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when you use the following command

find /Users/someUser/someFolder/* -type f -mtime +90

you'll get all the files that have a modification date that is bigger than 90 days. If you open however the file properties in the Finder on OS X for instance there is also a "Last opened" date. Is there a possibility to get all files with a last opened date bigger some treshold like the example above?? Sadly there's no "-otime" :)

Also on Automator you there's no filter for the last open time but just for modified time and created time...

Thanks a lot

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Thanks for the information, really interesting and useful. But the atime you mentioned initially actually works perfectly for me. Thx :) –  Juri Sep 18 '09 at 21:18
    
Ok! (Please consider removing the old comments below; you never know if they confuse someone in the future. Thanks!) –  Arjan Oct 11 '09 at 18:22

1 Answer 1

up vote 5 down vote accepted

The parameter atime defines the last access time. Seems you want that? But that is apparently not the same as the date you use in Finder.

See ls -lu for the date atime uses.

Mac OS X also uses the "HFS meta data" (or: "Finder info") to store dates. For example: Unix does not store file creation dates. The cdate in Unix is really the change date (including, for example, changes in access permissions, so cdate gets a new value in slightly different occasions than the modification date for mdate). Using this metadata, Mac OS X can still keep the details.

There are several options to show (some of) those dates, like:

stat file.txt
GetFileInfo file.txt
mdls file.txt

Using mdfind one can search for specific meta data. But it uses the Spotlight index, so I guess it might not find everything.

Like to find files that are excluded from Time Machine backups:

sudo mdfind "com_apple_backup_excludeItem = 'com.apple.backupd'"

To search based on the creation date, use kMDItemFSCreationDate. For the last opened date: kMDItemLastUsedDate. But note that files which have been created through certain Terminal commands, may not have that meta data set:

echo "Hello world" > ~/Desktop/hello-world.txt
touch ~/Desktop/will-not-be-found.txt
mdfind -onlyin ~/Desktop 'kMDItemFSCreationDate >= $time.this_week'

After opening "will-not-be-found.txt" in Text Edit, you'll see the file after all.

See also the Spotlight Query Syntax.

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That's it. Sorry, should have looked up the man page before. Thx a lot anyway :) –  Juri Sep 18 '09 at 14:38
    
ah ok...but it actually doesn't correspond to the "Last opened" time in finder. But could be useful though –  Juri Sep 18 '09 at 14:49

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