Bleachbit fills up my disk


I selected all the checkboxes at once and then started the cleanup routine. I was monitoring the progress of Bleachbit, which seemed to have gained me about 5 Gig of space at one point during its execution. Then the space seemed to be getting smaller. Then I noticed this line in the bleachbit terminal console!

debug: wrote 1 files and 6548791296 bytes

Which therefore seems to be doing the absolute opposite of what it's intended to do. Beyond this point my disk space was really shrinking badly and I had to kill bleachbit.

What's going on?

This is actually normal. The option System - Free Disk Space wipes unallocated areas of the hard drive by creating a large, blank file. When it is finished, BleachBit deletes this file, so it won't permanently hog your space. This isn't counter-productive because wiping free disk space has no permanent effect on free disk space: it is for privacy only to wipe traces of files previously deleted using standard methods.

Because this process is very slow and most people don't need to be so paranoid, I generally recommend leaving this option off (and also on Linux, the option to wipe Memory).

Andrew, lead developer