How to find files that are eating up disk space

John Almberg jalmberg at
Wed Dec 17 18:19:40 UTC 2008

>>> Is there a command line tool that will help me figure out where the
>>> problem is?
>>  I should probably have mentioned that what I currently do is run
>>  	du -h -d0 /
>>  and gradually work my way down the tree, until I find the
>>  directory that is hogging disk space. This works, but is not
>>  exactly efficient.
> 	"-d0" limits the search to the indicated directory; i.e. what
> you can see by doing "ls -al /".  Not superior to "ls -al /" and
> using the Mark I eyeball.

sorry... I meant du -h -d1 <directory>

> 	What (I think) you want is "du -x -h /": infinite depth, but do
> not cross filesystem mount-points.  This is still broken in that it
> returns a list where the numbers are in a fixed-width fiend which
> are visually distinguished only by the last letter.
> 	Try this:
> 	du -x /
> 	and run the resu;ts through "sort":
> 	sort -nr
> 	and those results through "head":
> 	head -n 20

Thanks to everyone that suggested this. A much faster way to find the  
big offenders

> 	I have a cron job which does this for /usr and e-mails me the
> output every morning.  After a few days, weeks at most, I know what
> should be on that list ... and what shouldn't and needs
> investigating.

And this is a great proactive measure. Thanks

-- John

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