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2/26/12
Original Poster
gmsprof

Deleting all docs at once without closing account

Hi,

I have 120GB of documents that I need to delete from my DOCS account.  It is much too time-consuming to click on batches of files and trash them as you can only do that with 100-200 files at a time and I have over 100,000 to get rid of.  Is there any way that Google can just wipe my DOCS clean without having to shut down my GMAIL account?

Thanks.
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Bas Braams
2/26/12
Bas Braams
Excellent request, and it has been denied [1]. It seems that the Google support staff involved in [1] didn't even understand the issue. Other GDocs users, including myself, have found it difficult or impossible to work with a large number of files [2-4].

I like to copy one of @borouhin's comment in the discussion under [3]: <<And about "overwhelming the system"... well, I thought it Google Docs is not a beta-release of a cloud service from an unknown start-up company :-) If Google sells additional storage even in Terabytes, it should provide some means to utilize such storage space.>>

I noted my own experience in that same conversation: <<My experience similar to that of OP was with a collection about 5 times smaller in all respects; some 20K files and 20 GB total space [4]. The experience was not successful; in the end I settled on Amazon for my archive. Upload to GDocs was slow; probably 10 times slower than upload to Amazon. Worse, about 0.1% of the uploads failed with some kind of error and there was no convenient way to identify the files for which the upload had failed. On top of that come the problems with handling large numbers of files, like more than about 300 files in any single operation. Finally I am missing convenient directory listing operations including the option to list to a file.>>

[1] Unable to reset or delete ALL files in Google Docs: What to do when you need to delete thousands of files at once?

[2] I have over100 gb of data. How do i delete all those files without doing it 50 files at a time?

[3] Deleting a large collection does not delete its files

2/26/12
Original Poster
gmsprof
Thank you for telling me about your experience.  It looks like there is no easy solution for what I want to do.  Being able to wipe out and start over seems like a fairly easy feature to implement to me.  The use of tags and not a true folder hierarchy is also cumbersome because you cannot delete a folder and be confident that all the files inside are also deleted.  Does Amazon storage allow for a folder hierachy?
Bas Braams
2/26/12
Bas Braams
I did not explore closely what Amazon S3 can do; I just created a bunch of archives and uploaded those. In Google Docs I had been uploading my individual files.
2/27/12
Original Poster
gmsprof
I managed to delete everything after several tedious hours.  I have since discovered that one can access Google Docs via Cyberduck, which theoretically would allow one to do batch operations more easily (including mass deletions).  Deleting via Cyberduck seems to be a genuine delete that permanently removes the file, not just a tagging with Trash that allows the file to persist on Google Docs.  The only limitation is that Cyberduck does not seem to reflect an existing set of files already on Google Docs, but it will reflect all changes going forward. From this point on, I am going to only upload files and make changes to the folders via Cyberduck (which also seems to be much faster than the Google Docs uploader).  I plan to stick with Google Docs for now as it seems to be the only service that provides search-within-PDF capabilities.
Chris Fulton
9/20/12
Chris Fulton
For anyone else having this problem I just discovered a minor improvement in this process. If you scroll down though all files list in drive interface then back up to the top and only then select the choose all check box then you can successfully delete 400-500 files at a go. Still has a refresh problem, still is slow as heck, still not what we should have: a real ability to mass delete, wild card delete etc... but better that 50 at  a go. 

good luck. 
 
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