What impacts inodes to increase in web-hosting cpanel


Inodes counts are going higher day by day, and the web-host has set limit, I’m not able to understand what is impacting inodes count, because it is an economical question for me!

I’m not an expert, so I could be wrong, but AFAIK “inode” is how servers map “human readable” locations to “machine readable” locations.

For example,
might map to
so that the server runs more efficiently.

If you believe that the number of “human readable” paths is not that great and if you think the number of inodes is incorrect then you should contact your host and ask them to remove the “extras”. If you have a lot of unused folders and files, you should remove them and see if that helps. If you are using the server for “storage” then you can decide to either pay more or move them to another server.

I don’t know, so I’m guessing that files that are too large to fit in a single sector may have more than one inode.

Every file and every directory uses one inode, regardless of how big it is.

If you’re using too many inodes you should remove files and directories you are no longer using, or archive them using tar so multiple files become one file.


Hi @drilldevid

As indicated by @rpkamp every file and every directory uses one inode. A lot of times when you see an increase in inode usage we find that it can be attributed to mail. You can have low disk space usage and high inode usage because you can have a large number of small files each consuming their one inode.

The solution to lowering the count as indicated already though is to reduce the number of files /folders you have - ultimately finding the source of the usage would be best. If you don’t have SSH access to the server you might ask your provider for a breakdown of what the allocation of inodes for your account is

If you do have SSH access to the server something like this might help you identify where you need to look:

du -s --inodes * | sort -rn 

I hope this helps!


As a hosting industry pro I can tell you that it is most likely email.

The easiest thing to do here is to connect an email client, something like Thunderbird or whatever you have available, and set up an IMAP account. You should then be able to archive the data locally or to the cloud while removing the burden on your web hosting Inode count. Put old emails into an archive and just keep newer traffic on the server.

If you have too many new emails and this solution won’t work for you, I’d suggest a paid email exchange server like GSuite or Office 365.

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