Is it considered Bal Tashchis to delete files/folders needlessly on a computer, or to send data to /dev/null in Linux?

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3 Answers 3


If your filesystem database has a linked list tree structure then this is baal tashchis, as the files are the fruits of a tree.

There are some poskim who rule that the entire Windows OS is ba'al tashchis meikara which invalidates part of your question, however.

  • 1
    Also a doubly linked list!
    – Moshe
    Feb 17, 2021 at 4:25
  • 1
    +1 for bashing windows! Feb 17, 2021 at 15:42
  • @chessprogrammer Everyone has to pay their Micro$oft tax
    – The GRAPKE
    Feb 17, 2021 at 21:34

It is only bal tashchis if you delete cookies


Only if the file has hebrew letters in it.

  • 1
    Seeing as you're not allowed to cut down non-Jewish trees, you're probably not allowed to cut down non-Jewish files either
    – b a
    Feb 21, 2021 at 18:00

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