Ubuntu – folder size/used space

du -h --max-depth=1 | sort -hr | head -20
-> the size will be displayed in GB, MB or K 

du -hc –max-depth=1 /path/to/folder | sort -h

The command du “summarizes disk usage of each FILE, recursively for directories,” e.g.,

du -hs /path/to/directory
  • -h is to get the numbers “human readable”, e.g. get 140M instead of 143260 (size in KBytes)
  • -s is for summary (otherwise you’ll get not only the size of the folder but also for everything in the folder separately)

As you’re using -h you can sort the human readable values using

du -h | sort -h

The -h flag on sort will consider “Human Readable” size values.

If want to avoid recursively listing all files and directories, you can supply the --max-depth parameter to limit how many items are displayed. Most commonly, --max-depth=1

du -h --max-depth=1 /path/to/directory


If your desired directory has many sub-directories then, use the following:

$ cd ~/your/target/directory
$ du -csh 

-c, –total produce a grand total
-s, –summarize display only a total for each argument
-h, –human-readable print sizes in human readable format (e.g., 1K 234M 2G)

which would then produce a overall total of the memory usage by all files/folders in the current directory.

-> Show top 10 biggest subdirs in the current dir.

du -sk * | sort -nr | head -10

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