Home > Questions

The operation can't be completed because you don't have permission to access some of the items

I copied some files to my Time Capsule and now I would like to delete them from my Mac. When I drag them to the Trash they start deleting but then a message comes up saying, "The operation can’t be completed because you don’t have permission to access some of the items." and then the deleting bombs out. Any ideas on how to rectify this?

Best Answered by

iBoysoft author Jenny Zeng

Jenny Zeng

Answered on Monday, July 10, 2023

"The operation can't be completed because you don't have permission to access some of the items" error may occur when deleting files on Mac, copying files from an external drive to Mac, or moving files from Mac to an external drive or cloud.

For your case, I suggest you follow the tips below to fix the permission issue.

Change permissions: Ensure you have read & write access to the files you want to modify and that the files are not locked.

  1. Right-click on the files you want to delete and select "Get Info."
  2. Make sure the box beside Locked isn't checked.
  3. In the Sharing & Permissions section, make sure your account has Read & Write privileges.

Make alias: If the permission is correctly set but you still can't delete the files, create an alias in the folder, then delete the files within the alias.

  1. Create a folder to store the files you want to delete.
  2. Right-click on the folder and select "Make Alias."
  3. Delete the files from the Alias folder.
  4. Empty the Trash to permanently remove them.

Remove file encryption: You should also check if these files were encrypted and decrypt them in the original device. For instance, maybe the files were encrypted on your Windows computer. 

Force delete files: If you still can't get rid of the files, try force deleting them from Terminal.

  1. Open Terminal from the Applications/Utilities folder.
  2. Type the following command and press Enter.sudo rm -f filepathFirst, enter sudo rm -f followed by a space, then drag and drop the folder with files you want to delete to the Terminal window to get its file path. Lastly, hit the Enter key.
  3. Input the admin password and hit Enter. (The password won't show up on the screen.)

Read Also:

How to Change Permissions & Fix Permissions Denied on Mac

How to Permanently Delete Files & Folders on MacBook Pro/Air

People Also Ask

Read More Questions

Read More Advice From iBoysoft's Computer Experts

no se puede comprimir carpeta en Mac

No se pueden comprimir archivos/carpetas en Mac, ¿por qué y cómo solucionarlo

Esta publicación explica por qué no puedes comprimir carpetas en tu Mac y ofrece soluciones alternativas para solucionarlo.

Guide to Gatekeeper on Mac

What is Gatekeeper & How to Disable Gatekeeper on Ventura?

Fails to Meet Gatekeeper Policy? This guide tells you what Mac Gatekeeper is and how to enable/bypass/disable Gatekeeper on macOS Sonoma, Vetnura, Monterey and other version.

Wiki Tips

apple my photo stream shut down

Apple's My Photo Stream Is Shutting Down-Here's What to Do

This post talks about Apple's decision to shut down My Photo Stream and what it means for your cloud photos, plus how to save images in My Photo Stream.

News Tips