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LPI Linux Essentials Exam 010-160 - Topic 2.4 - Create, Copy, Move & Delete Files

Managing files is a fundamental skill when working with Linux systems. In this guide we will focus on the key commands touch, cp, mv, and rm.

Whereas Windows operating systems are case insensitive, Linux operating system are case sensitive. Files myfile.txt and MyFile.TXT are two different files.

Creating Files

The touch command can be used to create empty files..

To create a single empty file:

touch filename

With the touch command, if the file already exists, then the access and modification time of the file is updated to the current time.

Copying Files

The cp command is used to copy files to another location or you can create a backup copy of a file in the same location.

To copy a file to another location:

cp source_file destination_directory/

To create a backup copy of the file in the same location:

cp source_file source_file.bak

Moving & Renaming Files

The mv command is used to move files to a different location and can also be used for renaming files.

To rename a file:

mv old_filename new_filename

To move a file to a different location:

mv filename /new/location/

Deleting Files

The rm command is used to delete files. This command is critical for managing unwanted or unnecessary files.

To delete a single file:

rm filename


In the following exercise, you will practice creating, copying, moving, and deleting files:

Exercise: Create, copy, move & delete files:

The -v option is used for many commands to provide verbose output, which confirms the successful execution of commands.

Create a directory to practice in:

mkdir -pv ~/lpi_24_files

Switch to the lpi_24_files directory:

cd ~/lpi_24_files

Create a new empty file named my_file.txt:

touch my_file.txt

Copy my_file.txt to your home directory:

cp -v my_file.txt ~/

Move my_file.txt to the /tmp directory:

mv -v my_file.txt /tmp/

Delete both versions of the my_file.txt file:

rm -v /tmp/my_file.txt
rm -v ~/my_file.txt

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