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Re: Support for st_birthtime

From: James Youngman
Subject: Re: Support for st_birthtime
Date: Wed, 28 Mar 2007 11:31:43 +0100

I have now checked into the findutils repository CVS code changes
supporting file birth time.  The increased functionality should be
available on systems supporting st_birthtime, including BSD and
Cygwin.   Attempting to use the new features generates either an error
message when the OS doesn't support the feature, or a predicate which
does not pass when the OS supports birth time but the filesystem does

As yet the feature is not fully documented, but look out for -newerXY
for X=b or Y=b, plus the %Bx format specifier for -printf.    The %b
format was already used, so there is no ctime-formatted equivalent.
The remaining BSD find options relating to birth time (e.g. -Bnewer)
will be implemented at some point.

I developed the BSD support on a NetBSD-3.1 system.  NetBSD-3.1's
support for birth time is slightly broken, which find tries to work
around in a sane way (specifically, sometimes but not always you get
garbage results in st_birthtime if the underlying filesystem does not
support birthtime).  Please mail the list if you get a wrong or
unexpected result.

There are tests in "findutils/tests" for birth time support.  This
only tests the gnulib functionality, not the findutils birth time
code.  Documentation and test suite enhancements are planned but not

I'd be grateful if you could test the current CVS code.


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