ls, lc, l, lf, lr, lx --
list contents of directory
ls [-AabCcdeFfgiLlmnopqRrstux1] [ -Ws |-Wv ] [file . . . ] -Ws |-Wv
l [-AabCcdeFfgiLnopqRrstux1] [ -Ws |-Wv ] [file . . . ] -Ws |-Wv
lc [-AabcdeFfgiLnopqRrstux1] [ -Ws |-Wv ] [file . . . ] -Ws |-Wv
lf [-AabcdefgiLnopqRrstux1] [ -Ws |-Wv ] [file . . . ] -Ws |-Wv
lr [-AabcdeFfgiLnopqrstux1] [ -Ws |-Wv ] [file . . . ] -Ws |-Wv
lx [-AabCcdeFfgiLnopqrstu1] [ -Ws |-Wv ] [file . . . ] -Ws |-Wv
For each directory argument, ls
lists the contents of the directory;
for each file argument,
ls repeats its name and any other information requested.
The output is sorted alphabetically by default.
When arguments are not given, the current directory is listed.
When several arguments are given,
the arguments are first sorted appropriately,
but file arguments appear
before directories and their contents.
ls processes supplementary code set characters
according to the locale specified in the LC_CTYPE
(see LANG on
except as noted under the -b, -q, and -S
The remaining commands are synonyms of ls with particular
options. They are provided for compatibility with previous implementations.
Specifying a redundant options of ls does with one of of these
commands (for example, -F with lf) does not cause an error.
l provides a long listing, one file per line, by
default. If a file is a symbolic link, l displays the
inode information of the file at the end of the chain, and appends
``@'' to the name of the symbolic link. This command is
equivalent to ls -l -Ws.
lc lists files in columns by default.
This command is equivalent to ls -C.
lf lists files, indicating directories, executables,
symbolic links and named pipes (or FIFOs). lf is
a variant of lc, so files are listed in columns by
default. This command is equivalent to ls -F.
lr lists files, recursively listing any subdirectories
encountered. lr is a variant of lc, so files are
listed in columns by default. This command is equivalent to ls -R.
lx, another variant of lc, lists files in
columns, but sorted across the page rather than down the page.
This command is equivalent to ls -x.
There are three major listing formats.
The default format for output directed to a terminal
is multi-column with entries
sorted down the columns.
The options -C and -x enable
multi-column formats; and the -m option
enables stream output format, in which files
are listed across the page, separated by
To determine output formats for the
-C, -x, and -m options,
ls uses an environment variable,
to determine the number of positions available on one
If this variable is not set, the
database is used to determine the number of columns, based on the
environment variable TERM.
If this information cannot be obtained, 80 columns are assumed.
command has the following options:
The mode printed under the -l option
consists of eleven possible characters.
The first character may be one of the following:
Print one entry per line of output.
This is the default format.
List all entries. Entries whose name begin with a dot (.) are listed.
This option does not list current directory ``.'' and
directory above ``..''.
When ls is invoked by the root account,
this is the default.
List all entries, including those that begin with a
period (.), which
are normally not listed.
Force printing of non-printable characters to be in the
octal \ddd notation.
All multibyte characters are considered printable.
Multi-column output with entries sorted down the columns.
Use time of last modification of the i-node
(file created, mode changed, and so on) for sorting
(-t) or printing (-l).
If an argument is a directory, list only its name
(not its contents); often used with -l
to get the status of a directory.
Specify how to handle a
file that has extent attribute information.
Extent attributes include reserved space, a fixed
extent size, and extent alignment.
It may not be possible to preserve the information
if the destination file system does not support extent
attributes, has a different block size than the source
file system, or lacks free extents appropriate to satisfy
the extent attribute requirements.
Valid values for extent_opt are:
Issue a warning message
if extent attribute information cannot be kept
Fail the copy
if extent attribute information cannot be kept.
Ignore extent attribute information entirely.
