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This package contains the GNU find, xargs, and locate programs.  find
and xargs comply with POSIX 1003.2, as far as I know (with the
exception of the "+" modifier for the "-exec" action, which isn't
implemented yet).  They also support a large number of additional
options, some borrowed from Unix and some unique to GNU.

See the file NEWS for a list of major changes in the current release.

See the file INSTALL for compilation and installation instructions.

If there is no file INSTALL, you must be looking at the checked-out
source code instead of at an unpacked source tarball ("release").  In
that case, you should first please read and follow the instructions in
the file README-hacking.  Those instructions explain how to generate
the auto-generated files needed to build findutils, and this includes
generating the INSTALL file.

To verify the GPG signature of the release, you will need the public
key of the findutils maintainer.  You can download this from  Alternatively, you could query
a PGP keyserver, but you will need to use one that can cope with
subkeys containing photos.  Many older key servers cannot do this.  I
use  I think that one works.  See also the
"Downloading" section of

Special configure options:

  Make find support "-fstype afs".  Requires /afs, /usr/afsws/lib, and
/usr/afsws/include.  configure doesn't add AFS support
automatically because it adds considerably to find's size, and the
AFS libraries need -lucb on Solaris, which breaks find.

  If this environment variable is defined to a numeric expression
during configure, it determines the default argument size limits used
by xargs without -s, and by find, when spawning child processes.
Otherwise, the default is set at 128 kibibytes.  If the system cannot
support the default limit, the system's limit will be used instead.

To gain speed, GNU find avoids statting files whenever possible.
It does this by:
1. Checking the number of links to directories and not statting files
that it knows aren't directories until it encounters a test or action
that needs the stat info.
2.  Rearranging the command line, where possible, so that it can do
tests that don't require a stat before tests that do, in hopes that
the latter will be skipped because of a -o/-a conjunction.  (But it
only does this where it will leave the output unchanged.)

The locate program and its helper programs are derived (heavily
modified) from James Woods' public domain fast-find code, which is
also distributed with the 4.3BSD find.  Because POSIX.2 requires `find
foo' to have the same effect as `find foo -print', the fast-find
searching has been moved to a separate program, `locate'; the same
thing has been done in 4.4BSD.  If you use locate, you should run the
included `updatedb' script from cron periodically (typically nightly).

The latest full release is available at

The latest test release (if any) is available at

Discussion of the findutils package and ways to improve it takes place
on the "bug-findutils" mailing list, which you can join by sending
mail to  An archive of patches to the
bug-findutils mailing list is available at

Bug reports, suggested patches and enhancement requests for findutils
should be logged at

Changes to the findutils code are sent to the findutils-patches
mailing list.  To join, please send email to  You are also welcome to send patches to
that list, but unless you are a list subscriber, you won't be able to
follow any resulting discussion.  An archive of posts to the
findutils-patches mailing list is available at

See for instructions on
how to use git to access the findutils source code.

Mail suggestions and bug reports for these programs to


Copyright (C) 1996-2021 Free Software Foundation, Inc.

Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document
under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.3 or
any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no
Invariant Sections, with no Front-Cover Texts, and with no Back-Cover
Texts.  A copy of the license is included in the "GNU Free
Documentation License" file as part of this distribution.