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1.1 Scope

For brevity, the word file in this manual means a regular file, a directory, a symbolic link, or any other kind of node that has a directory entry. A directory entry is also called a file name. A file name may contain some, all, or none of the directories in a path that leads to the file. These are all examples of what this manual calls “file names”:


A directory tree is a directory and the files it contains, all of its subdirectories and the files they contain, etc. It can also be a single non-directory file.

These programs enable you to find the files in one or more directory trees that:

Once you have found the files you’re looking for (or files that are potentially the ones you’re looking for), you can do more to them than simply list their names. You can get any combination of the files’ attributes, or process the files in many ways, either individually or in groups of various sizes. Actions that you might want to perform on the files you have found include, but are not limited to:

This manual describes how to perform each of those tasks, and more.

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