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How to clean temporary files in /tmp and /var/tmp/

This document (000021386) is provided subject to the disclaimer at the end of this document.


SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 15


Disk usage in /tmp or /var/tmp grows as old files are not removed.


To change the behavior and remove files after one day, for example, an administrator can override the configuration by placing a file with the same filename in /etc/tmpfiles.d/ with the same configuration except giving an age argument, in this example, one day (1d):

cat << EOF > /etc/tmpfiles.d/fs-tmp.conf 
q /tmp 1777 root root 1d


The default configuration has no cleanup by age set up:

/usr/lib/tmpfiles.d/fs-tmp.conf:q /tmp 1777 root root -

Additional Information

To add debug, create a overwrite file with the following environment setting to the relevant service e.g. systemctl edit systemd-tmpfiles-setup for during boot, or systemctl edit systemd-tmpfiles-clean for daily cleanup:

 The service systemd-tmpfiles-setup runs during boot. The service systemd-tmpfiles-clean runs by the timer systemd-tmpfiles-clean.timer.


This Support Knowledgebase provides a valuable tool for SUSE customers and parties interested in our products and solutions to acquire information, ideas and learn from one another. Materials are provided for informational, personal or non-commercial use within your organization and are presented "AS IS" WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND.

  • Document ID:000021386
  • Creation Date: 14-Mar-2024
  • Modified Date:14-Mar-2024
    • SUSE Linux Enterprise Server

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