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FIND (1) | General commands | Unix Manual Pages | :man

NAME

find - walk a file hierarchy

CONTENTS

Synopsis
Description
Primaries
Operators
Environment
Examples
Compatibility
See Also
Standards
History
Bugs

SYNOPSIS

find [-H-| -L -| -P ] [-EXdsx] [-f pathname] [pathname ...] expression

DESCRIPTION

The find utility recursively descends the directory tree for each pathname listed, evaluating an expression (composed of the "primaries" and "operands" listed below) in terms of each file in the tree.

The options are as follows:

-E Interpret regular expressions followed by -regex and -iregex options as extended (modern) regular expressions rather than basic regular expressions (BRE’s). The re_format(7) manual page fully describes both formats.
-H Cause the file information and file type (see stat(2)) returned for each symbolic link specified on the command line to be those of the file referenced by the link, not the link itself. If the referenced file does not exist, the file information and type will be for the link itself. File information of all symbolic links not on the command line is that of the link itself.
-L Cause the file information and file type (see stat(2)) returned for each symbolic link to be those of the file referenced by the link, not the link itself. If the referenced file does not exist, the file information and type will be for the link itself.

This option is equivalent to the deprecated -follow primary.

-P Cause the file information and file type (see stat(2)) returned for each symbolic link to be those of the link itself. This is the default.
-X Permit find to be safely used in conjunction with xargs(1). If a file name contains any of the delimiting characters used by xargs(1), a diagnostic message is displayed on standard error, and the file is skipped. The delimiting characters include single (""’ "") and double (""" "") quotes, backslash ("\"), space, tab and newline characters.

However, you may wish to consider the -print0 primary in conjunction with "xargs-0 " as an effective alternative.

-d Cause find to perform a depth-first traversal, i.e., directories are visited in post-order and all entries in a directory will be acted on before the directory itself. By default, find visits directories in pre-order, i.e., before their contents. Note, the default is not a breadth-first traversal.

This option is equivalent to the -depth primary of -p1003.1-2001. -d can be useful when find is used with cpio(1) to process files that are contained in directories with unusual permissions. It ensures that you have write permission while you are placing files in a directory, then sets the directory’s permissions as the last thing.

-f Specify a file hierarchy for find to traverse. File hierarchies may also be specified as the operands immediately following the options.
-s Cause find to traverse the file hierarchies in lexicographical order, i.e., alphabetical order within each directory. Note: ‘find -s’ and ‘"find | sort"’ may give different results.
-x Prevent find from descending into directories that have a device number different than that of the file from which the descent began.

This option is equivalent to the deprecated -xdev primary.

PRIMARIES

-acl May be used in conjunction with other options to locate files with extended ACLs. See acl(3) for more information.
-amin n
True if the difference between the file last access time and the time find was started, rounded up to the next full minute, is n minutes.
-anewer file
Same as -neweram.
-atime n [smhdw]
If no units are specified, this primary evaluates to true if the difference between the file last access time and the time find was started, rounded up to the next full 24-hour period, is n 24-hour periods.

If units are specified, this primary evaluates to true if the difference between the file last access time and the time find was started is exactly n units. Possible time units are as follows:

s second
m minute (60 seconds)
h hour (60 minutes)
d day (24 hours)
w week (7 days)

Any number of units may be combined in one -atime argument, for example, ""-atime -1h30m"". Units are probably only useful when used in conjunction with the + or - modifier.

-cmin n
True if the difference between the time of last change of file status information and the time find was started, rounded up to the next full minute, is n minutes.
-cnewer file
Same as -newercm.
-ctime n [smhdw]
If no units are specified, this primary evaluates to true if the difference between the time of last change of file status information and the time find was started, rounded up to the next full 24-hour period, is n 24-hour periods.

If units are specified, this primary evaluates to true if the difference between the time of last change of file status information and the time find was started is exactly n units. Please refer to the -atime primary description for information on supported time units.

