(emacs)Operating on Files
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Operating on Files
This section describes the basic Dired commands to operate on one
file or several files. All of these commands are capital letters; all
of them use the minibuffer, either to read an argument or to ask for
confirmation, before they act. All use the following convention to
decide which files to manipulate:
* If you give the command a numeric prefix argument N, it operates
on the next N files, starting with the current file. (If N is
negative, the command operates on the -N files preceding the
* Otherwise, if some files are marked with `*', the command operates
on all those files.
* Otherwise, the command operates on the current file only.
Here are the commands that operate on files in this way:
`C NEW RET'
Copy the specified files (`dired-do-copy'). The argument NEW is
the directory to copy into, or (if copying a single file) the new
If `dired-copy-preserve-time' is non-`nil', then copying with this
command sets the modification time of the new file to be the same
as that of the old file.
`R NEW RET'
Rename the specified files (`dired-do-rename'). The argument NEW
is the directory to rename into, or (if renaming a single file)
the new name.
Dired automatically changes the visited file name of buffers
associated with renamed files so that they refer to the new names.
`H NEW RET'
Make hard links to the specified files (`dired-do-hardlink'). The
argument NEW is the directory to make the links in, or (if making
just one link) the name to give the link.
`S NEW RET'
Make symbolic links to the specified files (`dired-do-symlink').
The argument NEW is the directory to make the links in, or (if
making just one link) the name to give the link.
`M MODESPEC RET'
Change the mode (also called "permission bits") of the specified
files (`dired-do-chmod'). This calls the `chmod' program, so
MODESPEC can be any argument that `chmod' can handle.
`G NEWGROUP RET'
Change the group of the specified files to NEWGROUP
`O NEWOWNER RET'
Change the owner of the specified files to NEWOWNER
(`dired-do-chown'). (On most systems, only the superuser can do
The variable `dired-chown-program' specifies the name of the
program to use to do the work (different systems put `chown' in
`P COMMAND RET'
Print the specified files (`dired-do-print'). You must specify the
command to print them with, but the minibuffer starts out with a
suitable guess made using the variables `lpr-command' and
`lpr-switches' (the same variables that `lpr-file' uses; *note
Compress or uncompress the specified files (`dired-do-compress').
If the file appears to be a compressed file, it is uncompressed;
otherwise, it is compressed.
Load the specified Emacs Lisp files (`dired-do-load'). Note: Lisp
Byte compile the specified Emacs Lisp files
(`dired-do-byte-compile'). Note: Byte Compilation
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