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Old 09-16-2020, 06:59 AM   #1
Registered: Nov 2004
Distribution: Slackware/Solaris
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Finding the pattern to ls

Im trying to find a pattern that allows me to list current log file and its latest rotated one.
So, what I want as an input is eg.
...and skip all remaining 2,3,4,5 and so on.
I was hoping that following would work but it doesnt
ls -al /var/log/syslog*[,1]
-rw-r----- 1 syslog adm 268915 Sep 16 08:06 /var/log/syslog.1
Any quick ideas here?
Old 09-16-2020, 07:04 AM   #2
Registered: Feb 2007
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I think you're asking for brace expansion - i.e. "ls filename{,.1}" will expand to "ls filename filename.1"

If you don't know that the last rotation is .1 you could also achieve this with a wildcard, sorted by date and using head/tail with -n2 to truncate.

2 members found this post helpful.
Old 09-16-2020, 08:44 AM   #3
Registered: Nov 2004
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Yes, that does the trick

ls -al /var/log/syslog{,.1}
-rw-r----- 1 syslog adm 171272 Sep 16 15:38 /var/log/syslog
-rw-r----- 1 syslog adm 268915 Sep 16 08:06 /var/log/syslog.1
Old 09-16-2020, 10:46 AM   #4
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The standard wildcard glob is not good enough for this.
But bash has extglob, an extended glob:
shopt -s extglob
ls -l /var/log/syslog?(.1)
Opposed to the brace expansion, the glob matches against existing files; not present files are omitted.
See the following exercise:
ls -l /var/log/syslog{,{1..9}}
ls -l /var/log/syslog?(.[1-9])
If no file matches then the glob keeps the given glob pattern, unless nullglob is set in addition.
The nullglob works well with a for loop, not with ls (that defaults to all files).

Last edited by MadeInGermany; 09-16-2020 at 10:51 AM.


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