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I have recently lvextend my logical volume (where /home is) from 16TiB to 25TiB. However, when I try to run extend2fs on my /dev/vtrak/home, it complains that

resize2fs 1.41.12 (17-May-2010)
resize2fs: File too large while trying to determine filesystem size

Upon further investigation, it seems that ext3 will only give me a 16TiB file system maximum.

I have 15 TB of data in this file system. What should I do now?

  • I can try to move to ext4 (but where can I temporarily put my data so I can update the filesystem?).
  • Try to split user home folders into separate filesystems?

UPDATE: Searching the internet comes up with references that although ext4 supports >16TiB, the current code doesn't (WTH). Does someone have a personal experience with this matter?

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up vote 5 down vote accepted

What kind of physical storage do you have? Any solution is going to require some gymnastics.

The simplest approach will be to create a second ext3 filesystem in your free space in the logical volume. Then use symlinks under /home to balance the amount of data in the two filesystems. Not pretty, but it works.

If you can figure out a way to move your data temporarily onto a separate storage device, you have lots of options. You should evaluate moving to xfs or jfs in that scenario.

It looks like if you get a new version of e2fsprogs, you can go beyond the 16tb limit. That suggests the following plan:

  1. Convert your existing filesystem to ext4.
  2. Build and install latest e2fsprogs
  3. Use the new resizefs to grow your filesystem to 25tb

Unfortunately I don't have personal experience with this scenario. My large filesystem experience is with xfs and reiserfs.

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