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Old 08-29-2009, 05:34 AM   #1
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Lack of free space problem


I've just installed last version of Ubuntu on my laptop and faced several problems.

There are three partitions on my hard drive: ~2gb, 70gb, 70gb.
The main partition is the smallest one, as 'space used' in properties of the "file system" is ~2gb.

I've installed a number of necessary programs using add/remove daemon, and then 'free space' in file system's properties appeared to be equal to 0 bytes.

Now there are a lot of difficults: browser doesn't store cookies, history, I can't download any files, krusader doesn't start etc.. Is it somehow linked with 0bytes of free space remaining? Definitely yes.

How can I solve the problem? How do I make OS use one of huge partitions by default or something?

Best wishes, Roman.
Old 08-29-2009, 05:45 AM   #2
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first off, check /var/log to see if there are any large/old log files you can delete to immediately free up some space.

Then use the 'du' command to find out where all your space is being used. Something like:
'du / -h --max-depth=1' #run as root

This will list the top level directories and their size. You can change '/' to each directory listed to "dig deeper" into the file system and fine more unnecessary stuff to remove until you've got about 10% free space.

Then you might consider backing up your drive and using gparted to repartition your drive.
Old 08-29-2009, 05:55 AM   #3
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ok, I will do as you've said.

But is there any way to avoid repartitioning? In Windows I could use any partition in any time, saving files and applications wherever I want.

Thank you!
Old 08-29-2009, 06:37 AM   #4
Wim Sturkenboom
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Is this a dual boot (Linux and Windows)? If so, which partition is what.

If not, there is no reason not to repartition during a re-install of Linux. If the 2GB is the root partition, it will always give you problems because of the small size. Use the manual repartition,
  • create a 20-50GB root partition (/) which will give you sufficient space to install additional programs (I have 25GB and still have 20GB available)
  • create a swap partition; the size depends on the amount of memory and how you use the laptop; if you want to be able to hybernate, it should be at least the size of the memory, if you're editing massive big files (e.g. videos) it should be the size of the memory and else the rule that you can apply can be 2x size of memory with a max of 1GB
  • use the remainder for the home partition (/home)
As an alternative to a separate root and home partition, you can only create the root partition (although I advise against it); the home partition will become a home directory in the root partition.

With regards to your remark on Windows: that is not completely true. I have had an 10 GB Windows partition that was full. I could not install any software, even if I tried to install on another partition/drive because to install programs space in the temp directory is required.

PS I have heard a number of complaints about the 'default' partition sizes of the Ubuntu install. Although I use Ubuntu myself, I think that it's quite brain-dead from that perspective.

Hope this helps.
Old 08-29-2009, 07:57 AM   #5
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Since you haven't provide the system allocations for the partition scheme. I assume your '/' is on the '2GB'. Not enough!

You could do some space allocation changes on the other '70 GB' partitions.

Please provide the output of 'fdisk -l'.

You could do a search here on LQ as this subject has been covered so many times. The next two links should aid you in the future;
Old 08-29-2009, 08:50 AM   #6
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Thumbs up

Thank everybody!
After reading all your suggestions, I've reinstalled Ubuntu, repartitioning hard disk the way Wim Sturkenboom advices, and now everything seems to work properly.

Thanks again, good luck.


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