ext3_dx_add_entry: Directory index full!

Andreas Dilger adilger at dilger.ca
Mon May 3 07:01:57 UTC 2010

On 2010-05-02, at 02:57, Ross Boylan wrote:
My log is showing errors like
> May  1 05:14:17 corn kernel: [6822807.017625] EXT3-fs warning (device dm-7): ext3_dx_add_entry: Directory index full!
> Judging from the minor device numbers in /dev/mapper, that corresponds to my mail spool.
> My searches suggest that the problem indicates an individual directory
> has too many files in it. There does not seem to be a general shortage
> of inodes or space. df -i shows IUse of 11% for that partition and df
> says 88% of the ~37G is in use.

The directory is probably at least 10M files, though it might also suffer from the random create/delete cycle of the mail spool directory.

> First question: what happens in these circumstances?  Are files lost?
> Search and indexing are inefficient?

It _should_ be the latter, though I haven't actually looked into it closely.

> Second: is there a way to find what directory is causing the problem?

Patch the error message to print the inode number and dentry name, and submit it here.

> Third: How can I fix this?

e2fsck -fD on the filesystem (unmounted of course)

Cheers, Andreas

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