August 1, 2023

Move (copy) files or folders printed by find

$ find /home/username/Download/ -mtime -3 -print -exec cp {} /media/username/usb-stick/ \;

will copy files created or modified within the last three days in the Download to the USB stick mounted.

The beginning of this command is the usual find command, with the option -mtime in this example.

We add the option -print so the shell shows what’s being copied.

Then comes -exec which runs the command cp on the selected files. The curly brackets i.e. {} come along with usage of -exec and are replaced by the current file name being processed.

; tells -exec that it is the end of the command.

Backslash i.e. \ is just here to escaped ;.

Note: -exec executes the command on each find (not as a batch).

To learn more about the option -exec, run $ man find.

To learn more about the option -mtime, check out:

The utility find was published in 1971 and is copyleft-licensed.

Other wiki:

personal computing command-line interface (cli) gnu linux trisquel shell literacy office applications wiki find

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