Linux: Find Out Directory Size Command

I am a new Linux user. How do I find out size of a directory on Linux operating systems using command line options?


You need to use the du command:

[a] Find and estimate file space usage.

[b] Summarize disk usage of each FILE/Directory/Folder.

[c] Shows the sizes of directories and files.


The basic syntax is:


du dirName

du [options] dirName


Without any options, du command shows the names and used space for each directories including all sub-directories in the current directory:



Sample outputs:

Fig.01: du command in action

To find information about /etc and /home/nixcraft directory, enter:

du /path/to/dir

du /etc

du /home/nixcraft

du /root /home/nixcraft

Pass the -h option to get output in human readable format i.e. show output in kilobytes (K), megabytes (M) and gigabytes (G):

du -h /etc

du -h /dir1/file2

du -h /root

du -h


Sample outputs:

8.0K ./.vim

24K ./scripts

48K ./.ssh

16K ./.keychain

2.2M ./.lftp

2.4M .

Pass the -s option to see the total disk space used by a directory:

du -sh

du -sh /etc/

du -sh /etc /home/ /securebackup/


Sample outputs:

4.1M /etc

152K /home/

902M /securebackup/

Pass the -c to see a grand total for all of the files, type:

du -csh /root/ /etc/ /home/


Sample outputs:

2.4M /root/

4.1M /etc/

152K /home/

6.6M total

See also

UNIX disk usage command examples – include command line tool such as du, df, ncdu, and GUI tools.

See du(1) and examples.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *