Algorithm of find command

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# 1  
Old 09-16-2009
Algorithm of find command

Hi folks

I'm new here in this forum and hope to find someone who can help me.

I couldn't find a solution already posted in the forum.

Does anyone know what algorithm the shell command find uses? It looks like Top-Down but I need to be 100% sure. So can anyone confirm that?

Thx for your help
# 2  
Old 09-16-2009
I would say it is top-down, depth first, (i.e. not breadth first). If you do a simple find without options, then once it encounters a directory it starts to explore it and if it encounters a subdirectory there, it will do that one first etc... until it reaches the bottom and then it will go sideways and up again..


find . -print|more


# 3  
Old 09-16-2009
find uses ftw() or more likely ntfw(). Read the man page on those functions.
# 4  
Old 09-16-2009
Unix "find" does work broadly as described (by Scrutinizer) above but does not sort the input or output.
It's not even in inode number order.

Try this on a mature tree:

find . -exec ls -id '{}' \;

The stategy is altered by "-depth" parameter:

find . -depth -exec ls -id '{}' \;

Last edited by methyl; 09-16-2009 at 12:23 PM.. Reason: qualified "above".
# 5  
Old 09-22-2009
Thank you for your answers. I'm going to read the man pages and write my report.
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