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Given a partition intended solely for storing music, video and so-on, is it possible to hide the lost+found directory?

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up vote 16 down vote accepted

Create a subdirectory in that filesystem and share/symlink that instead of the filesystem root directory.

It's a bad idea to remove the lost+found directory. When recovering, fsck needs an existing multi-sector directory in which to create directory entries for lost files. If there is no lost+found directory, then it has to create one, potentially overwriting data.

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Any sources on that? – kubanczyk Jun 26 '09 at 20:43
By "sources on that" I assume you mean references? It's not mentioned in any manpages that I can find, but it's mentioned here (thanks, Google): – MikeyB Jun 26 '09 at 21:06
Real bad idea to remove it. FSCK will recreate, but as said above potentially causing more damage. – Tonny Sep 9 '11 at 10:37

For Gnome2/Mate Nautilus/Caja based desktops, create a file called .hidden in the root folder of the drive.

Edit the contents to read:


Nautilus will now hide the lost+found folder if you refresh. Press 'ctrl-h' to toggle the hidden items visible/invisible.

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Too bad this doesn't seem to work for KDE's Dolphin or even Thunar. However, Thunar hides lost+found by default since it's a system folder, it seems – Manu Järvinen Feb 24 '15 at 13:39
@ManuJärvinen What is system folder supposed to mean? As far as the kernel is concerned lost+found is an ordinary directory just like any other directory. It is only fsck which has a need for this specific directory name. Any other tool treating that name special only does so to match the convention used by fsck. – kasperd Jan 4 at 17:54

No. But you can delete it (it'll be recreated at the next fsck), or you can use a different file system which doesn't need a lost+found. ext2/3 does.

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Yeah, but you could have a script that deletes it after fsck runs. I don't really know what the point of this would be though. – BobbyShaftoe May 19 '09 at 5:59
Strictly speaking it is only the fsck command, which need the lost+found directory. The file system itself doesn't need it. I couldn't find any mention of the lost+found directory within the file system source code. From the file system's point of view, it is no different from all other directories. – kasperd Feb 19 '15 at 18:20
Really, really bad advice. It is a special directory because – MikeyB Jan 6 at 16:57

Nautilus (and Konq?) will interpret a .hidden file in a directory as a list of files to hide. Otherwise, as others have suggested, use XFS or ReiserFS.

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Wow, that solved my problem! Thanks. – thomasrutter Jan 23 '10 at 0:36
$ ls --ignore=lost+found

So make that an alias

$ alias ls='ls --ignore=lost+found'

With the updated ls that is part of GNU coreutils 8.15


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Lost+Found is where FSCK is going to deposit bits of files that it was able to recover if your file system is damaged. If the directory is currently empty, you are safe to just delete it.

FSCK (I believe) will re-create it if it has anything that needs to be put there.

Not sure why the presence of that directory is problematic for you, though?

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rmdir lost+found
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No. It can't be hidden because under UNIX os's, only files that begin with a period are hidden from a standard view.

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