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NetBSD 6.1.5 - man page for cp (netbsd section 1)

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CP(1)				   BSD General Commands Manual				    CP(1)

NAME
     cp -- copy files

SYNOPSIS
     cp [-R [-H | -L | -P]] [-f | -i] [-alNpv] source_file target_file
     cp [-R [-H | -L | -P]] [-f | -i] [-alNpv] source_file ... target_directory

DESCRIPTION
     In the first synopsis form, the cp utility copies the contents of the source_file to the
     target_file.  In the second synopsis form, the contents of each named source_file is copied
     to the destination target_directory.  The names of the files themselves are not changed.  If
     cp detects an attempt to copy a file to itself, the copy will fail.

     The following options are available:

     -a    Archive mode.  Same as -RpP.

     -f    For each existing destination pathname, attempt to overwrite it.  If permissions do
	   not allow copy to succeed, remove it and create a new file, without prompting for con-
	   firmation.  (The -i option is ignored if the -f option is specified.)

     -H    If the -R option is specified, symbolic links on the command line are followed.  (Sym-
	   bolic links encountered in the tree traversal are not followed.)

     -i    Causes cp to write a prompt to the standard error output before copying a file that
	   would overwrite an existing file.  If the response from the standard input begins with
	   the character 'y', the file copy is attempted.

     -L    If the -R option is specified, all symbolic links are followed.

     -l    Create hard links to regular files in a hierarchy instead of copying.

     -N    When used with -p, don't copy file flags.

     -P    No symbolic links are followed.  This is the default.

     -p    Causes cp to preserve in the copy as many of the modification time, access time, file
	   flags, file mode, user ID, group ID, and extended attributes, as allowed by permis-
	   sions.

	   If the user ID and group ID cannot be preserved, no error message is displayed and the
	   exit value is not altered.

	   If the source file has its set user ID bit on and the user ID cannot be preserved, the
	   set user ID bit is not preserved in the copy's permissions.	If the source file has
	   its set group ID bit on and the group ID cannot be preserved, the set group ID bit is
	   not preserved in the copy's permissions.  If the source file has both its set user ID
	   and set group ID bits on, and either the user ID or group ID cannot be preserved, nei-
	   ther the set user ID or set group ID bits are preserved in the copy's permissions.

	   Extended attributes from all accessible namespaces are copied; others are ignored.  If
	   an error occurs during this copy, a message is displayed and cp skips the other
	   extended attributes for that file.

     -R    If source_file designates a directory, cp copies the directory and the entire subtree
	   connected at that point.  This option also causes symbolic links to be copied, rather
	   than followed, and for cp to create special files rather than copying them as normal
	   files.  Created directories have the same mode as the corresponding source directory,
	   unmodified by the process's umask.

     -v    Cause cp to be verbose, showing files as they are copied.

     For each destination file that already exists, its contents are overwritten if permissions
     allow, but its mode, user ID, and group ID are unchanged.

     In the second synopsis form, target_directory must exist unless there is only one named
     source_file which is a directory and the -R flag is specified.

     If the destination file does not exist, the mode of the source file is used as modified by
     the file mode creation mask (umask, see csh(1)).  If the source file has its set user ID bit
     on, that bit is removed unless both the source file and the destination file are owned by
     the same user.  If the source file has its set group ID bit on, that bit is removed unless
     both the source file and the destination file are in the same group and the user is a member
     of that group.  If both the set user ID and set group ID bits are set, all of the above con-
     ditions must be fulfilled or both bits are removed.

     Appropriate permissions are required for file creation or overwriting.

     Symbolic links are always followed unless the -R flag is set, in which case symbolic links
     are not followed, by default.  The -H or -L flags (in conjunction with the -R flag), as well
     as the -P flag cause symbolic links to be followed as described above.  The -H and -L
     options are ignored unless the -R option is specified.  In addition, these options override
     each other and the command's actions are determined by the last one specified.

EXIT STATUS
     The cp utility exits 0 on success, and >0 if an error occurs.

COMPATIBILITY
     Historic versions of the cp utility had a -r option.  This implementation supports that
     option, however, its use is strongly discouraged, as it does not correctly copy special
     files, symbolic links or fifo's.

SEE ALSO
     mv(1), rcp(1), umask(2), fts(3), symlink(7)

STANDARDS
     The cp utility is expected to be IEEE Std 1003.2 (``POSIX.2'') compatible.

     The -a and -l flags are non-standard extensions.  They are intended to be compatible with
     the same options which other implementations, namely GNU coreutils and FreeBSD, of this
     utility have.

     The -v option is an extension to IEEE Std 1003.2 (``POSIX.2'').

BSD					  August 3, 2011				      BSD
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