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Old 12-04-2019, 06:31 PM   #1
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Registered: Jan 2002
Location: Nanjing, China
Distribution: Ubuntu 18.04
Posts: 1,760

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How make rsync deal with spaces in a directory name?

Thanks to help from linuxquestions, I can back up this laptop to another laptop using rsync. Works great and extremely quickly!

You probably know that old TV series 24. America is just full of bad guys, and they all want to get Jack Bauer! It's rubbish I know, but it relaxes me in the evening.

Yesterday, I wanted to copy a directory 24 Season6 from a usb to my old laptop. Thought I would use rsync, as I am very impressed with that program!

But I kept getting errors. I think it is because of the space in the directory name.

The usb is at /media/pedro/X3

I tried:

rsync /media/pedro/X3/24 Season6 /home/pedro/24
but I kept getting a 'can't stat' error 'no such file or directory'

Is it the space causing the error?
Old 12-04-2019, 06:42 PM   #2
Registered: Oct 2003
Location: Elgin,IL,USA
Distribution: GalliumOS on Chrombook
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you need to mark the space so bash knows it is there. In Linux, most Unix, that is done with the backslash \
So "24 Season6" on the command line is "24\ Season6"
rsync /media/pedro/X3/24\ Season6 /home/pedro/24

Last edited by uteck; 12-04-2019 at 06:43 PM.
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Old 12-04-2019, 07:09 PM   #3
Registered: Feb 2007
Location: UK
Distribution: Debian
Posts: 47

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In addition to backslashes, you can also wrap the whole name in quotes. (Useful if a path would have lots of spaces.)

Also, for local paths you can use tab-completion - try typing...
...and (depending on which other files/dirs exist), you may get the whole path with half as many key presses.
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 12-05-2019, 01:00 AM   #4
Registered: Nov 2017
Distribution: Slackware Linux
Posts: 376

Rep: Reputation: Disabled
Originally Posted by boughtonp View Post
In addition to backslashes, you can also wrap the whole name in quotes.
Yes. And they better be single quotes. Because $foo inside double quotes will get interpreted as variable with name foo by shell.


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