NetApp, Storage

NetApp – Out of i-nodes error

We are using NetApp volume for Enterprise Vault Archive solution and today I received error message from Netapp Operations Manager that the volume is running out of i-nodes.

Error message: no space left on the device

Error message: file system is out of inodes

What is inodes – inodes was a new concept for a windows admin like me.

In a Unix-style file system, an index node, informally referred to as an i-node, is a data structure used to represent a file system object, which can be one of various things including a file or a directory. Each i-node stores the attributes and disk block location(s) of the file system object’s data.[1] File system object attributes may include manipulation metadata (e.g. creation, access, modify time), as well as owner and permission data


The following are recommendations to increase free inodes to fix the error “out of inodes”:

1.       Move files to another volume or delete files if possible

2.       Increase the max inode value on the volume.  Use the maxfiles command

3.       Increase the size of the volume. This is not a preferred corrective action in situation where there is still 20% free space.

Impact of i-node increase

The new maximum number of files specified is more than twice as big as it needs to be, based on current usage patterns. Increasing the maximum number of files consumes disk space, and the number can never be decreased. Configuring a large number of inodes can also result in less available memory after an upgrade, which means you might not be able to run WAFL_check.

How to increase inode value

We can use maxfiles command as below to increase i-node value for testvol

MAXFiles testvol 123456789

Output will be something similar

The new maximum number of files will be rounded to 123124909

Are you sure you want to increase the maximum number of files? y

Maxfiles testvolume will show you current number of i-nodes and used value

Maxfiles command without volume name will display inode information for all volumes



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