[Techtalk] my home directory grew

Maria McKinley maria at shadlen.org
Mon Apr 27 21:35:13 UTC 2009

Daniel Pittman wrote:
> Maria McKinley <maria at shadlen.org> writes:
>> Chris Wilson wrote:
>>> On Tue, 21 Apr 2009, Maria McKinley wrote:
>>>> I recently moved our home directories from a hard drive to a RAID array.
>>>> Initially I copied the home directory like this:
>>>> nohup cp -a /home/* /new_home/ &
>>>> Then, once it was done, I disconnected the machine from the network, so
>>>> no one could mess with the home directories, and used rsync:
>>>> rsync -av /home/ /new_home
>>>> For some reason after I was done copying, the home directories had grown
>>>> from 539G to 907G. There are no strange new directories, and it appears
>>>> that links have been preserved correctly. Anybody have any ideas what
>>>> could have happened?
>>> Do you mean it grew on the destination system between immediately
>>> before the rsync and immediately after? I that case I would guess
>>> that somebody added 360G of files in the mean time, or has been using
>>> sparse files.
>>> Or do you mean that it was 540G on the old system and 907G on the
>>> new?  In that case I'd guess a difference in filesystem or in cluster
>>> size of the filesystem.
>> The latter. 540G on the old system, 907G on the new. That is over
>> 350G.  Crazy. Glad the new RAID array is large...
> I can think of two possibilities before getting into the realms of
> strangeness.
> One is that rsync is very ... exciting in the interpretation of what it
> should do when a trailing slash is or isn't present, and I usually
> manage to get it wrong and create a second copy of a directory tree once
> every few months or so.
> I presume you checked that, though, so the other possibility that
> springs to mind is that they are on a different filesystem, and that you
> have either lost tail-packing on ReiserFS[1] or gone from a 1K block
> size to a 4K block size — and have an awful lot of small files.
> Regards,
>         Daniel
> Footnotes: 
> [1]  ...which is, overall, probably a win.

I found my missing 386G. I wrote a script to check the size all of the 
directories in the new home and the old home. They were all the same 
size except one, the lost+found on the new drive is 386G, but lost+found 
on the old drive is nearly empty. Should I run fsck? Will that clear out 
the directory? No one has been complaining about corrupt files, so not 
sure what is going on. My own home directory looks to be nearly 
duplicated in lost+found, but checking random original files in my home 
directory that are listed there doesn't show any problems.


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