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Jeroen W. Pluimers on .NET, C#, Delphi, databases, and personal interests

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xargs compressing lots of files using xz

Posted by jpluimers on 2019/11/20

One day, on a legacy Linux system, logrotate managed to skip some files in the middle of a sequence in /var/log.

Since I didn’t have time to sort out the cause (the system was being phased out), I used this to compress the rest of the log-files (dated in 2017):

sudo -u bash
pushd /var/log
ls | grep -vw xz | grep "\-20......$" | xargs -L 1 ls -alh

After that you can execute this in the same directory:

ls | grep -vw xz | grep "\-20......$" | xargs -L 1 time xz

It skips any xz files and includes only files in the year 2017.

I occasionally tracked progress with this:

ls -alh /var/log/ | grep -v xz | less

That got back a few gigabytes of disk space, just enough to help me migrate the system away.


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