When used with -l,
-e displays extent attribute information
for files with reserved space or fixed extent sizes.
Put a slash (/)
after each filename if the file is a directory,
an asterisk ()
if the file is executable, a vertical bar (|)
if it is a FIFO, and an at sign (@)
if the file is a symbolic link.
Force each argument to be interpreted as a directory
and list the name found in each slot.
This option turns off
-l, -t, -s,
and -r, and turns on -a;
the order is the order in which entries
appear in the directory.
The same as -l,
except that the owner is not printed.
For each file,
print the i-node number in the first column of the report.
When listing status,
if an argument is a symbolic link,
list the status of the file or directory
referenced by the link
rather than that of the link itself.
List in long format, giving mode, number of links, owner, group,
size in bytes, and date and time of last modification
for each file.
The -1 option is assumed.
For files less than six months old, minutes and seconds are
included in the modification time and the year is excluded.
For a consistent format, use -T.
Unless one of the -c or -u options is specified,
the modification time refers only to changes made to the file's
data, or the creation of the file.
It does not record the time that
changes were made to the information stored in the inode.
The date is given in the locale specified by the LC_TIME
If the file is a special file, the size field contains
the major and minor device numbers rather than a size.
If the file is a symbolic link, the filename is printed
followed by ``->'' and the pathname of the referenced file.
Stream output format; files are listed across the page, separated by commas.
The same as -l, except that the owner's UID
and group's GID numbers are printed, rather than
the associated character strings.
The same as -l, except that the group is not printed.
Put a slash
after each filename if the file is a directory.
Force printing of non-printable characters in file names as
the character question mark (?).
All multibyte characters are considered printable.
Recursively list subdirectories encountered.
Reverse the order of sort to get the reverse of the locale's collation
sequence or oldest first as appropriate.
This option causes the sort order of listed files to use the
collating sequence specified by the LC_COLLATE environment variable.
By default, the collating sequence of the "C" locale is used.
Give size in blocks,
including indirect blocks, for each entry.
Since vxfs allocates extents,
a copied file or a file retrieved from an
archive may or may not need the same number of indirect address extents
as the original file; thus the blocks reported by this option may be
different. The size and contents of the file, however, are identical.
Similar to -l, except that the modification time is always
displayed in full, as in this example:
Aug 31 09:37:00 2001
Sort by time stamp (latest first) then by name.
The default is the last modification time.
(See -n and -c.)
Use time of last access instead of last
modification for sorting (with the
-t option) or printing (with the -l
Multi-column output with entries sorted across rather than
down the page.
Prints a long listing similar to that obtained using the
-l option. If the file is a symbolic link, this option
displays the inode details of the file at the end of the symbolic
link chain, and appends an ``@'' to the name of the symbolic
Prints a long listing similar to that obtained using the
-l option. If the file is the start of a chain of symbolic
links, this option displays the inode details of the file at the end
of the chain, and prints the pathnames of all files in the chain
separated by ``->'' symbols.
The next 9 characters are interpreted
as three sets of three bits each.
The first set refers to the owner's permissions;
the next to permissions of others in the user-group of the file;
and the last to all others.
Within each set, the three characters indicate
permission to read, write, and
execute the file as a program, respectively.
For a directory, ``execute'' permission is interpreted
to mean permission to search the directory
for a specified file.
if the entry is a directory;
if the entry is a symbolic link;
if the entry is a block special file;
if the entry is a character special file;
the entry is XENIX shared data (memory) file;
if the entry is a fifo (named pipe) special file;
the entry is a XENIX semaphore;
if the entry is a regular file.
The last character indicates whether an Access Control List (ACL)
exists for the file.
If an ACL exists, the last character is a plus
sign (+); if an ACL does not exist, there is no character printed.
ACLs are supported only if the file system is of
type sfs or vxfs.
ls -l (the long list) prints its output as follows:
-rwxrwxrwx 1 smith dev 10876 May 16 9:42 part2
Reading from right to left, you see that the current directory holds
one file, named part2.
