I'm trying to use deja dup to backup to my ubuntu one account. I have 9.5GB of storage on ubuntu one. I am getting the error message: Backup location is too small. Try using one with more space.

I did a test backup to another partition, and my entire backup only took 6.2GB of space.

Anyone have any idea what is going on here?

  • What version DejaDup are you using?
    – Mitch
    Aug 31, 2013 at 8:30
  • deja-dup 26.0-0ubuntu1 Aug 31, 2013 at 13:24

2 Answers 2


I added another .5 GB from referrals on ubuntuone, bringing the total storage up to 10GB. Now the backup is proceeding with no problems. I'm not sure exactly why this is working now. But it would not proceed with the backup until there was 10GB of space. The backup is only taking up 6.2GB of space. I think Deja Dup should provide more information when failing a backup.


What Déjà Dup is asking for is a drive (not just the free space) that is at least as large as what the backup would take if uncompressed.

The way it knows this size is that before running the actual backup, it runs a sort of simulation and gets to know the entire amount of data to be backed up.

So in practice how many complete backups can fit inside a partition that Déjà Dup considers "large enough" depends from how compressable are your files.

EDIT: The above was confirmed to me in the Deja Dup support chat by Michael Terry, who is the main developer. For reference, the code implementing the check is here - and indeed, it compares the total size of the disk to the space required for (uncompressed) backup. Notice that (as clarified, again, by Michael) a check on free space is also run, few lines later, a failure of which triggers a separate error message.

  • Do you have a reference for this? Because there does not seem to be a reason to have that restriction. May 28 at 20:22
  • 1
    @OrganicMarble yes, I have amended my reply May 28 at 22:11
  • 1
    Nice! And upvoted. May 28 at 22:24

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