cp – copy files and directories
cp [OPTION]… [-T] SOURCE DEST
cp [OPTION]… SOURCE… DIRECTORY
cp [OPTION]… -t DIRECTORY SOURCE…
Copy SOURCE to DEST, or multiple SOURCE(s) to DIRECTORY.
Mandatory arguments to long options are mandatory for short options too.
- -a, –archive
- same as -dR –preserve=all
- make a backup of each existing destination file
- like –backup but does not accept an argument
- copy contents of special files when recursive
- same as –no-dereference –preserve=links
- -f, –force
- if an existing destination file cannot be opened, remove it and try again (redundant if the -n option is used)
- -i, –interactive
- prompt before overwrite (overrides a previous -n option)
- follow command-line symbolic links in SOURCE
- -l, –link
- link files instead of copying
- -L, –dereference
- always follow symbolic links in SOURCE
- -n, –no-clobber
- do not overwrite an existing file (overrides a previous -i option)
- -P, –no-dereference
- never follow symbolic links in SOURCE
- same as –preserve=mode,ownership,timestamps
- preserve the specified attributes (default: mode,ownership,timestamps), if possible additional attributes: context, links, xattr, all
- same as –preserve=context
- don’t preserve the specified attributes
- use full source file name under DIRECTORY
- -R, -r, –recursive
- copy directories recursively
- control clone/CoW copies. See below.
- remove each existing destination file before attempting to open it (contrast with –force)
- control creation of sparse files. See below.
- remove any trailing slashes from each SOURCE argument
- -s, –symbolic-link
- make symbolic links instead of copying
- -S, –suffix=SUFFIX
- override the usual backup suffix
- -t, –target-directory=DIRECTORY
- copy all SOURCE arguments into DIRECTORY
- -T, –no-target-directory
- treat DEST as a normal file
- -u, –update
- copy only when the SOURCE file is newer than the destination file or when the destination file is missing
- -v, –verbose
- explain what is being done
- -x, –one-file-system
- stay on this file system
- -Z, –context=CONTEXT
- set security context of copy to CONTEXT
- display this help and exit
- output version information and exit
By default, sparse SOURCE files are detected by a crude heuristic and the corresponding DEST file is made sparse as well. That is the behavior selected by –sparse=auto. Specify –sparse=always to create a sparse DEST file whenever the SOURCE file contains a long enough sequence of zero bytes. Use –sparse=never to inhibit creation of sparse files.
When –reflink[=always] is specified, perform a lightweight copy, where the data blocks are copied only when modified. If this is not possible the copy fails, or if –reflink=auto is specified, fall back to a standard copy.
The backup suffix is ‘~’, unless set with –suffix or SIMPLE_BACKUP_SUFFIX. The version control method may be selected via the –backup option or through the VERSION_CONTROL environment variable. Here are the values:
- none, off
- never make backups (even if –backup is given)
- numbered, t
- make numbered backups
- existing, nil
- numbered if numbered backups exist, simple otherwise
- simple, never
- always make simple backups
As a special case, cp makes a backup of SOURCE when the force and backup options are given and SOURCE and DEST are the same name for an existing, regular file.
Written by Torbjorn Granlund, David MacKenzie, and Jim Meyering.
Report cp bugs to [email protected]
GNU coreutils home page: <http://www.gnu.org/software/coreutils/>
General help using GNU software: <http://www.gnu.org/gethelp/>
Report cp translation bugs to <http://translationproject.org/team/>
Copyright Â© 2010 Free Software Foundation, Inc. License GPLv3+: GNU GPL version 3 or later <http://gnu.org/licenses/gpl.html>.
This is free software: you are free to change and redistribute it. There is NO WARRANTY, to the extent permitted by law.
The full documentation for cp is maintained as a Texinfo manual. If the info and cp programs are properly installed at your site, the command
- info coreutils aqcp invocationaq
should give you access to the complete manual.
acl(5), cpdup(1), cpuset(7), dccp(1), enconv(1), gdbm(3), memcp(1), mirrordir(1), mksh(1), mkswap(8), rbldnsd(8), rcp(1), rdup-cp(1), rdup-cp(8), rdup-snap(1), rdup-snap(8), rsnapshot(1), rsync(1), spax(1), symlink(7), vcp(1), virt-sysprep(1)