I have an empty seperate partition used for my vhd/virtualbox. mounted at
I've deleted everything now and there's a lost+found folder left over. It takes up about 5gigs
Is it safe to remove a lost and found folder?
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fsck will recreate the lost+found directory if it is missing.
On startup most distributions run fsck if the filesystem is detected as not being unmounted cleanly.
As fsck creates the lost+found directory if it is missing, it will create it then and place anything that it finds into that directory.
So you can remove it but not recommended (as per Marcelo comment).
So far I was under the impression that deleting
lost+found was perfectly safe, as it would be recreated by fsck whenever it is needed. But after the Ubuntu 12.10 upgrade I got this mail from cron:
/etc/cron.daily/standard: Some local file systems lack a lost+found directory. This means if the file system is damaged and needs to be repaired, fsck will not have anywhere to put stray files for recovery. You should consider creating a lost+found directory with mklost+found(8). The following lost+found directories were not available: /home/lost+found
The man-page of
mklost+found pre-allocates disk blocks to the lost+found directory so that when e2fsck(8) is being run to recover a filesystem, it does not need to allocate blocks in the filesystem to store a large number of unlinked files. This ensures that e2fsck will not have to allocate data blocks in the filesystem during recovery.
I am not sure what exactly that means, but it seems to indicate that not having
lost+found might cause trouble on recovery. Furthermore it indicates that
lost+found different from a regular directory in that it has preallocated blocks associated with it.
You don't want to delete the lost+found directory.
It is an important system folder and will be recreated on next boot anyway. There is some pretty good explanation of why it is there and what it does here