No space left on device even though it has free space?
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how much data are you trying to move. Looks like you've got about 2 gigs available. The cp command probably writes it to a temp file first, then to permanent storage, so it needs to use twice as much space as the amount of data you're writing.
How many is a bunch and how are they organized? FAT has a terrible and not-well-documented limit for files/directories on the root of a partition. The limit is 512 if all files are named in 8.3 format. When using long names, though, every 13 characters consumes another file entry. EG: Your filename from the first post, 16 characters long, needs the same number of file entries as two files that are only 11 characters each.
This limit only affects the root of a partition. It's annoying but easily worked around by organizing files into subdirectories. I personally think there should be a warning on usb disk packages because I see this a lot.
Thousands, but they are in subfolders. About 10G worth now as I have pictures going back to 2000 then a few scanned from earlier years.
The external drive is formatted ext2. Well was I formatted again last night and switched to ext3.