GETH just filled up my entire hard drive :)

I am a huge fan of Ethereum, so I decided to dedicate a very modern workstation laptop to run Geth full node:).
I used Ubuntu 16.04 and 512GB SSD drive.

If I recall I started full node in early September and it is the only machine in my possession that was always synced to Ethereum.

At first blockchain was ~60GB syncing, after few days it finally synced and was around 120GB. It slowly moved up to 200GB.

I just checked my machine and everything halted, I was confused for few seconds and then I realized that I only have 512GB SSD and geth just filled up my entire drive ;).

To be exact (du -h) "chaindata" is 401GB.
Please, don't waste time asking where 111GB went, but 512GB ssd only means <500GB of actual storage and yes there is random system crap/packages that do add up.

Does anyone have a guide how to migrate to an external drive? I am NOT about to quit on Ethereum and I don't want to prune my blockchain, I want it ALL!!

Please, help!

My immediate "knee jerk" reaction is to just move "~/.ethereum/geth/chaindata to external drive and crate symlink ln -s.
HOWEVER, to be honest I don't know what other files do, what is the proper procedure to migrate blockchain to an external drive? I also want to proper archive Ethereum blockchain, so that I can move it freely to other machines that need full blockchain as I also use Mist/Ethereum Wallet.

Thank you in advance!


  • itoen5728ochaitoen5728ocha Member Posts: 5
    Is anyone else experiencing this problem? I am trying migrate chaindata to external drive:
    ln -s /chaindata ~/.ethereum/geth/chaindata

    Sadly, update process is super slow, hard drive speed seems to be a major factor for blockchain sync.

  • itoen5728ochaitoen5728ocha Member Posts: 5
    I will order a few different external hard drives from Amazon and report if I get it working.
    Meanwhile, would be great if someone provided feedback, I imagine I am not the only ETH full node running low on storage space ;).
  • RedsquirrelRedsquirrel Member Posts: 32
    Oh great is the blockchain really THAT big? That means I have a LONG way to go before I'm synced up! I did the mistake of using a local wallet to mine to so I can't access my funds until it syncs lol. I'm at only 39GB. Been a few weeks using --fast and --cache=1024. I allocated 1024GB to that VM so should be good for a bit...

    I too want to run a full node though, I will always leave this run and I did the appropriate port forwards. I think the reason it takes so long to sync is that there probably arn't a lot of people running full nodes.
  • itoen5728ochaitoen5728ocha Member Posts: 5
    Welcome Redsquirrel,

    This is a huge issue right now, but I am surprised how few people chime in on it. I am still having issues, but i cleaned my local drive on another machine , and freed up 500+GB. I was able to sync to Ethereum fully.

    Now the goal is to put "chaindata" on external drive. I've tried regular USB 3.0 hard drives and they were too slow to sync. So now I am getting a 1TB SSD that I will try next. I will be posting my results shortly.

    NOTE: I believe chaindata can be pruned, but my goal is to keep a complete copy.

    Below is the size of my Chaindata:
    ➜ geth du -h
    421G ./chaindata
    110M ./ethash
    45M ./nodes
    421G .
  • itoen5728ochaitoen5728ocha Member Posts: 5
    Fully synced the main blockchain by using external hard drive. Used SSD Samsung T5.
    Blockchain size is 452 GB.

    Some people I know are using non-SSD drives, but I wasn't able to sync w/o an external SSD.
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