What's this?

commandlinefu.com is the place to record those command-line gems that you return to again and again.

Delete that bloated snippets file you've been using and share your personal repository with the world. That way others can gain from your CLI wisdom and you from theirs too. All commands can be commented on, discussed and voted up or down.

Get involved!

You can sign-in using OpenID credentials, or register a traditional username and password.

First-time OpenID users will be automatically assigned a username which can be changed after signing in.

Universal configuration monitoring and system of record for IT.

Stay in the loop…

Follow the Tweets.

Every new command is wrapped in a tweet and posted to Twitter. Following the stream is a great way of staying abreast of the latest commands. For the more discerning, there are Twitter accounts for commands that get a minimum of 3 and 10 votes - that way only the great commands get tweeted.

» http://twitter.com/commandlinefu
» http://twitter.com/commandlinefu3
» http://twitter.com/commandlinefu10

Subscribe to the feeds.

Use your favourite RSS aggregator to stay in touch with the latest commands. There are feeds mirroring the 3 Twitter streams as well as for virtually every other subset (users, tags, functions,…):

Subscribe to the feed for:



May 19, 2015 - A Look At The New Commandlinefu
I've put together a short writeup on what kind of newness you can expect from the next iteration of clfu. Check it out here.
March 2, 2015 - New Management
I'm Jon, I'll be maintaining and improving clfu. Thanks to David for building such a great resource!

Top Tags



Psst. Open beta.

Wow, didn't really expect you to read this far down. The latest iteration of the site is in open beta. It's a gentle open beta-- not in prime-time just yet. It's being hosted over at UpGuard (link) and you are more than welcome to give it a shot. Couple things:

  • » The open beta is running a copy of the database that will not carry over to the final version. Don't post anything you don't mind losing.
  • » If you wish to use your user account, you will probably need to reset your password.
Your feedback is appreciated via the form on the beta page. Thanks! -Jon & CLFU Team

Delete all files found in directory A from directory B

Terminal - Delete all files found in directory A from directory B
for file in <directory A>/*; do rm <directory B>/`basename $file`; done
2009-05-04 12:44:50
User: jamiebullock
Functions: file rm
Delete all files found in directory A from directory B

This command is useful if you accidentally untar or unzip an archive in a directory and you want to automatically remove the files. Just untar the files again in a subdirectory and then run the above command e.g.

for file in ~/Desktop/temp/*; do rm ~/Desktop/`basename $file`; done


There are 2 alternatives - vote for the best!

Terminal - Alternatives

Know a better way?

If you can do better, submit your command here.

What others think

cd ~/Desktop/temp find * -type f -exec rm ~/Desktop/temp/{} \;
Comment by SlimG 390 weeks and 2 days ago

@SlimG I think you meant the cd to be 'cd ~/Desktop' so in one line it would be:

find directoryA -type f -exec rm directoryB/{} \;

@jamiebullock many times you can replace a bash for loop that does a single action on some set of files with a single find command. Find lets you be very specific about the files you are searching for way beyond common shell "globbing" such as ls *.png, and then specify actions to be taken on each matching file, such as deletion, or running an arbitrary command with each match as the argument. See 'man find' for more.

Comment by bwoodacre 390 weeks and 2 days ago
tar tzf archive.tar.gz | xargs rm
Comment by log0 390 weeks and 2 days ago

@SlimG @bwoodacre Yes i'm also a big fan of find, but I periodically forget to use it! I agree it's cleaner than the for loop.

@log0 That's *very* nice

Comment by jamiebullock 390 weeks ago

@log0 bet me to it but

ls dirA | xargs -I file rm dirB/file

Comment by Newky 228 weeks and 1 day ago

Your point of view

You must be signed in to comment.