Move large numbers of files

for f in *; do mv $f <target_path>; done;
In my job I often have to deal with moving 100,000 files or more. A mv won't do it because there are too many. This will move everything in the current directory to the target path.

-5
2009-07-09 12:07:49
mv

These Might Interest You

What Others Think

That will be _very_ slow. I suggest you: find -maxdepth 1 | xargs mv --target=destdir
pixelbeat · 467 weeks and 2 days ago
find -maxdepth 1 matches '.' ... so you'll get mv: cannot move `.' to `/home/rpolli/.local/.': Device or resource busy
ioggstream · 467 weeks and 2 days ago
find -maxdepth 1 -mindepth 1 | xargs mv --target=destdir
pixelbeat · 467 weeks and 1 day ago
Or use: find /dir/with/largefiles -type f -name "*.gz" -exec mv {} /targetdir \;
cow · 467 weeks and 1 day ago
wtf. Why not mv * <target_path> It does exactly what it is supposed to do.
log0 · 466 weeks and 3 days ago
Ok sorry for my last message. I didn't read the description carefully ("A mv won't do it because there are too many.") However mv only works perfectly well with 200 000 files under debian and cygwin. Which system are you using ? Is the problem related to the size of the file ? It sounds strange to my that gnu mv would actually need a patch.
log0 · 466 weeks and 3 days ago
After a bit of investigation: gnu mv can handle the max size of a signed int. However the number of arguments that can be given to a command is limited by ARG_MAX: http://www.in-ulm.de/~mascheck/various/argmax/ There's no such limitation since linux 2.6.23
log0 · 466 weeks and 3 days ago

What do you think?

Any thoughts on this command? Does it work on your machine? Can you do the same thing with only 14 characters?

You must be signed in to comment.

What's this?

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

Share Your Commands



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: