Rescued items from Macintosh HD

When my Macintosh crashes, I get a folder in my trash called “Rescued items from Macintosh HD”. I know these are temporary files that were salvaged, but my question is, how do I actually make use of these files? Do I take that folder and put it somewhere else to activate it?

If you lost what you were working on when the computer crashed, then see if any of those files contain it. Otherwise just delete them.

IIRC, you can just double-click the item and it should open right up. You don’t need to move it anywhere in particular for it to work.

I was wondering-- do you only have that folder appear if you have certain applications installed? I have not had that folder appear on my iMac, but I faintly recall it happening on my mom’s Power Mac. I want to say it’s a Microsoft Word thing, as her computer has it and mine doesn’t, but I’m not sure. Anyone?

This site explains it a bit more:

Several applications make temporary files, which they place in an invisibile folder called “Temporary Items” at the root of your startup volume.

Photoshop does it (the program implements its own proprietary version of virtual memory, and makes a swap file for each open document); FileMaker Pro does it (FileMaker is a disk-based database, and writes changes to disk as you work; the temp file records the changes, which are flushed back to the actual file during idle time. On networked databases, the temp file also holds whatever portions of the full database you’re staring at and/or working on locally, and, again, your changes are flushed back to the actual file on a server elsewhere during idle time).

If you crash, the OS notices that the invisible Temporary Items folder isn’t empty, and tosses them into the trash inside a folder created on-the-fly called “Rescued items from <startup volume>”. Mostly they aren’t useful (neither Photoshop nor FileMaker temporary files can be opened and used for anything), but a few (perhaps text-based applications like a word processor that saves changes as you type?) might be, i.e., you might recover the last paragraph and a half that you typed between last save and moment of crash as plain ASCII text.

The OS doesn’t try to sort them out, it leaves it up to you.

Some Applications, AppleWorks for one, actually check the Trash for “rescued items” files that they created and open them automatically when you restart the program. It’s very pleasant surprise to have that happen after you think you’ve just lost several hours work to a power failure !

These files are from the Temporary Items folder, they are temporary work files for applications, they are never recoverable manually. The best you can hope for is to relaunch your app and see if it can recover them from the trash. IIRC, MSWord and Photoshop are capable of autorecovery (just don’t empty the trash until it makes the recovery attempt at app launch time).

I was under the impression that anything located in the trash cannot be activated on a Macintosh until it is removed from the trash by the user.

Cool, I didn’t know that!

Well it’s about time! I remember back in the antediluvian days, circa System 4, when the school’s comp lab electrical power would flicker and all the Macs would spontaneously reboot (goodbye, last 8 pages of term paper :frowning: ) and you’d see the little MacWrite temp files, but could MacWrite DO anything with them? Naaah…

That is true, but does not apply here. The self-recovering programs are smart enough to scavenge the trash for recoverable files.