Mac101 – Command-Delete vs. Delete-Immediately

There are certain file deletion commands that have been in the macOS for years. I just wanted to look at two of them, Command-Delete and Delete-Immediately. They can make your workflow much easier and more efficient.


The most used and most common of these commands is Command-Delete ⌘-⌫. You can access this command from the File Menu. It is listed as Move to Trash:


However, if you have been using a Mac for a while, then I am sure you are deleting stuff by using the keyboard shortcut Command Key ⌘ and the Delete Key ⌫ (or Backspace Key). Just select your item on your Mac and press those two keys and the file is sent to the Trash. It is fast and efficient. Keep in mind, the file is still in the Trash in case you change your mind.


The other delete command is a bit more drastic. To be quite honest, I don’t use this command much, but if you are sure about what you are deleting, then by all means use it. You start by accessing the File Menu again. You will see Move to Trash. Just hold down the Option Key ⌥ and Move to Trash will change to Delete-Immediately:


If you are going to use this command regularly, I recommend the keyboard shortcut of Command Key ⌘–Option Key ⌥–Delete Key ⌫. Just select your item and hit Command-Option-Delete. There is a word of caution. When you use Delete-Immediately the item you are deleting is removed from you Mac immediately! It is not sitting in the Trash in case you change your mind. It is gone! So, if you use Delete-Immediately, make sure about what you are deleting.


These commands have been around for a while. Like I said, I don’t use the Delete-Immediately command, preferring to play it safe. If you are not using these commands already, they can speed up your workflow a bit.