No free space add after removing large file

Rein Kadastik wigry at
Tue Aug 30 12:04:49 GMT 2005

Well not neccessarily. I hafve encountered the same problem on both 
FreeBSD and Linux systems. The thing probably is that the filesystem is 
not fully synced. There is  a sync command in unix and I have tried it 
also. Sometimes it helps sometimes not. Usually there are two solutions: 
reboot or just wait for a while until kernel corrects the free space 
that is shown to the user. Anyway, I guess that it is some sort of a 
buffering feature of the unix systems.

My regular situation for this kinda problem is when some filesystem is 
full and I delete and delete files but no room will appear. After a 
while, all the room becomes available again.

Maybe somebody more familiar with kernel and filesystems can give good 
explanation to this feature (it definetly is not a bug as otherwise it 
would have been corrected long time ago).


Gerhard Schmidt wrote:

>On Tue, Aug 30, 2005 at 01:37:56PM +0200, Frank de Bot wrote:
>>On my fs I had a file of 20gb. The free space on that fs was at that 
>>time around 1gb. But after removing the 20gb file, the freespace wasn't 
>>added :-S ?
>>What has gone wrong and how can I 'reclaim' the free space?
>There could be a process which has an open filehandle to this file. The 
>file isn't deleted until all filehandles are closed. 
>Try to install /usr/ports/sysutils/lsof and look for the open handle. E.g.
>lsof | grep <filename>  
>Kill the process and the freespace should grow. If this doesn't work 
>or there is no open handle try do go to single user mode an force an 
>fsck on this fielsystem. 
>        Estartu
>Gerhard Schmidt    | Nick : estartu      IRC : Estartu  |
>Fischbachweg 3     |                                    |  PGP Public Key
>86856 Hiltenfingen | EMail: estartu at          |  on request
>Germany            |                                    |

More information about the freebsd-questions mailing list