Unable to Empty Trash in Joomla

We occasionally get contacted by customers who complain about the trashing process in Joomla; they say that they just cannot empty the trash. When we get one of these calls, we tell the customer: “Are you sure you are really emptying the trash?”

The reason why we say that is that in 99% of the cases – the person is trying to empty the trash from the wrong place (where it cannot be emptied). Here’s what happens:

  1. The person deletes a few items (such as articles, menu items, or modules).
  2. The person then changes the status (for the listing) to All (the default view – Select Status – displays published and unpublished items only, All will display published, unpublished, archived, and trashed items).

  3. The person then selects the items to be completely deleted, and then clicks on Trash on the top right menu.

  4. The items are not deleted.

The reason why this isn’t working is because the person is trashing the items again, he’s not deleting them. He’s just moving them to the trash again. It’s like picking a paper from the recycle bin, and then throwing it back…

So, what should he have done to empty the trash?

The mistake occurred in step #2 in the process above – instead of choosing All, he should have chosen Trashed; it is only when choosing Trashed where he will see the Empty Trash icon on the top right menu (instead of the Trash icon). To delete the items, the person must select the items to be completely removed, and then click on the Empty Trash button.

Note: We have noticed that some of our customers who are very new to Joomla do not select the items to be deleted before clicking on the Empty Trash button. It seems to be a common pitfall and perhaps Joomla should revise the trashing process as the term Empty Trash doesn’t imply that the person has to select anything – it just means that it’ll remove whatever is in the trash!

If you’re experiencing problems with completing removing items from your Joomla website, and if the above doesn’t work for you, then all you need to do is to contact us. We’re always there, we’re eager to help, we’re very experienced with Joomla, and we’re very affordable! What are you waiting for?

One Response to “Unable to Empty Trash in Joomla”
  1. Comment by John K — February 21, 2013 @ 4:56 pm

    Sorry, but the latest release of Joomla has serious empty trash issues! I have tried every posted empty trash solution to no avail!

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