Suppose I have a directory with a bunch of files:


Is there a way you can recursively traverse the directories looking for files using --include and --exclude?

It would be great to find something as simply as:

find . --include "*.png" --exclude "file1.png"
  • 3
    For this simple case find . -name "*.png" '!' -name "file1.png" -- note the quoting of ! is not always needed but simpler to play it safe. For more complicated cases you can do full Boolean logic using -a -o ( ) (where bottom-level -a can be implicit as here) as described on the man page; again ( ) usually need quoting. Feb 14 '17 at 22:37
  • @dave_thompson_085 I suggest to make your comment an answer
    – janos
    Feb 15 '17 at 21:17

To exclude a file, either use a more restrictive regex than *.png or grep the output to exclude a result:

find . -name "*.png" | grep -v "file1.png"

You can exclude a whole directory tree by using the -prune option, but it doesn't exclude on a file level.

  • I've never seen a find that takes --include or in fact any double-hyphen; ITYM -name or maybe -path but those take a pattern not a regex; your example "*.png" is a (properly quoted) pattern and not a regex. Some finds do take -regex with an actual regex. Feb 14 '17 at 22:38
  • You're right, I was just quoting some of the original post without checking too much. I'll edit to correct it.
    – woolfie
    Feb 15 '17 at 15:39

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