Zsh Mailing List Archive
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Emulating 'locate'

    Hi all :))

    Assuming that 'print /**/*' will print all filenames from the
root directory, recursive globbing could be used, for example, as a
poor-man substitute of 'locate'. But there is a problem. Let's assume
this hierarchy:


    If we issue the command 'locate ir3', then locate will find all
the files above, and will show all paths. But if we issue what I
thought that was equivalente: 'print -l /**/*ir3*', then the output
is just '/dir1/dir2/dir3'.

    I'm obviously wrong, but don't know where: the above matches any
number of directories (well /(*/)#...), followed by any character,
ir3 and again any character. Well, I suppose that slashes must be
matched explicitly (that is what ** is for...), so I do 'print -l
/**/*ir3*/**'. Voilá, now it matches ok :))) and the result is the
same as locate. Problem solved? Not at all.

    Let do 'locate ir2'. The list of output files is the same as
'locate ir3' (well, it outputs a couple of dirs more). But if I do
'print -l /**/*ir2*/**' I only get '/dir1/dir2/dir3' :((( In fact,
adding more ** doesn't work: 'print /**/*ir2*/**/**' just outputs
'/dir1/dir2/ /dir1/dir2/dir3/ /dir1/dir2/dir3'

    Resuming: I'm again clueless and in addition to this I don't
understand correctly the filename generation and recursive globbing.
Anyone can explain a bit what I'm doing wrong so I can use zsh
instead of 'locate'?.

    For those interested: yes, locate may be faster than zsh
(although using a database, like locate does, may change things), but
it reveals files not accesible, nor even listable, by the current
user if the database was build with root privileges. Zsh won't, being
a bit more secure. There are a slocate out there, too, but... well,
it's zsh ;)))

    Thanks a lot again :)

    Raúl Núñez de Arenas Coronado

Linux Registered User 88736
http://www.pleyades.net & http://raul.pleyades.net/

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