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Old 02-10-2010, 07:22 AM   #1
Registered: May 2006
Location: Farnham, Surrey, UK (Chile until Dec 2011)
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Locate command to include the external hard drive

Hi Everyone

I normally use the "locate" command to find files that I have on my local drive. However, if I wanted to do this for an external drive, how would I go about this?

From what little I know about Linux, I'm guessing that it creates a reference file from which it performs the search when the command is typed. If I'm right this is updated at a given interval or when "updatedb" is used?

As the external hard drive is not always mounted is it best to create another of these reference files and have a different command (e.g. locateext) or something? Or is it best to add the external hard drive's location to the list of files that get added with updatedb.

I'm running Fedora 11.

Sorry if I'm getting the wrong end of the stick somewhere or I'm not very clear! If you are unsure of anything then ask me!

Old 02-10-2010, 07:34 AM   #2
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Look in /etc/sysconfig/locate. Remove the directory from prunepaths. You may need to change an entry like /mnt/ to prune the directories of /mnt/ to exclude.

Suppose you have /mnt/dirA, /mnt/dirB, and /mnt/dirC. Change the entry for prunepaths to /mnt/dirB /mnt/dirC. Then /mnt/dirA will be included.

If you don't have an /etc/sysconfig/locate file, then then read your daily cron script that runs updatedb nightly. It probably reads a config file at the top of the script.
Old 02-10-2010, 07:49 AM   #3
Registered: May 2006
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Thanks jschiwal.

There is no locate file at that location, however looking in the cron.daily/mlocate.cron file it reads:

nodevs=$(< /proc/filesystems awk '$1 == "nodev" { print $2 }')
renice +19 -p $$ >/dev/null 2>&1
ionice -c2 -n7 -p $$ >/dev/null 2>&1
/usr/bin/updatedb -f "$nodevs"

Is the /proc/filesystems file significant? It reads:

nodev sysfs
nodev rootfs
nodev bdev
nodev proc
nodev cgroup
nodev cpuset
nodev binfmt_misc
nodev debugfs
nodev securityfs
nodev sockfs
nodev usbfs
nodev pipefs
nodev anon_inodefs
nodev tmpfs
nodev inotifyfs
nodev devpts
nodev ramfs
nodev hugetlbfs
nodev mqueue
nodev selinuxfs
nodev rpc_pipefs
nodev fuse
nodev fusectl

Hope this helps.

Old 02-10-2010, 01:19 PM   #4
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find mite help. locate is faster because it looks at a file that lists all the files on your hd rather than looking thru it all the time.
find <directory-you-want-searched> -name "*<string-from-filename>*"
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Old 02-10-2010, 05:47 PM   #5
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What I suggest is running locate with two different database files. You can specify the name and location of the database file when you run updatedb and specify the appropriate file when you use locate. Specify what partitions or directorys you want excluded on the command line. You can create an alias or a script for these.


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