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My Raspberry pi4's file system is getting filled up with log messages from the default desktop file manager, pcmanfm, which is writing 100 megs of errors to its run log (in ~/.cache) per second seemingly because it is confused about a USB thumb drive.

~/.cache/lxsession/LXDE-pi/run.log   <-- this is 20GB 

Is no one doing any maintenance of pcmanfm? It seems like a horrible bug that will require that I remove it. I've encountered this bug multiple times over the last few months. What is the alternative to pcmanfm?

UPDATE

After alleviating the crazy run.log writing by pcmanfm, I discovered that it was also filling up my hard drive by writing other errors to the xsession log.

** (pcmanfm:1861): WARNING **: 11:05:09.336: got unmount for unknown desktop item
** (pcmanfm:1861): WARNING **: 11:05:09.336: got unmount for unknown desktop item
** (pcmanfm:1861): WARNING **: 11:05:09.336: got unmount for unknown desktop item
** (pcmanfm:1861): WARNING **: 11:05:09.336: got unmount for unknown desktop item
** (pcmanfm:1861): WARNING **: 11:05:09.336: got unmount for unknown desktop item

I don't why such garbage software could be widely used-- it is a part of Raspberry pi OS-- but clearly I will have to uninstall it again.

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  • You should be able to install other file managers, including ones from other DEs (the default one is essentially LXDE, which is where pcmanfm is from), eg., Nautilus (which apparently has had its name changed) -- I can't say for sure, but probably. In any case, if not Nautilus then something else should work (maybe Dolphin. They will likely drag in a bunch of prerequisite packages.
    – goldilocks
    Oct 1 '20 at 15:41
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Something you can try, if you think this problem doesn't have other symptoms:

rm ~/.cache/lxsession/LXDE-pi/run.log
ln -s /dev/null ~/.cache/lxsession/LXDE-pi/run.log

You may have to shut down the GUI, do that in the console, and restart to get this to work. Stuff written to /dev/null is discarded harmlessly (it is always zero in size); ln -s creates a symlink.

What is the alternative to pcmanfm?

You should be able to install other file managers, including ones from other DEs. The default DE is essentially LXDE, which is where pcmanfm is from.

A couple of examples:

I can't promise anything about either of them but take a look and have a try. They will likely drag in a bunch of prerequisite packages but these will just take up some space on the SD card.

If you search around "linux file browser" you should find a bunch of things. You can then check with apt search for the repo package.

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  • Hi, that helped put out one fire, but now I have the same scenario somewhere else. Presumably it is pcmanfm again, which I had to reinstall to show files on my desktop.
    – wudude
    Oct 4 '20 at 17:40

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