Command-line tool to find and list/delete duplicate files





fdupes is a simple software for identifying or deleting duplicate files residing within specified directories.

fdupes can also delete the found duplicate files if instructed. fdupes can follow Symlinks and can be instructed to ignore hardlinks. fdupes can also show the size of the duplicate files.

fdupes is a simple and very efficient tool, easy to use.

Installing fdupes:

To install the program, issue the following commands:

make fdupes
su root
make install


Usage: fdupes [options] DIRECTORY...

 -r --recurse         include files residing in subdirectories
 -s --symlinks        follow symlinks
 -H --hardlinks       normally, when two or more files point to the same
                      disk area they are treated as non-duplicates; this
                      option will change this behavior
 -n --noempty         exclude zero-length files from consideration
 -f --omitfirst       omit the first file in each set of matches
 -1 --sameline        list each set of matches on a single line
 -S --size            show size of duplicate files
 -q --quiet           hide progress indicator
 -d --delete          prompt user for files to preserve and delete all
                      others; important: under particular circumstances,
                      data may be lost when using this option together
                      with -s or --symlinks, or when specifying a
                      particular directory more than once; refer to the
                      fdupes documentation for additional information
 -v --version         display fdupes version
 -h --help            display this help message

Unless -1 or --sameline is specified, duplicate files are listed  together in groups, each file displayed on a separate line. The groups are then separated from each other by blank lines.

When -1 or --sameline is specified, spaces and backslash characters () appearing in a filename are preceded by a backslash character. For instance, "with spaces" becomes "with spaces".

When using -d or --delete, care should be taken to insure against accidental data loss. While no information will be immediately lost, using this option together with -s or --symlink can lead to confusing information being presented to the user when prompted for files to preserve. Specifically, a user could accidentally preserve a symlink while deleting the file it points to. A similar problem arises when specifying a particular directory more than once. All files within that directory will be listed as their own duplicates, leading to data loss should a user preserve a file without its "duplicate" (the file itself!).
Last updated on September 12th, 2011
fdupes - Usage message

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