Tag Archives: harddisk

Get More Space Out of Your ext3 Partition

I have just discovered that ext3 defaults to reserving 5% of its partition exclusively for root, as a precaution measure that your system does not get FUBAR when you use it for your root partition. I have a 230GB external USB disk that I use for all my big storage requirements, downloaded stuff, backups etc. Due to this reservation I had 11.5GB of unusable disk space, thankfully this is easy to fix:

tune2fs -m 0 /dev/sdf1

Replace sdf1 with your partition name. You don’t even have to unmount your disk. Voilá, 11.5 GB more space for free :-) Here is the output of df -h as proof:


Filesystem            Size  Used Avail Use% Mounted on
/dev/sdf1             230G  193G   26G  89% /media/disk


Filesystem            Size  Used Avail Use% Mounted on
/dev/sdf1             230G  193G   38G  84% /media/disk

If you like this, you might also be interested in How to change Ubuntu forced fsck.

Update: The free space limitation is also used to prevent fragmentation. So if you set the limit to zero and operate on a very full harddisk for a while, your filesystem might slow down.

Howto Change Ubuntu Forced fsck

In Ubuntu 7.10 the boot hard disk is checked every 20 boots. I have to boot my laptop quite often, so about once a week booting takes more than 10 minutes. This clearly sucks. Fortunately, there is an easy way to fix this. With tune2fs it is possible to change the interval from mount-times to timed interval:

sudo tune2fs -c 0 -i 1m /dev/sda3

This disables maximum mount time for forced check, but instead uses timed check. Every month the harddisk is forced to get checked. I can live with that.