mv - move (rename) files


     mv [option...] source target
     mv [option...] source... target

     POSIX options:  [-fi]

     GNU options  (shortest  form):   [-bfiuv]  [-S  suffix]  [-V
     {numbered,existing,simple}] [--help] [--version] [--]


     mv moves or renames files or directories.

     If the last argument names an existing directory,  mv  moves
     each other given file into a file with the same name in that
     directory. Otherwise,  if  only  two  files  are  given,  it
     renames the first as the second.  It is an error if the last
     argument is not a directory and  more  than  two  files  are

     Thus, `mv /a/x/y /b' will rename the file /a/x/y  into  /b/y
     if /b was an existing directory, and into /b otherwise.

     Let us call the file a given file is going to be moved  into
     its  destination.   If destination exists, and either the -i
     option is given,  or  destination  is  unwritable,  standard
     input  is  a  terminal,  and  the -f option is not given, mv
     prompts the user for whether to replace the file, writing  a
     question to stderr and reading an answer from stdin.  If the
     response is not affirmative, the file is skipped.

     When both source and destination are on the same filesystem,
     they  are  the  same  file (just the name is changed; owner,
     mode, timestamps remain unchanged).  When they are  on  dif-
     ferent  filesystems,  the  source  file  is  copied and then
     deleted.  mv will copy modification time, access time,  user
     and group ID, and mode if possible. When copying user and/or
     group ID fails, the setuid and setgid bits  are  cleared  in
     the copy.


     -f   Do not prompt for confirmation.

     -i   Prompt for confirmation when destination  exists.   (In
          case both -f and -i are given, the last one given takes


     The GNU implementation (in fileutils-3.16) is broken in  the
     sense   that   mv   can   move  only  regular  files  across


     -f, --force
          Remove existing destination files and never prompt  the

     -i, --interactive
          Prompt whether to overwrite existing  regular  destina-
          tion  files. If the response does not begin with `y' or
          `Y', the file is skipped.

     -u, --update
          Do not move a nondirectory that has an existing  desti-
          nation with the same or newer modification time.

     -v, --verbose
          Print the name of each file before moving it.


     The GNU versions of programs like cp, mv,  ln,  install  and
     patch  will  make a backup of files about to be overwritten,
     changed or destroyed if that is desired. That  backup  files
     are  desired  is indicated by the -b option. How they should
     be named is specified by the -V option.  In case the name of
     the backup file is given by the name of the file extended by
     a suffix, this suffix is specified by the -S option.

     -b, --backup
          Make backups of files that are about to be  overwritten
          or removed.

     -S SUFFIX, --suffix=SUFFIX
          Append SUFFIX to each backup file made.  If this option
          is not specified, the value of the SIMPLE_BACKUP_SUFFIX
          environment    variable    is     used.      And     if
          SIMPLE_BACKUP_SUFFIX is not set, the default is `~'.

     -V METHOD, --version-control=METHOD
          Specify how backup files are named. The METHOD argument
          can  be  `numbered' (or `t'), `existing' (or `nil'), or
          `never' (or `simple').  If this option  is  not  speci-
          fied,  the  value  of  the  VERSION_CONTROL environment
          variable is used.  And if VERSION_CONTROL is  not  set,
          the default backup type is `existing'.

          This  option  corresponds   to   the   Emacs   variable
          `version-control'.    The  valid  METHODs  are  (unique
          abbreviations are accepted):

          t, numbered
               Always make numbered backups.

          nil, existing
               Make numbered backups of files that  already  have
               them, simple backups of the others.

          never, simple
               Always make simple backups.


          Print a usage message on standard output and exit  suc-

          Print version information on standard output, then exit

     --   Terminate option list.


     The  variables  LANG,  LC_ALL,  LC_COLLATE,   LC_CTYPE   and
     LC_MESSAGES have the usual meaning. For the GNU version, the
     variables SIMPLE_BACKUP_SUFFIX and  VERSION_CONTROL  control
     backup file naming, as described above.


     POSIX 1003.2, except that directory  hierarchies  cannot  be
     moved across filesystems.


     This page describes mv as found in the fileutils-3.16  pack-
     age;  other  versions  may differ slightly. Mail corrections
     and additions to  and  and  .   Report bugs in the program to