57:46PM

In 10.6, you can clear the Junk folder without first moving messages from it to Trash by pressing cmd+option+J (or equivalently, choose the menu item Mailbox->Erase Junk Mail)



[ Reply to This | # ]