How to Find Files in Linux Terminal

To find/search files in linux terminal; In this tutorial, i am going to show you how to find/search files by name, size, and type in Linux Ubuntu using terminal.

How to Find Files in Linux Terminal

Let’s use the following ways to find the files by name, size, and type in Linux Ubuntu using the terminal:

  • Finding by Name using Terminal
  • Finding by Type using Terminal
  • Filtering by Time and Size using Terminal

Finding by Name using Terminal

Run the following command to find a file by name; is as follows:

find -name "query"

Run the following command to find a file by name but ignore the case of the query; is as follow:

find -iname "query"

Run the following command to find all files that don’t adhere to a specific pattern; is as follow:

find -not -name "query_to_avoid"

Finding by Type using Terminal

Run the following command to find with the -type parameter; is as follow:

find -type type_descriptor query

There are other options in the type to find the file. Which are given below:

  • f: regular file
  • d: directory
  • l: symbolic link
  • c: character devices
  • b: block devices

Filtering by Time and Size using Terminal

You can also find files by their size and time in the Linux ubuntu system. The following commands has been given for this:

And also know as some commonly used size suffixes:

  • c: bytes
  • k: kilobytes
  • M: megabytes
  • G: gigabytes
  • b: 512-byte blocks

For example, the following command will find each file in the /usr directory that is exactly 60 bytes:

find /usr -size 60c

To find files that are less than 100 bytes, Use the following command:

find /usr -size -100c

To find files over 800 megabytes in the /usr directory, Use the following command:

find /usr -size +800M

Find File By Time using Terminal

Now, i will talk about how to find time recording files in the Linux Ubuntu system.

  • Access Time: The last time a file was read or written to.
  • Modification Time: The last time the contents of the file were modified.
  • Change Time: The last time the file’s inode metadata was changed.

For example, to find files in the /usr directory that were modified in the previous day, use the following command:

find /usr -mtime 1

If you want files that were accessed less than a day ago, you could run this command:

find /usr -atime -1

To find files that last had their meta information changed more than 3 days ago, you might execute the following:

find /usr -ctime +3

These options also have companion parameters you can use to specify minutes instead of days:

find /usr -mmin -1

This will give the files that have been modified in the last minute.

find can also do comparisons against a reference file and return those that are newer:

find / -newer reference_file

Conclusion

In this tutorial, i have shown to you how to find files by name, size, and type in Linux Ubuntu using the terminal.

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