[lug] Cleaning up /var when it gets too full

Chip Atkinson chip at rmpg.org
Mon Sep 23 15:38:47 MDT 2002

One thing that I have heard in favor of many partitions is that there are
various cracks (ok, at least one anyway) that can't jump partitions.

Any comments/opinions on that?


On Mon, 23 Sep 2002, John Karns wrote:

> On Mon, 23 Sep 2002, Timothy C. Klein said:
> > * Sean Reifschneider (jafo at tummy.com) wrote:
> > > On Wed, Sep 18, 2002 at 10:01:22PM -0600, Bear Giles wrote:
> > > >This may seem like a lot of effort, but experience shows that it
> > > >eliminates a *lot* of problems.  It's a lot like that old commercial
> > >
> > > Unfortunately, on systems without a nice LVM and online resizable
> > > filesystems, creating a bunch of partitions tends to create a lot more
> > > problems than it eliminates...  Unless you have a really good idea up front
> > > what the high water mark of /var/tmp, /var/log, /var/spool, etc are, you're
> > > likely to run out of space in some of them while others have plenty to
> > > spare...
> > >
> > > Mostly I'm going with simpler partitioning schemes -- always a /boot up
> > > front on the disc, then usually either just a / or a / and /home.
> > >
> >
> > I sure agree here.  When I first started using Linux a few years ago,
> > all the advice seemed to point to multiple partitions.  I suspect this
> > was just becuase most Unix folks were used to server machines.  If you
> > want to make sure you log and mail files don't get DOSed and bring down
> > the system by eating up all disk space, I guess a separate /var is good.
> > And a /usr/, /usr/local, etc.
> I also agree here, but would add that it may depend on the specific
> purpose of the machine, and how the disk space is allocated.  These days
> with the disk capacities available, it's not uncommon to have gobs of
> empty space available after setting up the server.  I have also found that
> filesystems alternative to the traditional ext2 may handle the disk full
> issue a bit more eloquently.  Several months ago I ran out of disk space
> on my laptop (reiserfs /) while copying some large files.  I was easily
> able to correct the situation without having to change to a single user
> run level, and go through some of the contortions as I had to in previous
> situations with ext2 fs.
> > For the average home Linux user, though, that is a major pain in the
> > bleep.  It just causes problems.  Your needs will inevitably change, and
> > then you are stuck with an unwieldy system.
> IMO, this also applies to most servers that I've set up.  It can be quite
> difficult to know before hand how much space to allocate; and in my
> experience, in cases where I had set things up with 4 or 5 separate
> partitions, I later regretted it and reverted to a simpler scheme.  There
> is also a lot of personal preference that comes into play here, I suppose.
> Most of the machines I deal with have minimal exposure to the outside
> world.
> ----------------------------------------------------------------
> John Karns                                        jkarns at csd.net
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