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How to Find files in Linux?

Hello friends. Many users, newcomers to Linux, are curious to use the terminal and it is always good to give them support. But not only them, but other users even being veterans, need to know how to use commands to streamline their tasks. Well, in this post we will teach you How to find files in Linux using the terminal.

The find command is a command that searches for files and folders, from the command line, in a directory tree. It is used by many users who work in the terminal and can help even the most veteran users of the system.

So, let’s show you some examples of how to use the command to find files in any Linux distribution.

How to find files in Linux

The find command is part of the GNU Utils so it is available in any Linux distribution you can think of. So like any command, it has a basic syntax which is as follows

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find [path] [parameters] [values] [values]

From what we can see, it is simple to use and now we will show some examples

  • Find a file of which we know the name and extension:
find / -name name.txt 

Replace name with the name of the file. In this case, a file named name.txt will be searched for in the whole system.

  • Search for files in a particular location.
find /home/angelo/ -name name.txt
  • Doing case-insensitive searches

When searching by filename it is common to not remember whether it is upper or lower case. To do this, you can follow the following structure

find /home/angelo -iname name name.txt

Remember that you can modify the names and parameters to fit your criteria.

  • Search for directories or folders

To search for directories we must use the type d parameter, it is as simple as this.

find / -type d -name documents

This will search for all folders named documents in the whole system. Also, you can change the search directory.

  • Search files by extension

In this case, it is also useful to know how to search for files by extension. In this case, the option that will help us is type f.

find / -type f -name *.sh

Thus, in the above example, all files with the extension .sh in the system will be searched.

Other examples of the find command

It is also useful to know how to search for files by permissions, to do this use the perm parameter and the permission you want to search for.

find / -type f -perm 0775

or even, permissions different from the specified one

find / -type f ! -perm 775
  • Search for empty files or folders

In this case, we can easily do it with these two commands

find / -type f -empty
find / -type d -empty

The first one works for files and the second one for directories or folders.

  • Find files according to their modification date

For many sysadmins this can be very useful because we can perform a search according to the time it was modified.

find / -type f -mtime +21

In this case, all files that are older than 21 days since their last modification will be searched.

  • Search files according to their size

Also, with the size option we can further filter our search. For example, we can search for files that weigh more than 10Mb.

find / -type f -size +10M

That is to say, with this we can be more effective.

So, enjoy it.

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