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File Manipulation With Bash


By onjsdev

Mar 27th, 2024

Bash is a popular command-line interface widely used in Linux and macOS operating systems. It allows to interact with the operating system using simple commands in the terminal.

When it comes to interacting with the operating system using Bash, file-related tasks can be efficiently handled. In this article, we will explore some of the common file commands to perform some file operations.

Creating and Deleting Files

Creating and deleting files are basic file operations that can be easily performed using Bash commands.

Creating a File

To create a new file in Bash, you can use the touch command followed by the name of the file you want to create. For example, to create a file named example.txt, you can run the following command:

touch example.txt

This will create a new empty file named example.txt in the current working directory.

Deleting a File

To delete a file in Bash, you can use the rm command followed by the name of the file you want to delete. For example, to delete the example.txt file created earlier, you can run the following command:

rm example.txt

This will permanently delete the example.txt file.

Managing Directories With Bash

In addition to managing files, Bash commands can also be used to manage directories.

Creating a Directory

To create a new directory in Bash, you can use the mkdir command followed by the name of the directory you want to create. For example, to create a directory named mydir, you can run the following command:

mkdir mydir

This will create a new directory named mydir in the current working directory.

Deleting a Directory

To delete a directory in Bash, you can use the rmdir command followed by the name of the directory you want to delete. For example, to delete the mydir directory created earlier, you can run the following command:

rmdir mydir

This will delete the mydir directory if it is empty. If the directory is not empty, you can use the rm command with the -r option to delete the directory and its contents recursively.

rm -r mydir

Moving and Copying Files With Bash

Moving and copying files are common file operations that can be performed using Bash commands.

Moving a File

To move a file in Bash, you can use the mv command followed by the name of the file you want to move and the destination directory. For example, to move the example.txt file to a directory named mydir, you can run the following command:

mv example.txt mydir/

Renaming a File

To rename a file in Bash, you can use the mv command followed by the name of the file you want to rename and the new name you want to give the file. For example, to rename the example.txt file to newfile.txt, you can run the following command:

mv example.txt newfile.txt

Copying a File

To copy a file in Bash, you can use the cp command followed by the name of the file you want to copy and the destination directory. For example, to copy the example.txt file to a directory named mydir, you can run the following command:

cp example.txt mydir/

This will create a copy of the example.txt file in the mydir directory.

Listing Files With Bash

To list the files in a directory in Bash, you can use the ls command followed by the path of the directory you want to list. For example, to list the files in the current working directory, you can run the following command:

ls

This will list all the files in the current working directory.

You can also use various options with the ls command to customize the output. Here are some common options:

  • -l: Displays a long listing format that includes file permissions, ownership, size, and modification time.
  • -a: Displays all files, including hidden files that start with a dot (.) character.
  • -h: Displays file sizes in human-readable format (e.g., 1K, 2M, 3G).
  • -t: Sorts files by modification time, with the most recently modified files listed first.

For example, to list all files in the current working directory in a long format and sort them by modification time, you can run the following command:

ls -l -t

This will list all files in a long format and sort them by modification time, with the most recently modified files listed first.

Displaying File Contents With Bash

To display the contents of a file in Bash, you can use the cat command followed by the name of the file you want to display. For example, to display the contents of a file named example.txt, you can run the following command:

cat example.txt

This will display the contents of the example.txt file in your terminal.

You can also use various options with the cat command to customize the output. Here are some common options:

  • -n: Displays line numbers before each line.
  • -b: Displays line numbers before non-blank lines.
  • -E: Displays a dollar sign ($) at the end of each line.
  • -T: Displays tabs as ^I characters.

For example, to display the contents of a file named example.txt with line numbers, you can run the following command:

cat -n example.txt

This will display the contents of the example.txt file with line numbers.

Conclusion

In this article, we explored some of the common file operations that can be performed using Bash commands. Bash provides powerful file manipulation capabilities that can help users manage their files and directories efficiently. By mastering these basic file operations, you can become more productive and efficient in your daily work.

Thank you for reading.