Linux – How to Find the Number of Files in a Directory

number of files, linux, ubuntu, red hat

Determining the number of files in a Linux directory or folder is a helpful task that every Linux user or system administrator should know. Whether it’s for organizing your workspace, auditing system resources, or performing essential system maintenance, understanding how to find the number of files can be beneficial. This guide will take you through the steps needed to easily find the number of files and calculate the file count in a Linux folder. We will focus on the top 3 Linux distributions: Ubuntu, CentOS, and Fedora.

How to Find the Number of Files in Ubuntu

Ubuntu, one of the most popular Linux distributions, offers a straightforward method to count the number of files in a directory.

  1. Open your Terminal application. This can be done by pressing Ctrl+Alt+T or searching for “Terminal” in your application menu.
  2. Navigate to the directory of interest using the cd command. For example, to go to the directory named ‘Documents’, you would enter cd Documents.
  3. Once you are in the desired directory, enter the following command to calculate the file count: ls -l | wc -l

The ls -l command lists all files and folders in the directory, and wc -l counts the number of lines outputted by the ls command. Thus, this combination effectively gives you the total number of files and subdirectories in the current directory.

Finding the Number of Files in CentOS

In CentOS, a widely-used Linux distribution in the corporate world, the process to find the number of files in a directory is similar to Ubuntu.

  1. Open the Terminal application.
  2. Use the cd command to navigate to the desired directory.
  3. Enter the following command to get the file count: ls -l | wc -l

It’s important to note that this command counts both files and directories. To exclusively count files, use the command ls -l | grep ^- | wc -l. The grep ^- part filters out directories from the output.

See also  How to Create MD5 Checksums and Validate a File in Windows/Linux

Finding File Count in Fedora Linux

Fedora, another robust and versatile Linux distribution, also uses a familiar method to find the number of files in a directory.

  1. Launch the Terminal application.
  2. Navigate to the directory in question using the cd command.
  3. Type in the command ls -l | wc -l to calculate the number of files and directories.

Just like in CentOS, if you want to count only the files, use ls -l | grep ^- | wc -l.

One important note is that these commands include subdirectories in the count. If you want to recursively count all files within a directory and its subdirectories, the find command can be used, like so: find . -type f | wc -l.

Whether you’re an experienced system administrator, a developer, or just a Linux hobbyist, knowing how to find the number of files efficiently can enhance your productivity, improve system organization and make your Linux experience more enjoyable.

Leave a Comment