ls command

(List directory contents)

The ls command will list the files and directories within the current working directory (the directory you are currently in).

There are a few options you can use with ls, and the format, or syntax of the command is....

ls [options] [file]


>ls -l /home/rich/www

Lets break that down....

ls is the command
-l is the option which will give you a long listing format (which shows more info than just the file names - the owner, size, date last modified etc)
/home/rich/www is the directory we want to see a listing of (if you omit this part, ls will print the contents of the directory you are in).


Some useful options are -l, -a, -s, -h and -R

-l will give you a long listing (as explained above)
-a will show you ALL the files in the directory, including hidden files
-R will the subdirectories recursively, which means it will show all the directories and files within the specified directory.
-s will also show you the size of the files (in blocks, not bytes)
-h will show the size in "human readable format" (ie: 4K, 16M, 1G etc). Of course you must use this option in conjunction with the -s option.

You can combine as many of these options as you wish.


>ls -la /home

Lists ALL the files and directories in the /home directory, in the long listing format.

>ls -ash

Lists ALL the files in the current directory (no directory was specified so it lists the contents of the current directory), and the size of the files/directories, written in 'human readable' format.

There are many more options for ls, but these are a few you may want to use. To see the total list of options for the ls command, you can type man ls at the prompt.

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