MirBSD manpage: locate(1)

LOCATE(1)                    BSD Reference Manual                    LOCATE(1)


     locate - find filenames quickly


     locate [-cimSs] [-d database] [-l limit] pattern [...]


     The locate utility searches a database for all pathnames which match the
     specified pattern. The database is recomputed periodically (usually week-
     ly or daily), and contains the pathnames of all files which are publicly

     Shell globbing and quoting characters ('*', '?', '\', '[', and ']') may
     be used in pattern, although they will have to be escaped from the shell.
     Preceding any character with a backslash ('\') eliminates any special
     meaning which it may have. The matching differs in that no characters
     must be matched explicitly, including slashes ('/').

     As a special case, a pattern containing no globbing characters ("foo") is
     matched as though it were "*foo*".

     Historically, locate stores only characters between 32 and 127. The
     current implementation stores all characters except newline ('\n') and
     NUL ('\0'). The 8-bit character support does not waste extra space for
     plain ASCII file names. Characters less than 32 or greater than 127 are
     stored as 2 bytes.

     The options are as follows:

     -c      Suppress normal output; instead print a count of matching file

     -d database
             Search in database instead of the default file name database.
             Multiple -d options are allowed. Each additional -d option adds
             the specified database to the list of databases to be searched.

             database may be a colon-separated list of databases. A single
             colon is a reference to the default database.

                   $ locate -d $HOME/lib/mydb: foo

             will first search for the string "foo" in $HOME/lib/mydb and then
             in /var/db/locate.database.

                   $ locate -d $HOME/lib/mydb::/cdrom/locate.database foo

             will first search for the string "foo" in $HOME/lib/mydb and then
             in /var/db/locate.database and then in /cdrom/locate.database.

                   $ locate -d db1 -d db2 -d db3 pattern

             is the same as

                   $ locate -d db1:db2:db3 pattern


                   $ locate -d db1:db2 -d db3 pattern

             If '-' is given as the database name, standard input will be read
             instead. For example, you can compress your database and use:

                   $ zcat database.gz | locate -d - pattern

             This might be useful on machines with a fast CPU, little RAM and
             slow I/O. Note: You can only use one pattern for stdin.

     -i      Ignore case distinctions in both the pattern and the database.

     -l number
             Limit output to number of file names and exit.

     -m      Use mmap(2) instead of the stdio(3) library. This is the default
             behavior. Usually faster in most cases.

     -S      Print some statistics about the database and exit.

     -s      Use the stdio(3) library instead of mmap(2).


     LOCATE_PATH  Path to the locate database if set and not empty; ignored if
                  the -d option was specified.


     /etc/weekly                   script that starts the database rebuild
     /usr/libexec/locate.updatedb  script to update the locate database
     /var/db/locate.database       locate database


     find(1), fnmatch(3), locate.updatedb(8), weekly(8)

     Woods, James A., "Finding Files Fast", ;login, 8:1, pp. 8-10, 1983.


     The locate command appeared in 4.4BSD.


     locate may fail to list some files that are present, or may list files
     that have been removed from the system. This is because locate only re-
     ports files that are present in a periodically reconstructed database
     (typically rebuilt once a week by the weekly(8) script). Use find(1) to
     locate files that are of a more transitory nature.

     The locate database is built by user "nobody" using find(1). This will
     skip directories which are not readable by user "nobody", group "nobody",
     or the world. E.g., if your home directory is not world-readable, your
     files will not appear in the database.

     The locate database is not byte order independent. It is not possible to
     share the databases between machines with different byte order. The
     current locate implementation understands databases in host byte order or
     network byte order. So a little-endian machine can't understand a locate
     database which was built on a big-endian machine.

MirBSD #10-current               June 6, 1993                                1

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