files that grow like topsy

Charles Hallenbeck hallenbeck at
Thu Feb 14 07:40:26 EST 2002

I have been concerned about some files in Linux which appear to
grow and are never automatically shrunk, such as
/var/log/messages and /var/log/wtmp. I have made a crontab entry
that empties the messages file once a month, but I am wondering
if anyone knows whether it is safe to do the same for wtmp. Right
now that file is over 5 MB in size on my system and contains a
record of all my logins. I could just zap it and see what happens
I guess, but I wonder if someone wiser than I can tell me ahead
of time what would happen and maybe save me some grief.

Thanks - Chuck

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