I found this command to get the top 10 largest files from my git history (in this closed issue https://github.com/18F/C2/issues/439)

git verify-pack -v .git/objects/pack/pack-7b03cc896f31b2441f3a791ef760bd28495697e6.idx \
| sort -k 3 -n \
| tail -10

It now shows something like this:

32f0dac6ee67325ca12b9c03279ee2dbc7790567 blob   12732444 11425432 1091676437
c63c2851049c51eabbcd54cb46cad367d4e0d593 blob   14368670 12189261 246241495

What do these numbers represent? What of them is the file size? Also I would be very grateful if anyone could break down and explain the top command. I don't understand it.


To reduce the space used by files, git packs objects stored in the repository into a .pack file. This pack file contains the actual git objects and the .idx contains the index used to quickly locate objects within the pack file.

$ git verify-pack -v .git/objects/pack/pack-7b03cc896f31b2441f3a791ef760bd28495697e6.idx 

The above command reads the given .idx file and verifies it with the corresponding pack file. Using -v you get a verbose output.

The third column in the output is the size of the objects. Using sort -k 3 -n we are sorting the output numerically using the 3th column (based on size) and with tail -10 we are cutting out the last 10 which are the largest in size.

To get the name of files from their hash:

$ git ls-tree -r HEAD | grep HASH

To get a list of all names:

$ git verify-pack -v .git/objects/pack/pack-1daab5282d01ab18db98e21a985eb2d288f7faa0.idx | sort -k 3 -n | tail | cut -f1 -d' ' | while read i; do git ls-tree -r HEAD  | grep "$i"; done

100644 blob 6209b3840fa470a534e670cff93bce698ba60819    .bashrc
100644 blob 1131e7127cb2cf6c1f854f728a1794262cdf85f6    .vimrc
100644 blob a249a5ae9b33553f4484da42a019ed14e5f44e21    .vim/colors/clrs.vim
100644 blob f329f223953827e59954f67ad4d76568b6dd894e    .config/openbox/rc.xml

Read more:

$ git verify-pack --help

Unpacking Git packfiles

Git Internals - Packfiles

Git - finding a filename from a SHA1

| improve this answer | |
  • Is the size given as byte or bit? – Adam Jul 15 at 8:10
  • It's in Bytes... – Ravexina Jul 15 at 8:14
  • Hm, when I do git verify-pack -v .git/objects/pack/pack-1daab5282d01ab18db98e21a985eb2d288f7faa0.idx | sort -k 3 -n | tail | cut -f1 -d' ' | while read i; do git ls-tree -r HEAD | grep "$i"; done I get no output. – Adam Jul 15 at 13:30
  • What if you run git gc first? Also your idx file might have a different name! Use find .git/ -name *.idx to find it! – Ravexina Jul 15 at 13:35

Here is another neat solution to this problem using git's ls-tree sub-command:

$ git ls-tree  -rl HEAD | sort -k4 -n | tail | awk '{print $4, $5}' |
numfmt --to=iec-i

4.0Ki  .bashrc
4.0Ki  .config/conky/conky.conf
4.5Ki  .config/rofi/config.rasi
5.4Ki  .vim/notes
7.2Ki  .config/tint2/tint2rc
7.5Ki  .bash_functions
7.5Ki  .vimrc
19Ki   .vim/colors/clrs.vim
38Ki   .config/openbox/rc.xml
63Ki   .config/ipfilter.dat
  • -r to list the files recursively.
  • -l to show object size of blob (file) entries.
  • sort -k4 -n sort numerically based on 4th column.
  • tail cut out the last 10 item.
  • Using awk to only get the 4th and 5th column out out the output.
| improve this answer | |

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