[blfs-support] Comment/Question/Flame on "probably the most used admin tool", 'find'

Dan McGhee beesnees at grm.net
Mon Nov 4 12:56:17 PST 2013

On 11/04/2013 02:36 PM, alex lupu wrote:
> I'm saddened that after all these years there's apparently no easy way to
> do something like (expressed in Artificial Intelligence :):
> "Find files modified (accessed, created) in a range of time (in minutes)"
> "After but Before a time in minutes ago".
> Most people with PhD's in "find", claim you cannot create something 
> _simple_
> like,
> find ... -mmin -<beginofrange> -mmin +<endofrange> ...
> That despite of a voluminous, feature-rich and extremely detailed
> documentation and/or blogs.
> Despite various available ands, ors and the like, one can sprinkle around.
> Despite the clear explanations that the "-" means "after ... ago" and
> "+" means "before ... ago"  (or is it the other way around?  :).
> Despite the lack of warning that the "-" and "+" constructs do not work
> together.  Apparently one at a time
> You'd think that after the so called "old" find and the "stable" one 
> (since
> 2009) something like
> find ... -mmin -240 [-a/-o/whatnot] -mmin +120 ...
> would work.
> Any thoughts?
> Thanks,
> -- Alex
> PS.  I _am_ aware of more complicated solutions, with/without 'find'.
I don't know if you consider this simple or not, but you can easily get 
to a window 2 min wide.  I say that because I don't know if the file 
time stamps go to the seconds or not.  I know that they appear in 'ls 
-alQ' in whole minutes.

$ touch -t yyyymmddhhmm file1
$ touch -t yyyymmddhhmm file2
# file1 contains an earlier time and file2 contains a later time
$ find <path> -newer file1 \! -newer file2 -print

If the files were created this year you don't need yyyy.  So if you know 
a base time, you can search any time window from 1 min on either side to 
a window that opens sometime in the past and ends right now.

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