3 Simple Ways to Get the Size of Directories in Linux
Two days ago I got a mail from our regular reader, who asked me how to get a summary of directories in Linux.
I know this can be achieved by the disk usage (Do) command, which I didn’t even find on my first attempt.
So I used the possible combination by digging into the Du Command Man page and finally got the best result.
But alternatively, you can use the ncdu command or the tree command to achieve the same results.
By default the du command displays the size of the current directory files, which does not display the directory and its sub-directory size.
Read the article below to quickly summarize the size of each directory and their sub-directory.
Method-1: How to Get the Size of a Directory in Linux Using the Disk Usage (du) Command
The du command refers to disk usage. It is a standard Unix program that is used to estimate file space usage in the present working directory.
It recursively summarizes the disk usage to obtain a directory and its subdirectory size.
As I said at the beginning of the article, we are going to use the Disk Usage (Do) command with some options to achieve this. So use the following disk usage command combination to get the summary of folders and their sub-folders.
Use the below du command format to get the total size of each directory, including sub-directories.
$ du -hc /home/daygeek/Documents/ | sort -rh | head -20 20G total 20G /home/daygeek/Documents/ 9.6G /home/daygeek/Documents/drive-2daygeek 6.3G /home/daygeek/Documents/Thanu_Photos 5.3G /home/daygeek/Documents/Thanu_Photos/Camera 5.3G /home/daygeek/Documents/drive-2daygeek/Thanu-videos 3.2G /home/daygeek/Documents/drive-mageshm 2.3G /home/daygeek/Documents/drive-2daygeek/Thanu-Photos 2.2G /home/daygeek/Documents/drive-2daygeek/Thanu-photos-by-month 916M /home/daygeek/Documents/drive-mageshm/Tanisha 454M /home/daygeek/Documents/drive-mageshm/2g-backup 415M /home/daygeek/Documents/Thanu_Photos/WhatsApp Video 300M /home/daygeek/Documents/drive-2daygeek/Thanu-photos-by-month/Jan-2017 288M /home/daygeek/Documents/drive-2daygeek/Thanu-photos-by-month/Oct-2017 226M /home/daygeek/Documents/drive-2daygeek/Thanu-photos-by-month/Sep-2017 219M /home/daygeek/Documents/Thanu_Photos/WhatsApp Documents 213M /home/daygeek/Documents/drive-mageshm/photos 163M /home/daygeek/Documents/Thanu_Photos/WhatsApp Video/Sent 161M /home/daygeek/Documents/Thanu_Photos/WhatsApp Images 154M /home/daygeek/Documents/drive-2daygeek/Thanu-photos-by-month/June-2017
The above command will print the size of each file and the actual size of each directory, including their subdirectory and total size.
Details of the above command:
du:It’s a command
-h:Print sizes in human readable format (e.g., 1K, 234M, 2G)
-c:Produce a grand total
/home/daygeek/Documents/:The path of directory
sort -rh:Sort the results with numerical value
head -20:Output the first 20 lines result
Use the below du command format to get the total size of a given directory.
$ du -hs /home/daygeek/Documents or $ du -h --max-depth=0 /home/daygeek/Documents/ 20G /home/daygeek/Documents
If you want to get the size of the first-level sub-directories, including their sub-directories, for a given directory on Linux, use the du command format below.
$ du -h --max-depth=1 /home/daygeek/Documents/ 3.2G /home/daygeek/Documents/drive-mageshm 4.0K /home/daygeek/Documents/daygeek 756K /home/daygeek/Documents/Bank_Details 9.6G /home/daygeek/Documents/drive-2daygeek 6.3G /home/daygeek/Documents/Thanu_Photos 20G /home/daygeek/Documents/
Method-2: How to Get the Size of a Directory in Linux Using the ncdu (NCurses Disk Usage) Command
The ncdu (NCurses Disk Usage) is a curses-based version of the well-known ‘du’, and provides a fast way to see what directories are using your disk space.
$ ncdu /home/daygeek/Documents/ ncdu 1.14.1 ~ Use the arrow keys to navigate, press ? for help --- /home/daygeek/Documents ------------------------------------------------------------------------- 9.6 GiB [##########] /drive-2daygeek 6.3 GiB [###### ] /Thanu_Photos 3.2 GiB [### ] /drive-mageshm 756.0 KiB [ ] /Bank_Details 272.0 KiB [ ] user-friendly-zorin-os-15-has-been-released-TouchInterface1.png 172.0 KiB [ ] user-friendly-zorin-os-15-has-been-released-NightLight.png 164.0 KiB [ ] ConfigServer Security and Firewall (csf) Cheat Sheet.pdf 132.0 KiB [ ] user-friendly-zorin-os-15-has-been-released-Todo.png 112.0 KiB [ ] user-friendly-zorin-os-15-has-been-released-ZorinAutoTheme.png 96.0 KiB [ ] distro-info.xlsx 92.0 KiB [ ] user-friendly-zorin-os-15-has-been-released-ZorinConnect.png 88.0 KiB [ ] disco-duro-png-3.png 72.0 KiB [ ] distro-info-v1.xlsx 44.0 KiB [ ] user-friendly-zorin-os-15-has-been-released-DoNotDisturb.png 36.0 KiB [ ] user-friendly-zorin-os-15-has-been-released-NightLight.jpg 36.0 KiB [ ] user-friendly-zorin-os-15-has-been-released-TouchInterface1.jpg 28.0 KiB [ ] user-friendly-zorin-os-15-has-been-released-Todo.jpg 24.0 KiB [ ] user-friendly-zorin-os-15-has-been-released-ZorinAutoTheme.jpg 16.0 KiB [ ] multiple ways to check the hostname in linux.txt 16.0 KiB [ ] ConfigServer Security and Firewall (csf) Cheat Sheet.ods 16.0 KiB [ ] How to Understand Linux Top Command Output and Usage.ods 12.0 KiB [ ] pure-ftpd.png Total disk usage: 19.0 GiB Apparent size: 19.0 GiB Items: 6104
The ncdu command scans the given directory and displays the files and folder size recursively.
Method-3: How to Get the Size of a Directory in Linux Using the tree Command
The tree command is a recursive directory listing program that produces a depth indented listing of files and directories in a tree-like format.
$ tree --du -h /opt/ktube-media-downloader /opt/ktube-media-downloader ├── [830K] ktube-media-downloader ├── [ 246] ktube-media-downloader.desktop ├── [2.2M] lnav_0.8.1_amd64.deb └── [ 45M] WgetInterface ├── [ 71K] libwgetinterface.a └── [ 45M] vivaldi-stable_1.7.735.46-1_amd64.deb 49M used in 1 directory, 5 files
The two commands above show directory summary, but the tree command will tell you every file size inside the directory and their subdirectory, and print the summary of the directory.