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Old 04-01-2004, 06:21 AM   #1
Registered: Oct 2003
Location: Switzerland (Europe)
Distribution: OpenSuSE, RedHat, Knoppix, IRIX + MacOSX
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How to calculate file age ? "File xy is 2 days 3 hours old"


I'm trying to make a list of the age or the elapsed time since the last modification of my files.

It should look this way:
File xy 2 days 3 hours 11 minutes
File yz 1 month 5 days 7 hours 23 minutes

I tried to do this with "ls -l" and awk for the values, but it's the wrong way.
I did not found anything like filedate - sysdate.

I prefer bash, put perl will be fine too :-)

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Old 04-01-2004, 10:46 PM   #2
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Registered: Aug 2003
Location: Portland, Oregon
Distribution: Gentoo
Posts: 1,372

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la -la

it will output like this:

drwxr-xr-x 2 exodist users 4096 Mar 31 00:45 azureus/

make a script that takes the date from the output and subtracts it from the current date, then have it output what you need. I cannot write this script inless than 1/2 hour, if u need help with scripting u can ask in the programming forum
Old 04-02-2004, 07:51 AM   #3
Registered: Oct 2003
Location: Switzerland (Europe)
Distribution: OpenSuSE, RedHat, Knoppix, IRIX + MacOSX
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I found the solution.

I get the UNIX-Systemdate in seconds with NOW=`date +%s`
Then I get the UNIX-Timestamp of the file with OLD=`stat -c %Z filename`

And finally I get the age by expr $NOW - $OLD

(Using ls-la will give you sometimes -32 minutes or too much to code ;-)
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 06-23-2011, 12:57 PM   #4
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Registered: Jun 2011
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thx you fluppi!

this topic helped me! THX!
Old 03-14-2012, 05:45 AM   #5
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Registered: Mar 2012
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This top helped me !

for oneliners, display age of the file in minutes:
OLD=`stat -c %Z file_name`; NOW=`date +%s`; (( DIFF = (NOW - OLD)/60 )) ; echo "This file is $DIFF m old"
2 members found this post helpful.
Old 06-03-2013, 10:27 AM   #6
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Registered: Jun 2013
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Lightbulb Full Answer

This code will get the age in seconds and format the answer in days, hours, minutes and secondes (For demonstration I used the age of /etc/hosts) :


# Gets a quantity of seconds and formats the output into Days, Hours, Minutes and seconds
# @parm Seconds
# @return string containing days, hours Minutes and seconds example: 0D 0H 0M 1S
# dependencies:none
function SecondsToDaysHoursMinutesSeconds()
local seconds=$1
local days=$(($seconds/86400))
seconds=$(($seconds-($days*86400) ))
local hours=$(($seconds/3600))
seconds=$((seconds-($hours*3600) ))
local minutes=$(($seconds/60))
seconds=$(( $seconds-($minutes*60) ))
echo -n "${days}D ${hours}H ${minutes}M ${seconds}S"

# Gets the age of a file in seconds
# @parm a file name (example: /etc/hosts
# @return Age in seconds
# dependencies:none
function FileAge()
echo $((`date +%s` - `stat -c %Z $1`))

echo $(SecondsToDaysHoursMinutesSeconds $(FileAge /etc/hosts) )

The output will look something like this:

36D 8H 46M 9S

Hope this helps.

Last edited by CJTC; 06-03-2013 at 10:31 AM. Reason: Clerification and spelling correction


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