Disk space usage for your website is more than the content you see on the page. It can be surprising how much disk space you actually use for each of your websites, and how much back-ups, logs and duplicate content play a part in space usage. If left alone for a long time, you often find it accumulates very quickly, and your allocated quota is filled before you know it.

Luckily, there are simple ways to keep this in check. To perform an audit of the disk space in Plesk, select the domain, then go to Report → Select Full Report (if Summary Report is showing). This will give you a good snapshot of the disk space usage for the domain. The following are possible problems and solutions:

Large backups left on account

It’s recommended that you download and store backups locally once they have been generated, and delete your old backup files from the server. You can always download a copy first if necessary. Backups are a big perpetrator of unnecessary disk space usage, yet a common one people overlook! In some cases, you can make changes to your site so subsequent backups won’t be generated (e.g. cleaning up emails and logs so they’re no longer backed up).

Excessively large mail account(s)

If you log into your webmail account and simple delete your emails, this would solve the problem, but you’ll have thousands of emails and this would be very time consuming. A more practical solution is to set up POP email accounts and ensure that the setting to delete emails from the server is enabled.

Disk space used by httpdocs

Use Plesk’s File Manager (click on the domain you want then the “Files” tab) to open up httpdocs and calculate the size of its contents. Select the files in the httpdocs folder, click “More” and “Calculate Size”. It may be that something here can be cleaned out – usually the /var folder will contain cache or large logs.

Excessive disk space used by log files and statistical reports

View the logs of the domain you wish to check. Check the box(es) and click “Remove Selected” to get rid of some or all logs. You can also use the Log Rotation settings to decrease the maximum size of log files and stop them getting too big again.

Excessively large Magento database(s)

If you use Magento, you may have noticed that backups build up rapidly. Implementing our log and var cleaning Cron task script can help.

Redundant images left in ‘media’ folder of Magento

Every time you add or delete products from your Magento store, associated images aren’t automatically deleted from your hosting account. We would recommend you consider the Image Clean Magento extension, which we’ve written a guide to.

Large Magento cache

Plesk versions 9 and later do not contain a button for clearing the Magento Cache, but it can be cleared manually by navigating to /var/cache/ and clearing all the contents contained in this folder.

Extracted Magento plugins left on account

Log into your Plesk Control Panel, browse to your Magento directory, go to ‘downloader’ →  ‘pearlib’ → ‘download’ and delete the content of this folder.

We at NuBlue hosting help our clients help themselves, with hundreds of guides and a forum. Please contact us if you need advice!