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I have a directory (my_dir) which has 20 sub directories. Every time I run 'ls' or try to autocomplete a file name in this directory my IO usage goes to 100% and it takes very long time (10 mins) to list 20 sub directories.

Here is some background for it. Some time ago, I created millions of small files in this directory (By mistake). Then I deleted those small files (all of them). But now I am seeing this problem.

How can I fix it ?

  • Results fox fsck /dev/hda..? (Replace the device with your hard drive.) – Bart De Vos Feb 23 '12 at 12:07
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Move everything in the directory in to another directory. Remove the original directory. Recreate the original directory. Move everything back.

You are using a filesystem that can't shrink directories.

There's always e2fsck -D which will optimize all directories on the filesystem.

| improve this answer | |
  • +1 - Learn something new every day.. – Kyle Smith Feb 23 '12 at 12:14

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