Take the 2-minute tour ×
Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I need to decompress huge files when I upload them into a software and it is failing. I thought the problem was with tmpfs. Then I decided to use /tmp as tmpfs, but still failing. I can upload files that after decompression are smaller than 4.8GB, which is the tmpfs at /run. So how could I change it? Here is the df -h output:

Filesystem      Size  Used Avail Use% Mounted on
/dev/sda2       817G  3.9G  771G   1% /
udev             12G  4.0K   12G   1% /dev
tmpfs           100G   16K  100G   1% /tmp
tmpfs           4.8G  992K  4.8G   1% /run
none            5.0M     0  5.0M   0% /run/lock
none             12G  148K   12G   1% /run/shm
/dev/sdb2       2.6T   99G  2.4T   4% /home
/dev/sdc1       1.9T  1.6T  301G  84% /media/My Book

Thank you.

share|improve this question
"Then I decided to use /tmp as tmpfs"? What was it before? Your previous sentence implies you already were using tmpfs. –  psusi May 21 '12 at 1:55

1 Answer 1

All tmpfs file systems are backed by the kernel page cache. This means that their maximum capacity is roughly the amount of free memory and swap space on the system. The only way you're going to get more space on a tmpfs is:

  1. close memory hungry applications.
  2. add more RAM to the system.
  3. add more swap space to the system.

But if you're talking about temporary files with sizes in gigabytes, you are probably better off using a location backed by real disk rather than a tmpfs.

share|improve this answer
Thanks guys. In this system I created the swap partition with 110GB and the /tmp partition with another 110GB. I have 24GB of memory. It seems that every time I try to upload files in this software (Galaxy, sequencing data analysis) it still using the tmpfs at /run instead the tmpfs /tmp. I will try to make a specific /home/username/tmp as izx recommended, but I don't see why the /tmp partition that I have is not working. I also changed the configuration file of the software to use /tmp for database temporary file storage and still not working. Is is possible to change tmpfs mounted on /run? –  user64953 May 21 '12 at 16:14
Sorry, I missed that part of the question. I guess you'll have to find out where exactly the program you're using is storing its temporary files (which seems to either be below /run or a directory symlinked in to /run), and see if you can alter that path some how. You didn't mention what program you were dealing with in the question, so it is hard to say more. –  James Henstridge May 22 '12 at 6:57

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.