All the space is used up on /, but I can't find where it's gone

Asked by Paul McEwan on 2012-09-01

I have been running a Linux server for a couple of years now without issue, and all of a sudden in the last few days, the disk space on / keeps filling up. I clear up gigs of space, and the same problem happens every day. I cannot find where the space has gone and when I use xdiskusage, there's almost 14GB of space used in one place, and it says permission denied even though I'm root. Dovecot will not run, because there's no disk space. Please help! Thanks

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Ubuntu util-linux Edit question
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Paul McEwan
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If you can give the output of:

lsb_release -a; uname -a; dpkg -l | grep linux-image

I can help get some space freed.

Paul McEwan (pmcewan) said : #2

Sure, here it is. Thanks. I think there's something wrong with one of the mnt points, because it seems to have some kind of circular reference, but I can't figure out how

No LSB modules are available.
Distributor ID: Ubuntu
Description: Ubuntu 8.04.4 LTS
Release: 8.04
Codename: hardy
Linux mail2 2.6.24-21-server #1 SMP Wed Oct 22 00:18:13 UTC 2008 i686 GNU/Linux
ii linux-image-2.6.24-19-server 2.6.24-19.41 Linux kernel image for version 2.6.24 on x86
ii linux-image-2.6.24-21-server 2.6.24-21.43 Linux kernel image for version 2.6.24 on x86
ii linux-image-server Linux kernel image on Server Equipment.

sudo apt-get --purge remove linux-image-2.6.24-19-server
sudo apt-get --purge autoremove
sudo apt-get clean

Will free up a good chunk of space (not a huge lot though).

Why such an old release. Hardy server is EOL in April 2013, you may want to think about upgrading. Ideally to a clean install of Precise which will give support all the way to 2017.

Paul McEwan (pmcewan) said : #4

Thanks everybody, but it turns out that a drive had failed on a mount point, and it was copying everything locally instead of to the real destination. So I deleted everything locally, and got the mount point working correctly, and everything is OK now