03.12.2018

The Advent of Void: Day 3: ncdu

Even though disks are large and cheap, its still very nice to be able to track down what is using disk space in a graphical way. While there are many nice tools that do this for desktops, if you’re on a server or otherwise a remote connection, you’ll need a text-mode tool. This is where ncdu(1) comes in.

When launched ncdu scans the directories below the current working directory and displays an output of the relative filesizes.

ncdu 1.13 ~ Use the arrow keys to navigate, press ? for help
--- /home/maldridge/Desktop/advent/ncdu ----------------------------------------
  777.0 MiB [##########]  hack3r5.divx
   24.0 MiB [          ]  plan_for_world_domination.tex
    8.0 MiB [          ] /secret_keys


 Total disk usage: 809.0 MiB  Apparent size: 809.0 MiB  Items: 4

Navigation is straight forward and the tree is very responsive since all the sizes are scanned at startup.

You can even delete files by pressing d while hovering on the file to delete:

ncdu 1.13 ~ Use the arrow keys to navigate, press ? for help
--- /home/┌───Confirm delete─────────────────────────────────────────┐----------
          │ Are you sure you want to delete "backdoor.key"?          │
    8.0 Mi│                                                          │
          │                                                          │
          │              yes      no     don't ask me again          │
          └──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────┘
 Total disk usage:   8.0 MiB  Apparent size:   8.0 MiB  Items: 1