The other day I came in to work and found that our development server - a Ubuntu box - had a full hard disk. I did a bit of investigation and it seems like mozilla thunderbird is the major culprit. After burning off some backup files which did not need to be on the machine, the disk was left at 94%:
$ df -h Filesystem Size Used Avail Use% Mounted on /dev/sda1 895G 791G 59G 94% / none 4.0G 300K 4.0G 1% /dev none 4.0G 1.4M 4.0G 1% /dev/shm none 4.0G 140K 4.0G 1% /var/run none 4.0G 0 4.0G 0% /var/lock none 4.0G 0 4.0G 0% /lib/init/rw $ cd $ du -ch | grep [0-9]G 666G ./.thunderbird/ccsmcruu.default/ImapMail/mail.adofms.com.au 666G ./.thunderbird/ccsmcruu.default/ImapMail 667G ./.thunderbird/ccsmcruu.default 667G ./.thunderbird 2.2G ./.VirtualBox/Machines/iBike/Snapshots 2.2G ./.VirtualBox/Machines/iBike 2.2G ./.VirtualBox/Machines 2.2G ./.VirtualBox 670G . 670G total
I did some reading and found that Mozilla Thunderbird does not compact files by default - i.e. all of the old emails that were sent to trash are still kept. One of the mailboxes used to get a lot of spam so I guess this accounts for the 667GB. I opened up Thunderbird to see how much space the inbox actually takes up and it turns out to be approximately 500MB - over 1000 times less than the stuff that has not been compacted over the years.
So i right clicked on the inbox directory in the tree on the left of Thunderbird and selected 'compact'. I left it for about 12hours but even after that it still said 'compacting folder' on the status bar. I don't use Thunderbird on this PC - it belonged to a colleague who has left the company, however I do occasionally need to look through the inbox for references to the project I am working on, so deleting all traces of Thunderbird is not an option.
My question is - is there any way I can monitor the progress of Thunderbird's compacting function? I would really like to know how long it is going to take.
If there is any way I can speed up the compacting process i would also like to know.