I'm running a python application that keeps crashing with sqlite3.OperationalError: database or disk is full, even though I have 300G in the partition where this is installed and from where I'm running it.

However, I noticed my /var partition is being filled and emptied while the application is running, and that it is 90% full. I saw this with System Monitor.

Turns out that when I see the partitions with Baobab, I see only 6G available of 50G in that partition. However...

$ sudo du -sh /var/
8.4G    /var/

I simply cannot see the files/directories saturating my /var directory,

Any ideas what could be happening?

  • You can use df -i to see the number of used inodes, which might be hurting you. This may or may not help Commented Jul 14, 2022 at 14:28
  • Maybe you have deleted files that are still open, check lsof.
    – pLumo
    Commented Jul 14, 2022 at 14:30
  • 1
    Please add output of df -h /var to your question Commented Jul 14, 2022 at 17:18

1 Answer 1


One way would be to install ncdu which is basically a combination of tree and ls and use it like below:

ncdu / or ncdu /var/ and then navigate with arrow keys to find out files or directories saturating your device.

This is not a well-known method but always works for me.

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