I have a folder that contains a not so large amount of space called /data/backup.

I have been told that if I link that folder (/data/backup) to an even bigger folder area like /bigdata/backup for example, that I will be able to execute backups to the /data/backup folder.

It will then just create a link, but the data will be seen in both folders and the latter one (/bigdata/backup) will contain the backup results but it will show on both folders.

Since the /bigdata/backup has far more disk space then the backup will no longer fail because of space problems in the /data/backup one.

Is this true?


Yes, it is true! To use /bigdata/backup as if it was /data/backup you can use these commands in a terminal.

First, as you already have a /data/backup directory, move everything in it to /bigdata/backup:

mv /data/backup/* /bigdata/backup

Then delete your old directory:

rm -r /data/backup

Now you can link the directories with:

ln -s /bigdata/backup /data/backup

This way, /data/backup is essentially just a redirect to /bigdata/backup; it's space on disk is negligible.

  • Instead of rm -r /data/backup, I'd suggest rmdir /data/backup, just in case something went wrong in the mv step, like forgetting some important dotfiles. rmdir will refuse to work if there is anything left in /data/backup, which is probably what you want. – amalloy May 7 '14 at 18:37

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.