I'm writing some technical explanation, and I've written this sentence The whole thing isn't necessary, we mostly use what's in the devices folder. This should mean that not everything is necessary but only what's in the mentioned folder. I have no doubt that the meaning is clear from the context, but I'm wondering if the first part of the sentence is correct. I know it would be in French, but I'm not sure about English. Thanks!

1 Answer 1


“The whole thing isn’t necessary” can be understood as quite an emphatic assertion that every part is unnecessary.

If you want to say that only a portion is unnecessary, consider phrasing it as, “It isn’t necessary to use the whole thing” or “You don’t need the whole thing”, or even “Not all of it is needed”.

  • 1
    Cool thanks a lot! It did look weird when I read it again but since it's right in French I had doubts, I could really feel the two parts of my brain arguing
    – Nico
    Dec 11, 2017 at 14:51

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