/var/log/journal huge/too large solution in Debian Mint Ubuntu Linux Howot Fix

Is your /var/log/journal overweight and bloated?  For example a decent install of Debian 11 with most applications and services ends up being about 4.9G with the journal taking a few gigs. 

du -hs /var/log/journal/
1.3G    /var/log/journal/

By default in a lot of distributions there is no maximum size so it will keep growing.  This is especially problematic for embedded distributions and devices, but is also a huge waste of space.  In low IO storage devices it can actually create huge IOWait as well (eg. if you are running off a USB stick).

Edit this file: 


Create a new line under the commented out #SystemMaxUse= line

And set it like this:


Where 50M is going to be the maximum size of /var/log/journal

It should now look like below.




Final Step

Restart journald to apply the new smaller max setting:

systemctl restart systemd-journald

du now shows the size is the maximum you set:

du -hs /var/log/journal/
49M    /var/log/journal/


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