mv - move files
mv [-fi] source target
mv [-fi] source ... directory
In its first form, the mv utility renames the file named by
operand to the destination path named by the target operand.
is assumed when the last operand does not name an already
In its second form, mv moves each file named by a source
operand to a
destination file in the existing directory named by the
operand. The destination path for each operand is the pathname produced
by the concatenation of the last operand, a slash, and the
component of the named file.
The options are as follows:
-f Do not prompt for confirmation before overwriting
-i Causes mv to write a prompt to standard error before
file that would overwrite an existing file. If the
the standard input begins with the character ``y'',
the move is
The last of any -f or -i options is the one which affects
It is an error for either the source operand or the destination path to
specify a directory unless both do.
If the destination path does not have a mode which permits
prompts the user for confirmation as specified for the -i
As the rename(2) call does not work across file systems, mv
and rm(1) to accomplish the move. The effect is equivalent
$ rm -f destination_path && cp -PRp
source_file destination && rm -rf source_file
The mv utility exits 0 on success or >0 if an error occurred.
$ mv -f foo bar
Rename file foo to bar, overwriting bar if it already exists.
$ mv -i -- -f bar
$ mv -i ./-f bar
Either of these commands will rename the file -f to bar,
confirmation if bar already exists.
The mv utility is expected to be IEEE Std 1003.2
A mv command appeared in Version 1 AT&T UNIX.
OpenBSD 3.6 May 31, 1993
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