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OK, I have a MAJOR problem. Every once in a while I completely run out of disk space, or so Ubuntu (11.04) tells me, when in reality there is no way that can be true. The error reads "The volume "Filesystem root" has only 6.4 MB disk space remaining" or some other absurdly low number. I have three drives mounted: sda is the home drive and is a 500GB drive; sdb is a 160GB drive that is being used to house my database for, and other files relevant to, Subsonic; sdc is a 3TB array (4 x 1TB drives in RAID5 attached to a 3ware 9650SE controller). I usually am alerted to this problem when I try to connect to my server via VNC, in that I can't connect. I can only see the desktop by using the monitor attached to the server (my TV, actually). I wish I could take a screenshot of the Disk Usage Analyzer but the OS says I don't even have disk space to store that.
sda has no more than maybe 80GB on it. It houses the OS and my programs. That's it. sdc is where I store everything and currently there is only 375GB used. So, WTF gives?
If I restart the machine the problem will sometimes resolve but I don't want to have to keep doing that. Could it be some rogue cache that I can't figure out?
sounds like you're not appreciating that you have different filesystems here and as such only the one mentioned in the error message is relevant here. you said it was "Filesystem root", but that doesn't make sense, is it "/root" or maybe "/ (root)" ? Seems a little strange that you don't appear to have actually verified that there is that much disk space. a simple "df -h" would show you conclusively what the avaialbel space on each file system was.
to track down exactly where the space has gone, I usually recommend just running "du -xh --max-depth=1 /" and then for each total that looks excessive, change the directory path to that directory and run it again and you'll soon find where it's all gone.
Random reboots are clearly no way to fix anything.
OK, thanks acid_kewpie and fifnih. I have more than 6MB free this time, that example was just a recent one. It still says I have way more usage than I know I should, but I think I have found the culprits. But first, here's the results of df -i
now, I said I think I found the culprits. Here's what I'm pretty confident it is. I couldn't find folder hogging up space other than my home directory, so I figured it mush be a hidden file of some kind. I used du -ah | sort -n > file to redirect all the data to a file I could sort through. Looking for the largest files I found two,
OK, so that looks fun! If it really is FULL of those connection logs, then you should stop that being possible in the first instamce. There's no need to make the messages not get logged if you don't have the errors in the first place. I think VNC is AWFUL. I would NEVER advocate it's use. Especially not on the internet directly like you appear to have. I would suggest you stop this being possible, and only expose secure services like SSH to the internet. You can reasonably safely tunnel VNC over SSH, and that would mean that no one could even attempt to conenct to VNC without first logging in over SSH.
As for the file itself, there are plenty of people asking about that, e.g. http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1517991&page=2 but I would *REALLY* suggest you don't. This log file has served a great purpose here, even if you found the contents in a roundabout way. Don't ditch it, as poorly as it is managed by the X server.