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Deal with dot files safely

Terminal - Deal with dot files safely
rm -rf .??*
2011-03-11 07:21:58
User: greggster
Functions: rm
0
Deal with dot files safely

rm -rf .* matches ".." and thus one goes up a level and wipes out more than intended.

In bash, .??* safely accomplishes what one intends - remove those .files

The ? matches most characters except "/", thus .?? does not match ../ and so one is safe.

Alternatives

There are 2 alternatives - vote for the best!

Terminal - Alternatives
rm -r .[!.]*
rm -rf .[!.]*

Know a better way?

If you can do better, submit your command here.

What others think

.??* does not match .a, .b, ...

.[!.]* does.

Comment by Natureshadow 225 weeks ago

.??* does not match .a, .b, ...

.[!.]* does.

Comment by Natureshadow 225 weeks ago

man bash discusses GLOBIGNORE which does this, but I can't wrap my head around the logic. GLOBIGNORE=.:.. seems to DTRT:

ls .* -d

. .. .keep

GLOBIGNORE=.:.. ls .* -d

.keep

Comment by hdhoang 225 weeks ago

@greggster: gnu rm complains, but it won't allow me to remove ..

What version of rm do you have where .* can equate to ../*

@NatureShadow: very nice

Comment by flatcap 225 weeks ago

The shell expands ".*" before its passed to the rm command. What shell are you using? echo $SHELL should display it.

Comment by greggster 224 weeks and 5 days ago

Your point of view

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