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Re: Move Command Feature

From: Michael Boldischar
Subject: Re: Move Command Feature
Date: Fri, 5 Apr 2013 14:07:34 -0500

Padraig and Assaf,

A copy and remove is how I do it right now (using the verbose option to see exit codes).  I try to keep it simple because the data I move is so important.  Also, I get a little nervous writing scripts using the recursive remove command.

Rsync is definitely an option.  It's a really big hammer for moving a directory on a local computer.  I'll have to work on increasing my comfort level with it.

For what it's worth, I still think a safe move flag in "mv" adds value.  Everyone's had that experience where they're learning Linux and something bad happens during a move operation.  The safe move option makes it easier to recover from an error when the "mv" command is chosen as the tool for the job.  All users want the ability to undo a mistake.  My two cents.


On Fri, Apr 5, 2013 at 1:55 PM, Pádraig Brady <address@hidden> wrote:
On 04/05/2013 06:23 PM, Michael Boldischar wrote:
> Hello,
> This is a suggestion for a new feature in the "mv" command.  This feature applies to moving directories.  If a user moves a directory with a lot of files and encounters an error, it can often leave the source directory in a partially moved state.  It makes it hard to redo the operation because the source directory has changed.
> The feature I'm looking for is a flag in the "mv" command that preserves a copy of the source directory until the entire tree has been successfully copied to the destination directory.  At that point, the move command can delete the source directory.  That way, a user can fix the error and rerun the same move command.  It makes it easier and less of a headache.
> There might be other ways to accomplish this.  But, I would use this feature all the time if it were available.  I call it the "safe move operation."

safe move, sounds like copy and remove.
mv does this on a file by file basis.
To do this for a whole tree you could just:

cp -a old/ new/ &&
rm -Rf old/

cp -u might be useful in this situation also,
but rsync is more general than cp -u/



Michael Boldischar
Research Fellow / IT Manager
University of Minnesota
Department of Civil Engineering

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