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Old 01-09-2003, 10:19 AM   #1
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Registered: Jan 2003
Location: Alexandria, VA
Distribution: Slackware
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Question delete files / keep subdirectories?

Is there an easy way to delete all the files in a large directory tree while keeping that directory structure? I'd like to delete all the files in 16 subdirectories named 00 - 0F which each have 256 subdirectories below them named 00 - FF where I'd also like to delete all files. I would like to keep all 4112 empty directories. All the files are named 00000000 - FFFFFFFF (not that many files, normally about 00000000 - 00000000FF). Could someone give me an easy command to accomplish this or direct me to an appropriate scripting How-To? Thanks.
Old 01-09-2003, 12:40 PM   #2
Registered: Jun 2001
Location: Centralia, WA
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Look at the manpage for find and then try this:

Assume the parent directory of the 00 - 0F subdirectories is called /large_directory

find /large_directory -type f -exec ls {} \;

Try this to make sure that the 'find' command is retrieving all the files you want, and NOT listing the subdirectory names.

Then try the same command with a small change, do :

find /large_directory -type f | xargs rm

This will delete all the files listed in the first find command.

You can verify that all the files were deleted by re-running the first find command.

You can verify that the directories under /large_directory still exist by typing this:

find /large_directory -type d -exec ls {} \;

This should return by showing all of your subdirectories.

Hope it helps. :-)
Old 01-10-2003, 03:01 PM   #3
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Thanks! Thats exactly what I needed.


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