Linux Blog

What to do when you run out of disk space

Filed under: General Linux,Linux Software,Quick Linux Tutorials — TheLinuxBlog.com at 11:27 am on Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Some times you run out of disk space. It just happens. So, what do you do when it does happen?

Well, it just happened to me and I’ll write about what I did. I’ll first start off with how I discovered that I was out of disk space in the first place. It was about 10:30 last night when for some reason that I can’t remember now I decided I’d start up my good old XP Virtual Machine (Probably to use some quirky Windows program.) Anyhow the VMWare console reported that I did not have enough disk space. This came as a bit of a shock to me as I have a 100GB hard drive. I had been downloading ISO’s of Linux Distributions but not that much. So, here is what to do when you run out of disk space:

Step 1) Don’t panic
Step 2) Take a look at your processes and shutdown anything that is not needed. init to single user mode if it makes you feel better.
Step 3) Use the disk free utility to figure out how much space you have:

df -h /

Step 4) Make a couple of megabytes of free space so that you can install a program.
Step 5) Download and install xdiskusage from source or from your favorite package manager.
Step 6) Run xdiskusage from the terminal as root
Step 7) Select a disk / partition
Step 8) Wait
Step 9) View the results
Step 10) Rinse wash repeat. (Browse Partitions / Delete / Move files to another disk & do it again)

Here are some screen shots of my xdiskusage:

xdiskusage example screenshot
xdiskusage example screenshot xdiskusage example screenshot xdiskusage example screenshot
Click For xdiskusage screenshots

As you can see from the root screen shot that my root partition that I have 60GB used between my /var and /home directories. On closer inspection, the var has 40GB, 20GB in virtual machines and 20GB in the logs directory. 20GB’s of logs is quite a lot, this is where my problem is. After finding the problem I was able to backup my log files and remove them. I know that this can be done with shell scripts xdiskusage has helped me in the past so I thought I’d pass on the information. If you have a favorite utility or script what you use when you run out of disk space let me know!

Project URL: http://xdiskusage.sourceforge.net/

Man Pages for commands in this post »

df
xdiskusage

No Comments »

No comments yet.

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a comment

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>