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Old 01-28-2006, 12:46 PM   #1
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Lightbulb Getting a DOS-style sorted directory listing

A question I've seen asked from time to time is "how do I get a DOS-style directory listing?" - that is, with the directories listed first, followed by the filenames in alphabetical order.

I am waiting for some downloads to finish so I figured I'd work out a solution and post it here.

It's actually easy: using GNU sort (from coreutils)

First you need to run ls then pipe it through sort, like so:

 ls -l | sort -k 1.1,1.2 -k 8.1 -f | less
What happens here is this:

`ls -l` provides the "long" directory listing

`sort` is the utility which will sort the lines output by ls

`-k 1.1,1.2` sorts by the first field, first and second column. Since directory files have 'd' as the first character for this field, directories will be listed first

`-k 8.1` applies a second sort by the eighth field (filename), starting from the first column

`-f` tells sort to ignore case, just as the DOS `dir` command does.

Now, by default, `dir` is aliased to `ls -l` in many (all?) distributions. If you wish to change this edit /etc/bash.bashrc and search for "alias dir". Once you find it then change 'ls -l' to the command specified above. Now you have a DOS-style directory sort which lists directories first, followed by a case-insensitive alphabetical listing of files.

In a similar fashion, you can get a DOS-style directory listings where the directories are grouped but sorted by date/time, and files are grouped but sorted by date-time (You can extend it further by also adding the filename sort back, for two files with the same timestamp).

To sort by date/time you just modify the above command slightly:

ls -l | sort -k 1.1,1.2 -k 6.1 -k 7.1 -f | less
And to add an additional sort by filename (after sorting FIRST by directory/file byte, THEN by date, THEN by time) run the following command:

ls -l | sort -k 1.1,1.2 -k 6.1 -k 7.1 -k 8.1 -f | less

Last edited by KimVette; 01-28-2006 at 01:06 PM.
Old 01-29-2006, 10:42 AM   #2
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ls -R was too easy?
Old 01-29-2006, 12:22 PM   #3
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You did not even read the command (or even the post in general), did you?

This is not a recursive directory listing.

Last edited by KimVette; 01-29-2006 at 12:31 PM.


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