Chapter 9. Finding Files with find

How to Use find

The utility find is one of the most useful and important of the Unix utilities. It finds files that match a given set of parameters, ranging from the file’s name to its modification date. In this chapter, we’ll be looking at many of the things it can do. As an introduction, here’s a quick summary of its features and basic operators:

% find 
               path operators

where path is one or more directories in which find will begin to search and operators (or, in more customary jargon, options) tell find which files you’re interested in. The operators are as follows:

-name filename

Find files with the given filename. This is the most commonly used operator. filename may include wildcards, but if it does, they must be quoted to prevent the shell from interpreting the wildcards.

-perm mode

Find files with the given access mode. You must give the access mode in octal.

-type c

Find the files of the given type, specified by c. c is a one-letter code; for example, f for a plain file, b for a block special file, l for a symbolic link, and so forth.

-user name

Find files belonging to user name. name may also be a user ID number.

-group name

Find files belonging to group name. name may also be a group ID number.

-size n

Find files that are n blocks long. A block usually equals 512 bytes. The notation + n says “find files that are over n blocks long.” The notation n c says “find files that are n characters long.” Can you guess what + n c means?

-inum n

Find files with the ...

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