-delete
Delete found files and/or directories. Always returns true. This executes from the current working directory as find recurses down the tree. It will not attempt to delete a filename with a "/" character in its pathname relative to "." for security reasons. Depth-first traversal processing is implied by this option.
-depth
Always true; same as the -d option.
-depth n
True if the depth of the file relative to the starting point of the traversal is n.
-empty
True if the current file or directory is empty.
-exec utility[argument ...;]
True if the program named utility returns a zero value as its exit status. Optional arguments may be passed to the utility. The expression must be terminated by a semicolon (";"). If you invoke find from a shell you may need to quote the semicolon if the shell would otherwise treat it as a control operator. If the string "{}" appears anywhere in the utility name or the arguments it is replaced by the pathname of the current file. Utility will be executed from the directory from which find was executed. Utility and arguments are not subject to the further expansion of shell patterns and constructs.
-exec utility[argument ...{} +]
Same as -exec, except that "{}" is replaced with as many pathnames as possible for each invocation of utility. This behaviour is similar to that of xargs(1).
-execdir utility[argument ...;]
The -execdir primary is identical to the -exec primary with the exception that utility will be executed from the directory that holds the current file. The filename substituted for the string "{}" is not qualified.
-flags[- | +flags, notflags]
The flags are specified using symbolic names (see chflags(1)). Those with the "no" prefix (except "nodump") are said to be notflags. Flags in flags are checked to be set, and flags in notflags are checked to be not set. Note that this is different from -perm, which only allows the user to specify mode bits that are set.

If flags are preceded by a dash ("-"), this primary evaluates to true if at least all of the bits in flags and none of the bits in notflags are set in the file’s flags bits. If flags are preceded by a plus ("+"), this primary evaluates to true if any of the bits in flags is set in the file’s flags bits, or any of the bits in notflags is not set in the file’s flags bits. Otherwise, this primary evaluates to true if the bits in flags exactly match the file’s flags bits, and none of the flags bits match those of notflags.

-fstype type
True if the file is contained in a file system of type type. The sysctl(8) command can be used to find out the types of file systems that are available on the system:

"sysctl vfs"

In addition, there are two pseudo-types, "local" and "rdonly". The former matches any file system physically mounted on the system where the find is being executed and the latter matches any file system which is mounted read-only.

-group gname
True if the file belongs to the group gname. If gname is numeric and there is no such group name, then gname is treated as a group ID.
-iname pattern
Like -name, but the match is case insensitive.
-inum n
True if the file has inode number n.
-ipath pattern
Like -path, but the match is case insensitive.
-iregex pattern
Like -regex, but the match is case insensitive.
-links n
True if the file has n links.
-ls This primary always evaluates to true. The following information for the current file is written to standard output: its inode number, size in 512-byte blocks, file permissions, number of hard links, owner, group, size in bytes, last modification time, and pathname. If the file is a block or character special file, the major and minor numbers will be displayed instead of the size in bytes. If the file is a symbolic link, the pathname of the linked-to file will be displayed preceded by "->". The format is identical to that produced by
.Bk -words ls-dgils .
.Ek
-maxdepth n
Always true; descend at most n directory levels below the command line arguments. If any -maxdepth primary is specified, it applies to the entire expression even if it would not normally be evaluated. -maxdepth 0 limits the whole search to the command line arguments.
-mindepth n
Always true; do not apply any tests or actions at levels less than n. If any -mindepth primary is specified, it applies to the entire expression even if it would not normally be evaluated. -mindepth 1 processes all but the command line arguments.
-mmin n
True if the difference between the file last modification time and the time find was started, rounded up to the next full minute, is n minutes.
-mnewer file
Same as -newer.
-mtime n [smhdw]
If no units are specified, this primary evaluates to true if the difference between the file last modification time and the time find was started, rounded up to the next full 24-hour period, is n 24-hour periods.

If units are specified, this primary evaluates to true if the difference between the file last modification time and the time find was started is exactly n units. Please refer to the -atime primary description for information on supported time units.

