Thursday, February 17, 2011

Bash delete directories except that one

Ran into a scenario where I needed to delete all subdirectories of target except target/keepme/. So I want rm -rf target/subdir1 target/subdir2 ... target/subdirN with one directory omitted. I want to use grep to remove the directory I want to keep from the list so something like this should work:


  1. Print the list of directories echo target/*/
  2. Flip space separator to newline  tr " " "\n"
  3. Remove the line for the directory to keep grep -v keepme
  4. Flip newline back to space  tr "\n" " "
  5. Run rm -rf on the results from steps 1-4

As a 1-liner:

rm -rf $(echo target/*/ | tr " " "\n" | grep -v keepme | tr "\n" " ")

Noting it in case I need to do it again someday ;)

5 comments:

Kamran Zafar said...

How about this one:

find target/* ! -iname keepme -print0 | xargs -0 rm -rf

this works for me

Naviya Nair said...

I have read your blog its very attractive and impressive. I like it your blog.

Java Online Training Java EE Online Training Java EE Online Training Java 8 online training Core Java 8 online training

Java Online Training from India Java Online Training from India Core Java Training Online Core Java Training Online Java Training InstitutesJava Training Institutes

john jersy said...

A universal message I suppose, not giving up is the formula for success I think. Some things take longer than others to accomplish, so people must understand that they should have their eyes on the goal, and that should keep them motivated to see it out til the end.
python Training institute in Pune
python Training institute in Chennai
python Training institute in Bangalore

sheela said...

Awesome article. It is so detailed and well formatted that i enjoyed reading it as well as get some new information too.
Best Devops online Training
Online DevOps Certification Course - Gangboard

priya said...

It's interesting that many of the bloggers to helped clarify a few things for me as well as giving.Most of ideas can be nice content.The people to give them a good shake to get your point and across the command
Data Science training in Chennai
Data science training in Bangalore
Data science training in pune
Data science online training
Data Science Interview questions and answers
Data Science Tutorial
Data science training in bangalore

Post a Comment