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       e2fsck.conf - Configuration file for e2fsck


       e2fsck.conf  is the configuration file for e2fsck(8).  It controls the default behavior of
       e2fsck(8) while it is checking ext2, ext3, or ext4 filesystems.

       The e2fsck.conf file uses an  INI-style  format.   Stanzas,  or  top-level  sections,  are
       delimited by square braces: [ ].  Within each section, each line defines a relation, which
       assigns tags  to  values,  or  to  a  subsection,  which  contains  further  relations  or
       subsections.   An  example of the INI-style format used by this configuration file follows

                 tag1 = value_a
                 tag1 = value_b
                 tag2 = value_c

            [section 2]
                 tag3 = {
                      subtag1 = subtag_value_a
                      subtag1 = subtag_value_b
                      subtag2 = subtag_value_c
                 tag1 = value_d
                 tag2 = value_e

       Comments are delimited by a semicolon (';') or a hash ('#') character at the beginning  of
       the comment, and are terminated by the end of line character.

       Tags  and  values  must  be  quoted  using double quotes if they contain spaces.  Within a
       quoted string, the  standard  backslash  interpretations  apply:  "\n"  (for  the  newline
       character),  "\t"  (for  the  tab character), "\b" (for the backspace character), and "\\"
       (for the backslash character).

       The following stanzas are used in the e2fsck.conf file.  They will be  described  in  more
       detail in future sections of this document.

              This stanza contains general configuration parameters for e2fsck's behavior.

              Contains  relations  which  define  the  default  parameters used by e2fsck(8).  In
              general, these defaults may be overridden by command-line options provided  by  the

              This  stanza  allows  the  administrator  to reconfigure how e2fsck handles various
              filesystem inconsistencies.

              This stanza controls when e2fsck will attempt to use scratch files  to  reduce  the
              need for memory.

THE [options] STANZA

       The following relations are defined in the [options] stanza.

              If  this  relation  is  set to a boolean value of true, then if the user interrupts
              e2fsck using ^C, and the filesystem is not explicitly flagged as containing errors,
              e2fsck  will exit with an exit status of 0 instead of 32.  This setting defaults to

              Unfortunately, due  to  Windows'  unfortunate  design  decision  to  configure  the
              hardware  clock  to tick localtime, instead of the more proper and less error-prone
              UTC time, many users end up in the situation where the system clock is  incorrectly
              set at the time when e2fsck is run.

              Historically  this  was usually due to some distributions having buggy init scripts
              and/or installers that didn't correctly  detect  this  case  and  take  appropriate
              countermeasures.   Unfortunately, this is occasionally true even today, usually due
              to a buggy or misconfigured virtualization manager  or  the  installer  not  having
              access to a network time server during the installation process.  So by default, we
              allow the superblock times to be fudged by up to 24 hours.  This can be disabled by
              setting  accept_time_fudge to the boolean value of false.  This setting defaults to

              The e2fsck(8) program has some heuristics that assume  that  the  system  clock  is
              correct.  In addition, many system programs make similar assumptions.  For example,
              the UUID library depends on time not going backwards in order for it to be able  to
              make  its  guarantees  about  issuing universally unique ID's.  Systems with broken
              system clocks, are well, broken.  However, broken system  clocks,  particularly  in
              embedded  systems, do exist.  E2fsck will attempt to use heuristics to determine if
              the time can not be trusted; and to skip time-based checks if  this  is  true.   If
              this  boolean  is set to true, then e2fsck will always assume that the system clock
              can not be trusted.

              This  boolean  relation  is  an   alias   for   accept_time_fudge   for   backwards
              compatibility;  it  used to be that the behavior defined by accept_time_fudge above
              defaulted to false, and buggy_init_scripts would enable superblock time field to be
              wrong by up to 24 hours.  When we changed the default, we also renamed this boolean
              relation to accept_time_fudge.

              This boolean relation controls whether or not e2fsck(8) will  offer  to  clear  the
              test_fs  flag  if  the  ext4 filesystem is available on the system.  It defaults to

              This boolean relation controls whether  or  not  the  interval  between  filesystem
              checks  (either  based on time or number of mounts) should be doubled if the system
              is running on battery.  This setting defaults to true.