-name pattern
True if the last component of the pathname being examined matches pattern. Special shell pattern matching characters "([", "]", "*", and "?") may be used as part of pattern. These characters may be matched explicitly by escaping them with a backslash ("\").
-newer file
True if the current file has a more recent last modification time than file.
-newer X Y file
True if the current file has a more recent last access time ( X = a), change time ( X = c), or modification time ( X = m) than the last access time ( Y = a), change time ( Y = c), or modification time ( Y = m) of file. In addition, if Y = t, then file is instead interpreted as a direct date specification of the form understood by cvs(1). Note that -newermm is equivalent to -newer.
-nogroup
True if the file belongs to an unknown group.
-nouser
True if the file belongs to an unknown user.
-ok utility[argument ...;]
The -ok primary is identical to the -exec primary with the exception that find requests user affirmation for the execution of the utility by printing a message to the terminal and reading a response. If the response is not affirmative ‘(y’ in the "POSIX" locale), the command is not executed and the value of the -ok expression is false.
-okdir utility[argument ...;]
The -okdir primary is identical to the -execdir primary with the same exception as described for the -ok primary.
-path pattern
True if the pathname being examined matches pattern. Special shell pattern matching characters "([", "]", "*", and "?") may be used as part of pattern. These characters may be matched explicitly by escaping them with a backslash ("\"). Slashes ("/") are treated as normal characters and do not have to be matched explicitly.
-perm[- | +mode]
The mode may be either symbolic (see chmod(1)) or an octal number. If the mode is symbolic, a starting value of zero is assumed and the mode sets or clears permissions without regard to the process’ file mode creation mask. If the mode is octal, only bits 07777 (S_ISUID | S_ISGID | S_ISTXT | S_IRWXU | S_IRWXG | S_IRWXO) of the file’s mode bits participate in the comparison. If the mode is preceded by a dash ("-"), this primary evaluates to true if at least all of the bits in the mode are set in the file’s mode bits. If the mode is preceded by a plus ("+"), this primary evaluates to true if any of the bits in the mode are set in the file’s mode bits. Otherwise, this primary evaluates to true if the bits in the mode exactly match the file’s mode bits. Note, the first character of a symbolic mode may not be a dash ("-").
-print
This primary always evaluates to true. It prints the pathname of the current file to standard output. If none of -exec, -ls, -print0, or -ok is specified, the given expression shall be effectively replaced by ( "given expression" ) -print.
-print0
This primary always evaluates to true. It prints the pathname of the current file to standard output, followed by an ASCII NUL character (character code 0).
-prune
This primary always evaluates to true. It causes find to not descend into the current file. Note, the -prune primary has no effect if the -d option was specified.
-regex pattern
True if the whole path of the file matches pattern using regular expression. To match a file named "./foo/xyzzy", you can use the regular expression "".*/[xyz]*"" or "".*/foo/.*"", but not "xyzzy" or "/foo/".
-size n [c]
True if the file’s size, rounded up, in 512-byte blocks is n. If n is followed by a c, then the primary is true if the file’s size is n bytes (characters).
-type t
True if the file is of the specified type. Possible file types are as follows:

b block special
c character special
d directory
f regular file
l symbolic link
p FIFO
s socket
-user uname
True if the file belongs to the user uname. If uname is numeric and there is no such user name, then uname is treated as a user ID.

All primaries which take a numeric argument allow the number to be preceded by a plus sign ("+") or a minus sign ("-"). A preceding plus sign means "more than n", a preceding minus sign means "less than n" and neither means "exactly n".

OPERATORS

The primaries may be combined using the following operators. The operators are listed in order of decreasing precedence.

( expression ) This evaluates to true if the parenthesized expression evaluates to true.

! expression
-false expression
-not expression
This is the unary NOT operator. It evaluates to true if the expression is false.

expression -and expression
expression expression
The -and operator is the logical AND operator. As it is implied by the juxtaposition of two expressions it does not have to be specified. The expression evaluates to true if both expressions are true. The second expression is not evaluated if the first expression is false.

expression -or expression
The -or operator is the logical OR operator. The expression evaluates to true if either the first or the second expression is true. The second expression is not evaluated if the first expression is true.

All operands and primaries must be separate arguments to find. Primaries which themselves take arguments expect each argument to be a separate argument to find.

ENVIRONMENT

The LANG, LC_ALL, LC_COLLATE, LC_CTYPE, LC_MESSAGES and LC_TIME environment variables affect the execution of the find utility as described in environ(7).

EXAMPLES

The following examples are shown as given to the shell:
"find / \! -name "*.c" -print"
Print out a list of all the files whose names do not end in .c.
"find / -newer ttt -user wnj -print"
Print out a list of all the files owned by user "wnj" that are newer than the file ttt.
"find / \! \( -newer ttt -user wnj \) -print"
Print out a list of all the files which are not both newer than ttt and owned by "wnj".
"find / \( -newer ttt -or -user wnj \) -print"
Print out a list of all the files that are either owned by "wnj" or that are newer than ttt.
"find / -newerct ’1 minute ago’ -print"
Print out a list of all the files whose inode change time is more recent than the current time minus one minute.
"find / -type f -exec echo {} \;"
Use the echo(1) command to print out a list of all the files.
"find -L /usr/ports/packages -type l -delete"
Delete all broken symbolic links in /usr/ports/packages.
"find /usr/src -name CVS -prune -o -depth +6 -print"
Find files and directories that are at least seven levels deep in the working directory /usr/src.
"find /usr/src -name CVS -prune -o -mindepth 7 -print"
Is not equivalent to the previous example, since -prune is not evaluated below level seven.

COMPATIBILITY

The -follow primary is deprecated; the -L option should be used instead. See the
STANDARDS section below for details.

SEE ALSO

chflags(1), chmod(1), cvs(1), locate(1), whereis(1), which(1), xargs(1), stat(2), acl(3), fts(3), getgrent(3), getpwent(3), strmode(3), re_format(7), symlink(7)

STANDARDS

grep(1) sed(1)

HISTORY

BUGS

getopt(3)


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