How can I fix/get below my quota?

If you receive an e-mail telling you that you are over your quota or are having problems running software and get out-of-disk-space errors, you will need to delete some files from your home directory. To do this you will need to log into a machine in the CADE Lab via a virtual terminal. To do this hold down ctrl+alt and hit f4 at the login screen. You will then be dropped into a virtual terminal where you can log in with your regular name and password.

You can try and log in using the normal graphical, however this will be a very slow process.

Once you have logged in run the following command:

du -ka | sort -n

This will list all of the files you have within your home by size (in ascending order). You can deleted any files or directories that you no longer need:

rm filename to remove files

rm -rf directoryname to remove for directories – be aware- all files and subdirectories also removed.

Once you have deleted all the files you no longer need run the quota command:


If you are still over you will need to delete more files. If this is not possible, please come to the Help Desk and we can discuss your situation.

If after deleting your files you find that the results of the sort command and the quota command are different (ie: the sort command says that you are under quota within your home but quota still says it is over) then it is possible that you have files elsewhere under /home.

This can happen if you have been part of any groups or teams that requires you to place files outside of your own home directory but within /home. If this happens please come to the Help Desk and we will be happy to run a search for you to locate the offending files.

Posted in: Quota Questions, Unix, Windows Questions