find - search for files in a directory hierarchy
find [path...] [expression]
This manual page documents the GNU version of find. find searches the
directory tree rooted at each given file name by evaluating the given
expression from left to right, according to the rules of precedence
(see section OPERATORS), until the outcome is known (the left hand side
is false for and operations, true for or), at which point find moves on
to the next file name.
The first argument that begins with `-', `(', `)', `,', or `!' is taken
to be the beginning of the expression; any arguments before it are
paths to search, and any arguments after it are the rest of the expres-
sion. If no paths are given, the current directory is used. If no
expression is given, the expression `-print' is used.
find exits with status 0 if all files are processed successfully,
greater than 0 if errors occur.
The expression is made up of options (which affect overall operation
rather than the processing of a specific file, and always return true),
tests (which return a true or false value), and actions (which have
side effects and return a true or false value), all separated by opera-
tors. -and is assumed where the operator is omitted. If the expres-
sion contains no actions other than -prune, -print is performed on all
files for which the expression is true.
All options always return true. They always take effect, rather than
being processed only when their place in the expression is reached.
Therefore, for clarity, it is best to place them at the beginning of
Measure times (for -amin, -atime, -cmin, -ctime, -mmin, and
-mtime) from the beginning of today rather than from 24 hours
-depth Process each directory's contents before the directory itself.
Dereference symbolic links. Implies -noleaf.
Print a summary of the command-line usage of find and exit.
Descend at most levels (a non-negative integer) levels of direc-
tories below the command line arguments. `-maxdepth 0' means
only apply the tests and actions to the command line arguments.
Do not optimize by assuming that directories contain 2 fewer
subdirectories than their hard link count. This option is
needed when searching filesystems that do not follow the Unix
directory-link convention, such as CD-ROM or MS-DOS filesystems
or AFS volume mount points. Each directory on a normal Unix
filesystem has at least 2 hard links: its name and its `.'
entry. Additionally, its subdirectories (if any) each have a
`..' entry linked to that directory. When find is examining a
directory, after it has statted 2 fewer subdirectories than the
directory's link count, it knows that the rest of the entries in
the directory are non-directories (`leaf' files in the directory
tree). If only the files' names need to be examined, there is
no need to stat them; this gives a significant increase in
Print the find version number and exit.
-xdev Don't descend directories on other filesystems.
Numeric arguments can be specified as
+n for greater than n,
-n for less than n,
n for exactly n.
File was last accessed n minutes ago.
File was last accessed more recently than file was modified.
-anewer is affected by -follow only if -follow comes before
-anewer on the command line.
File was last accessed n*24 hours ago.
File's status was last changed n minutes ago.
File's status was last changed more recently than file was modi-
fied. -cnewer is affected by -follow only if -follow comes
before -cnewer on the command line.
File's status was last changed n*24 hours ago.
-empty File is empty and is either a regular file or a directory.
-false Always false.
File belongs to group gname (numeric group ID allowed).
Like -lname, but the match is case insensitive.
Like -name, but the match is case insensitive. For example, the
patterns `fo*' and `F??' match the file names `Foo', `FOO',
`foo', `fOo', etc.
File has inode number n.
Like -path, but the match is case insensitive.
Like -regex, but the match is case insensitive.
File has n links.
File is a symbolic link whose contents match shell pattern pat-
tern. The metacharacters do not treat `/' or `.' specially.
File's data was last modified n minutes ago.
File's data was last modified n*24 hours ago.
Base of file name (the path with the leading directories
removed) matches shell pattern pattern. The metacharacters
(`*', `?', and `') do not match a `.' at the start of the base
name. To ignore a directory and the files under it, use -prune;
see an example in the description of -path.
File was modified more recently than file. -newer is affected
by -follow only if -follow comes before -newer on the command
No user corresponds to file's numeric user ID.
No group corresponds to file's numeric group ID.
File name matches shell pattern pattern. The metacharacters do
not treat `/' or `.' specially; so, for example,
find . -path './sr*sc'
will print an entry for a directory called './src/misc' (if one
Symbolic modes use mode 0 as a point of departure.
All of the permission bits mode are set for the file.
Any of the permission bits mode are set for the file.
File name matches regular expression pattern. This is a match
on the whole path, not a search. For example, to match a file
named `./fubar3', you can use the regular expression `.*bar.' or
`.*b.*3', but not `b.*r3'.
File uses n units of space. The units are 512-byte blocks by
default or if `b' follows n, bytes if `c' follows n, kilobytes
if `k' follows n, or 2-byte words if `w' follows n. The size
does not count indirect blocks, but it does count blocks in
sparse files that are not actually allocated.
-true Always true.
