[clug] very FAT linux filesystems or cluster pixes?

Scott Ferguson scott.ferguson.clug at gmail.com
Wed Feb 23 00:03:43 MST 2011

On Tue, 22 Feb 2011 22:38:59 -0500 Eyal Lebedinsky wrote:
> Could this be a sparse file?
> Eyal
> On 22/02/2011 21:57, Scott Ferguson wrote:
>> > Can any one give me a reason why the same files should dramatically
>> > change size according to the file system it resides on?
>> >
>> > Eg#0 1960 files in 259 sub-folders == 11.8MB debian lenny server ext3
>> >
>> > Eg#1 same files, checked with md5 sums == 11.8MB debian squeeze server ext4
>> >
>> > Eg#2 ditto, == 11.8MB on unknow OS and files system (*cough* godaddy *spit*)
>> >
>> > Eg#3 ditto, == 27MB CentOS, unknown filesystem (other web hosting company)

>> ><snipped>

>> > used, and re-installing.
>> >
>> > Curiouser, and curiouser...
>> >
>> > Thanks in advance.

I don't know Eyal. I'll confess I had to look up sparse files to find
out what you mean.. not only have I been calling them frothy files, I
had (previously) pronounced quinoa "quin-o-a" :-(

How would I tell with only cPanel, ftp, or php?

Perhaps another clue might be that cPanel usage tool shows individual
file sizes correctly, but directory are close to double the correct size.

I've been given several reasons so far why this might occur, and they're
all good reasons. But why should I even notice these effects?
xMB == xMB so advertising xMB of space when most (or all) people are
going to find the actual size confusing is not a good business model.
It's not a small percentage like the difference between formatted drive
size and unformatted - metadata and extended attributes doesn't explain
it, neither does "reserved" space (space is set by quota, same as I do
on my servers).

Perhaps I'm over tired, but given as how I have no control over the
filesystem - it seems disingenuous to charge for raw disk space. The
only analogy I can think of is agisting stock. I will rent you a paddock
at a certain rate, and you can stock it as you wish (provided you don't
overgraze) OR you can pay a given rate for feed and water and I will
determine how much space the animal gets. But I don't rent an acre of
pasture that actually measures 1/2 an acre - and then claim it's because
there's lots of pasture. In this case I'm renting agistment for my xMB
of files, and I expect the hosting company to provide it - it shouldn't
matter whether it takes 4 acres per horse because it hasn't rained (16k
blocks), or 1/4 acre per horse because it has. I guess it comes down to
the meaning of "space" and "usage".


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