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How can I increase the maximum amount of inodes available on a dedicated server running CentOS 6.5 and ext4? The websites we are hosting create and use millions of small files. We are already hitting the limit, and had to remove several sites to get it down to 92% inode usage.

Filesystem             Inodes    IUsed   IFree IUse% Mounted on
                      3276800    58531 3218269    2% /
tmpfs                 3074543        1 3074542    1% /dev/shm
/dev/sda1             128016       44  127972    1% /boot
                      56967168 52223688 4743480   92% /home
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marked as duplicate by ewwhite, Ward, MadHatter, mdpc, Andrew May 6 '14 at 5:35

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up vote 5 down vote accepted

No, you can't; the number of inodes for ext(2,3,4) is set at creation time, and can't be altered after the fact. Your only option is to back-up, format (using different options), and restore your partition.

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You don't have many options for your inode exhaustion other than restructuring the directories... or a complete reformat of the data partition. My suggestion, now that you understand the workload and demands of this environment, is to refactor. That includes:

  • Maybe creating several filesystems/mountpoints to split up the website data (shard).
  • Pruning/purging unneeded data.
  • Acquiring more space.
  • Using a filesystem that isn't as susceptible to these inode limitations (XFS).
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