Next, the last time that file's contents were modified was 9:42 A.M. on
The file contains 10,876 bytes.
The owner of the file, or the user, belongs to the group
dev (perhaps indicating ``development''), and their
login name is smith.
The number, in this case 1,
indicates the number of links to file part2
Finally, the dash and letters tell you that
user, group, and others
have permissions to read, write, and execute
Note also that an ACL does not exist for part2.
The execute (x)
symbol here occupies the third position of the three-character sequence.
A - in the third position would have indicated a denial of
The permissions are indicated as follows:
For user and group permissions,
the third position is sometimes occupied by a character other
than x or -.
s also may occupy this position,
referring to the state of the set-ID bit, whether it be the
user's or the group's.
to assume the same ID as the user during
execution is, for example, used during login when you begin as root
but need to assume the identity of the user you login as.
the file is readable
the file is writable
the file is executable
the indicated permission is not granted
mandatory locking occurs during access
(the set-group-ID bit
is on and the group execution bit is off); if the POSIX2 environment
variable is set, s is printed instead of l
the set-user-ID or set-group-ID bit is on,
and the corresponding user or group execution bit is also on
undefined bit-state (the set-user-ID bit is on
and the user execution bit is off)
the 1000 (octal) bit, or sticky bit, is on
and execution is on
the 1000 bit is turned on, and execution is off (undefined bit-state)
In the case of the sequence of group permissions, l may occupy
the third position.
l refers to mandatory file and record locking.
This permission describes a file's ability to
allow other files to lock its reading or writing permissions during access.
For other permissions,
the third position may be occupied by t or T.
These refer to the state of the sticky bit and execution permissions.
The -e option (used with -l)
displays extent attribute information as follows:
-rwxrwxrwx 1 smith dev 10876 May 16 9:42 part2 :res 36 ext 3 align noextend
This output line indicates a file with 36 blocks of reservation, a fixed
extent size of 3 blocks, all extents aligned to 3 block boundaries, and
the file unable to be grown once the current reservation is exhausted.
The format of the date given in the long listing is dependent on the
environment variable LC_TIME (the examples are in the C locale).
(See LANG on
user IDs for ls -l and ls -o
group IDs for ls -l and ls -g
terminal information database
language-specific message file
(see LANG on
Some examples of file permissions:
Readable, writable, and executable
by the user and readable by the group and others.
Readable, writable, and executable by the user,
readable and executable by the group and others,
and allows its user-ID to be assumed, during execution,
by the user presently executing it.
Readable and writable
only by the user and the group and can be locked during access.
An example of a file that has an ACL.
This describes a file that is readable, writable, and executable
by the user,
at most readable and executable by the file group class entries,
and readable only by all others.
The individual ACL entries may further restrict access for
individual users and/or groups.
If an ACL exists for a file, the permissions (also referred to as
the base permission mode) represent the maximum permissions to
the file, that is, ACL entries may further restrict access to the
The complete ACL, representing the actual permissions to the
file, can be displayed using the getacl command.
The ls -a
command prints the names of all files in the current directory,
including those that begin with a dot (.), which normally
do not print.
The ls -aisn command provides information
on all files, including those that begin with a dot (-a),
the i-number -- the memory
address of the i-node associated with the file -- printed in the left-hand
the size (in blocks) of the files, printed in the column
to the right of the i-numbers (-s);
finally, the report is displayed in the numeric version of the
long list, printing the UID (instead of user name)
and GID (instead of group name) numbers associated with the files.
When the sizes of the files in a directory
are listed, a total count of blocks,
including indirect blocks, is printed.
Unprintable characters in file names may confuse the
columnar output options.
The total block count will be incorrect if
there are hard links among the files.
The -R option has been multithreaded and is implemented via
nftw (walk a file tree).
This command has been updated to handle files greater than 2GB.
© 2005 The SCO Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
SCO OpenServer Release 6.0.0 -- 03 June 2005