I have a linux box on my school's server. When I was trying to install Protocol Buffers, disk usage is reported as exceeded. So I checked my disk usage by two command on my home directory:

du -h 
535M    .

df -ha
9.7T  1.5T  8.3T  15% /home/XXX

Are they supposed to be same number? Which one is the real usage of my disk on Linux box?

  • Are there any Quotas set up ?
    – Lawrence
    Apr 14, 2014 at 8:57
  • yes, I believe. Apr 14, 2014 at 8:58

1 Answer 1


du tells you how much data there is in the directory where you ran it. df tells you how much data is in total on the volume where your home directory is located. Your home directory is mounted remotely (over NFS); it is likely that it is on the same volume as other home directories, so df reports the data used by all the home directories on the same volume.

Your disk space may be exceeded even if there is room left on the device. A school environment is highly likely to have quotas in place. If you got a message “quota exceeded” as opposed to “no space left on device”, then you've exceeded your quota. Run the command quota to see what your quota is and how much of it you're using.

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