              When e2fsck(8) repacks a indexed directory, reserve  the  specified  percentage  of
              empty  space  in  each  leaf  nodes  so  that a few new entries can be added to the
              directory without  splitting  leaf  nodes,  so  that  the  average  fill  ratio  of
              directories  can  be  maintained  at a higher, more efficient level.  This relation
              defaults to 20 percent.

              If this boolean relation is true, trade off using memory for speed when checking  a
              file  system  with  a  large  number  of  hard-linked  files.  The amount of memory
              required is proportional to the number of inodes in the  file  system.   For  large
              file  systems,  this  can  be gigabytes of memory.  (For example a 40TB file system
              with 2.8  billion  inodes  will  consume  an  additional  5.7  GB  memory  if  this
              optimization is enabled.)  This setting defaults to false.

              If  the  log_filename relation contains a relative pathname, then the log file will
              be placed in the directory named by the log_dir relation.

              This relation contains an alternate directory that will be used  if  the  directory
              specified by log_dir is not available or is not writable.

              If  this  boolean relation is true, them if the directories specified by log_dir or
              log_dir_fallback are not available or are not yet writable, e2fsck  will  save  the
              output in a memory buffer, and a child process will periodically test to see if the
              log directory has  become  available  after  the  boot  sequence  has  mounted  the
              requested  file  system  for  reading/writing.   This  implements the functionality
              provided by logsave(8) for e2fsck log files.

              This relation specifies the file name where a  copy  of  e2fsck's  output  will  be
              written.    If  certain problem reports are suppressed using the max_count_problems
              relation, (or on a per-problem basis using the max_count relation), the full set of
              problem  reports will be written to the log file.  The filename may contain various
              percent-expressions (%D, %T, %N, etc.) which will be expanded so that the file name
              for  the  log  file can include things like date, time, device name, and other run-
              time parameters.  See the LOGGING section for more details.

              This relation specifies the maximum number of problem reports of a particular  type
              will  be  printed  to  stdout  before  further  problem  reports  of  that type are
              squelched.  This can be useful if the console is slow (i.e., connected to a  serial
              port)  and so a large amount of output could end up delaying the boot process for a
              long time (potentially hours).

              If this boolean relation is true, do not offer  to  optimize  the  extent  tree  by
              reducing the tree's width or depth.  This setting defaults to false.

              Use  this  percentage of memory to try to read in metadata blocks ahead of the main
              e2fsck thread.  This should reduce  run  times,  depending  on  the  speed  of  the
              underlying  storage  and  the  amount of free memory.  There is no default, but see
              readahead_kb for more details.

              Use this amount of memory to read in metadata blocks ahead  of  the  main  checking
              thread.   Setting this value to zero disables readahead entirely.  By default, this
              is set the size of two block groups' inode tables (typically 4MiB on a regular ext4
              filesystem); if this amount is more than 1/50th of total physical memory, readahead
              is disabled.

              If this boolean relation is true, e2fsck will print the  file  system  features  as
              part of its verbose reporting (i.e., if the -v option is specified)

              If  this boolean relation is true, e2fsck will run as if the options -tt are always
              specified.  This will cause e2fsck to print timing statistics on  a  pass  by  pass
              basis for full file system checks.

              If  this  boolean  relation  is true, e2fsck will run as if the option -v is always
              specified.  This will cause e2fsck to print some additional information at the  end
              of each full file system check.

THE [defaults] STANZA

       The following relations are defined in the [defaults] stanza.

              This relation specifies the directory where the undo file should be stored.  It can
              be overridden via the E2FSPROGS_UNDO_DIR environment variable.   If  the  directory
              location is set to the value none, e2fsck will not create an undo file.

THE [problems] STANZA

       Each  tag  in  the  [problems]  stanza  names a problem code specified with a leading "0x"
       followed by six hex digits.  The value of the tag is a subsection where the  relations  in
       that subsection override the default treatment of that particular problem code.

       Note that inappropriate settings in this stanza may cause e2fsck to behave incorrectly, or
       even crash.  Most system administrators should not  be  making  changes  to  this  section
       without referring to source code.

       Within each problem code's subsection, the following tags may be used:

              This   relation   allows   the  message  which  is  printed  when  this  filesystem
              inconsistency is detected to be overridden.

