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How to integrate mv command after find command?

Solutons:


With GNU mv:

find path_A -name '*AAA*' -exec mv -t path_B {} +

That will use find’s -exec option which replaces the {} with each find result in turn and runs the command you give it. As explained in man find:

   -exec command ;
          Execute  command;  true  if 0 status is returned.  All following
          arguments to find are taken to be arguments to the command until
          an  argument  consisting of `;' is encountered.  

In this case, we are using the + version of -exec so that we run as few mv operations as possible:

   -exec command {} +
          This  variant  of the -exec action runs the specified command on
          the selected files, but the command line is built  by  appending
          each  selected file name at the end; the total number of invoca‐
          tions of the command will  be  much  less  than  the  number  of
          matched  files.   The command line is built in much the same way
          that xargs builds its command lines.  Only one instance of  `{}'
          is  allowed  within the command.  The command is executed in the
          starting directory.

You could do something like below as well.

find path_A -name "*AAA*" -print0 | xargs -0 -I {} mv {} path_B

Where,

  1. -0 If there are blank spaces or characters (including newlines) many commands will not work. This option take cares of file names with
    blank space.
  2. -I Replace occurrences of replace-str in the initial-arguments with names read from standard input. Also, unquoted blanks do not
    terminate input items; instead the separator is the newline
    character.

Testing

I created two directories as sourcedir and destdir. Now, I created bunch of files inside sourcedir as file1.bak, file2.bak and file3 with spaces.bak

Now, I executed the command as,

find . -name "*.bak" -print0 | xargs -0 -I {} mv {} /destdir/

Now, inside the destdir, when I do ls, I could see that the files have moved from sourcedir to destdir.

References

http://www.cyberciti.biz/faq/linux-unix-bsd-xargs-construct-argument-lists-utility/

For the benefit of OS X users coming across this question, the syntax in OS X is slightly different. Assuming you do not want to search recursively in subdirectories of path_A:

find path_A -maxdepth 1 -name "*AAA*" -exec mv {} path_B ;

If you want to search all files recursively in path_A:

find path_A -name "*AAA*" -exec mv {} path_B ;

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