Spontaneous development of supremely large files on different ext3 filesystems

Stephen Samuel darkonc at gmail.com
Wed Sep 12 00:01:18 UTC 2007

One simple point:
bash-3.2$bc -ql
35184386120704; 14032896
18014398562775391; 53297152

The filesize is basically the same, except for the addition of a stray
bit, way off in left field.   (( Note that  both of the 'old' file
sizes are multiples of 8K ))

On 9/10/07, Maurice Volaski <mvolaski at aecom.yu.edu> wrote:
> I have come across two files, essentially untouched in years, on two
> different ext3 filesystems on the same server, Gentoo AMD 64-bit with
> kernel 2.6.22 and fsck version 1.40.2 currently, spontaneously
> becoming supremely large:
> Filesystem one
> Inode 16257874, i_size is 18014398562775391, should be 53297152
> Filesystem two
> Inode 2121855, i_size is 35184386120704, should be 14032896.
> Both were discovered during an ordinary backup operation (via EMC
> Insiginia's Retrospect Linux client).
> The backup runs daily and so one day, one file must have grew
> spontaneously to this size and then on another day, it happened to
> the second file, which is on a second filesystem. The backup attempt
> generated repeated errors:
> EXT3-fs warning (device dm-2): ext3_block_to_path: block > big
> Both filesystems are running on different logical volumes, but
> underlying that is are drbd network raid devices and underlying that
> is a RAID 6-based SATA disk array.
> --
> Maurice Volaski, mvolaski at aecom.yu.edu
> Computing Support, Rose F. Kennedy Center
> Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University
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Stephen Samuel http://www.bcgreen.com

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