              This boolean relation overrides  the  default  behavior  controlling  whether  this
              filesystem  problem  should  be automatically fixed when e2fsck is running in preen

              This integer relation  overrides  the  max_count_problems  parameter  (set  in  the
              options section) for this particular problem.

       no_ok  This boolean relation overrides the default behavior determining whether or not the
              filesystem will be marked as inconsistent if the user declines to fix the  reported

              This  boolean  relation  overrides  whether the default answer for this problem (or
              question) should be "no".

              This boolean relation overrides the default behavior controlling whether or not the
              description for this filesystem problem should be suppressed when e2fsck is running
              in preen mode.

              This boolean relation overrides the default behavior controlling whether or not the
              description  for this filesystem problem should be suppressed when a problem forced
              not to be fixed, either because e2fsck is run with the -n  option  or  because  the
              force_no flag has been set for the problem.

              This  boolean option, if set to true, forces a problem to never be fixed.  That is,
              it will be as if the user problem responds 'no' to the  question  of  'should  this
              problem  be fixed?'.  The force_no option even overrides the -y option given on the
              command-line (just for the specific problem, of course).

              This boolean option, it set to true, marks the problem as one  where  if  the  user
              gives  permission  to  make  the  requested  change, it does not mean that the file
              system had a problem which has since been fixed.  This  is  used  for  requests  to
              optimize the file system's data structure, such as pruning an extent tree.

THE [scratch_files] STANZA

       The following relations are defined in the [scratch_files] stanza.

              If  the  directory named by this relation exists and is writeable, then e2fsck will
              attempt to use this directory to store scratch files  instead  of  using  in-memory
              data structures.

              If  this relation is set, then in-memory data structures will be used if the number
              of directories in the filesystem are fewer than amount specified.

              This relation controls whether or not the scratch file directory is used instead of
              an in-memory data structure for directory information.  It defaults to true.

       icount This relation controls whether or not the scratch file directory is used instead of
              an in-memory data structure when tracking inode counts.  It defaults to true.


       E2fsck has the facility to save the information from an e2fsck run in a directory so  that
       a  system  administrator  can review its output at their leisure.  This allows information
       captured during the automatic e2fsck preen run, as well as a manually started e2fsck  run,
       to  be  saved  for  posterity.   This facility is controlled by the log_filename, log_dir,
       log_dir_fallback, and log_dir_wait relations in the [options] stanza.

       The filename in log_filename may contain the following percent-expressions  that  will  be
       expanded as follows.

       %d     The current day of the month

       %D     The current date; this is a equivalent of %Y%m%d

       %h     The hostname of the system.

       %H     The current hour in 24-hour format (00..23)

       %m     The current month as a two-digit number (01..12)

       %M     The current minute (00..59)

       %N     The  name  of  the  block  device  containing  the  file system, with any directory
              pathname stripped off.

       %p     The pid of the e2fsck process

       %s     The current time expressed as the number of seconds since 1970-01-01 00:00:00 UTC

       %S     The current second (00..59)

       %T     The current time; this is equivalent of %H%M%S

       %u     The name of the user running e2fsck.

       %U     This percent expression does not expand  to  anything,  but  it  signals  that  any
              following  date  or time expressions should be expressed in UTC time instead of the
              local timezone.

       %y     The last two digits of the current year (00..99)

       %Y     The current year (i.e., 2012).


       The following recipe will prevent e2fsck from aborting during  the  boot  process  when  a
       filesystem  contains  orphaned  files.   (Of course, this is not always a good idea, since
       critical files that are needed for the security of the system could potentially end up  in
       lost+found,  and  starting  the  system  without first having a system administrator check
       things out may be dangerous.)

                 0x040002 = {
                      preen_ok = true
                      description = "@u @i %i.  "

       The following recipe will  cause  an  e2fsck  logfile  to  be  written  to  the  directory
       /var/log/e2fsck,  with  a  filename  that  contains  the  device name, the hostname of the
       system, the date,  and  time:  e.g.,  "e2fsck-sda3.server.INFO.20120314-112142".   If  the
       directory  containing  /var/log  is  located  on  the  root file system which is initially
       mounted read-only, then the output will be saved in memory and written out once  the  root
       file  system  has been remounted read/write.   To avoid too much detail from being written
       to the serial console (which could potentially slow down the boot sequence), only print no
       more than 16 instances of each type of file system corruption.

                 max_count_problems = 16
                 log_dir = /var/log/e2fsck
                 log_filename = e2fsck-%N.%h.INFO.%D-%T
                 log_dir_wait = true


              The configuration file for e2fsck(8).