File is of type c:
b block (buffered) special
c character (unbuffered) special
p named pipe (FIFO)
f regular file
l symbolic link
D door (Solaris)
-uid n File's numeric user ID is n.
File was last accessed n days after its status was last changed.
File is owned by user uname (numeric user ID allowed).
The same as -type unless the file is a symbolic link. For sym-
bolic links: if -follow has not been given, true if the file is
a link to a file of type c; if -follow has been given, true if c
is `l'. In other words, for symbolic links, -xtype checks the
type of the file that -type does not check.
protect them from expansion by the shell. The command is exe-
cuted in the starting directory.
True; like -ls but write to file like -fprint.
True; print the full file name into file file. If file does not
exist when find is run, it is created; if it does exist, it is
truncated. The file names ``/dev/stdout'' and ``/dev/stderr''
are handled specially; they refer to the standard output and
standard error output, respectively.
True; like -print0 but write to file like -fprint.
-fprintf file format
True; like -printf but write to file like -fprint.
-ok command ;
Like -exec but ask the user first (on the standard input); if
the response does not start with `y' or `Y', do not run the com-
mand, and return false.
-print True; print the full file name on the standard output, followed
by a newline.
True; print the full file name on the standard output, followed
by a null character. This allows file names that contain new-
lines to be correctly interpreted by programs that process the
True; print format on the standard output, interpreting `\'
escapes and `%' directives. Field widths and precisions can be
specified as with the `printf' C function. Unlike -print,
-printf does not add a newline at the end of the string. The
escapes and directives are:
\a Alarm bell.
\c Stop printing from this format immediately and flush the
\f Form feed.
\r Carriage return.
\t Horizontal tab.
\v Vertical tab.
%a File's last access time in the format returned by the C
%Ak File's last access time in the format specified by k,
which is either `@' or a directive for the C `strftime'
function. The possible values for k are listed below;
some of them might not be available on all systems, due
to differences in `strftime' between systems.
@ seconds since Jan. 1, 1970, 00:00 GMT.
H hour (00..23)
I hour (01..12)
k hour ( 0..23)
l hour ( 1..12)
M minute (00..59)
p locale's AM or PM
r time, 12-hour (hh:mm:ss [AP]M)
S second (00..61)
T time, 24-hour (hh:mm:ss)
X locale's time representation (H:M:S)
Z time zone (e.g., EDT), or nothing if no time zone
a locale's abbreviated weekday name (Sun..Sat)
A locale's full weekday name, variable length (Sun-
b locale's abbreviated month name (Jan..Dec)
B locale's full month name, variable length (Jan-
c locale's date and time (Sat Nov 04 12:02:33 EST
d day of month (01..31)
D date (mm/dd/yy)
h same as b
W week number of year with Monday as first day of
x locale's date representation (mm/dd/yy)
y last two digits of year (00..99)
Y year (1970...)
%b File's size in 512-byte blocks (rounded up).
%c File's last status change time in the format returned by
the C `ctime' function.
%Ck File's last status change time in the format specified by
k, which is the same as for %A.
%d File's depth in the directory tree; 0 means the file is a
command line argument.
%f File's name with any leading directories removed (only
the last element).
%F Type of the filesystem the file is on; this value can be
used for -fstype.
%g File's group name, or numeric group ID if the group has
%G File's numeric group ID.
%h Leading directories of file's name (all but the last ele-
%H Command line argument under which file was found.
%i File's inode number (in decimal).
%k File's size in 1K blocks (rounded up).
%l Object of symbolic link (empty string if file is not a
%m File's permission bits (in octal).
%n Number of hard links to file.
%p File's name.
%P File's name with the name of the command line argument
under which it was found removed.
%s File's size in bytes.
%t File's last modification time in the format returned by
the C `ctime' function.
(but the other character is printed).
-prune If -depth is not given, true; do not descend the current direc-
If -depth is given, false; no effect.
-ls True; list current file in `ls -dils' format on standard output.
The block counts are of 1K blocks, unless the environment vari-
able POSIXLY_CORRECT is set, in which case 512-byte blocks are
Listed in order of decreasing precedence:
( expr )
! expr True if expr is false.
Same as ! expr.
And (implied); expr2 is not evaluated if expr1 is false.
expr1 -a expr2
Same as expr1 expr2.
expr1 -and expr2
Same as expr1 expr2.
expr1 -o expr2
Or; expr2 is not evaluated if expr1 is true.
expr1 -or expr2
Same as expr1 -o expr2.
expr1 , expr2
List; both expr1 and expr2 are always evaluated. The value of
expr1 is discarded; the value of the list is the value of expr2.
locate(1L), locatedb(5L), updatedb(1L), xargs(1L) Finding Files (on-
line in Info, or printed)