MTREE(8) BSD System Manager's Manual MTREE(8)
mtree -- map a directory hierarchy
mtree [-LPUcdeinqrux] [-f spec] [-K keywords] [-k keywords] [-p path]
[-s seed] [-X exclude-list]
The utility mtree compares the file hierarchy rooted in the current
directory against a specification read from the standard input. Messages
are written to the standard output for any files whose characteristics do
not match the specifications, or which are missing from either the file
hierarchy or the specification.
The options are as follows:
-L Follow all symbolic links in the file hierarchy.
-P Don't follow symbolic links in the file hierarchy, instead consider
the symbolic link itself in any comparisons. This is the default.
-U Modify the owner, group and permissions of existing files to match
the specification and create any missing directories or symbolic
links. User, group and permissions must all be specified for miss-
ing directories to be created. Corrected mismatches are not con-
-c Print a specification for the file hierarchy to the standard out-
-d Ignore everything except directory type files.
-e Don't complain about files that are in the file hierarchy, but not
in the specification.
-i Indent the output 4 spaces each time a directory level is descended
when create a specification with the -c option. This does not
affect either the /set statements or the comment before each direc-
tory. It does however affect the comment before the close of each
-n Do not emit pathname comments when creating a specification. Nor-
mally a comment is emitted before each directory and before the
close of that directory when using the -c option.
-q Quiet mode. Do not complain when a ``missing'' directory cannot be
created because it is already exists. This occurs when the direc-
tory is a symbolic link.
-r Remove any files in the file hierarchy that are not described in
-u Same as -U except a status of 2 is returned if the file hierarchy
did not match the specification.
-x Don't descend below mount points in the file hierarchy.
Read the specification from file, instead of from the standard
Add the specified (whitespace or comma separated) keywords to the
current set of keywords.
Use the ``type'' keyword plus the specified (whitespace or comma
separated) keywords instead of the current set of keywords.
Use the file hierarchy rooted in path, instead of the current
Display a single checksum to the standard error output that repre-
sents all of the files for which the keyword cksum was specified.
The checksum is seeded with the specified value.
The specified file contains fnmatch(3) patterns matching files to
be excluded from the specification, one to a line. If the pattern
contains a '/' character, it will be matched against entire path-
names (relative to the starting directory); otherwise, it will be
matched against basenames only. No comments are allowed in the
Specifications are mostly composed of ``keywords'', i.e. strings that
that specify values relating to files. No keywords have default values,
and if a keyword has no value set, no checks based on it are performed.
Currently supported keywords are as follows:
cksum The checksum of the file using the default algorithm speci-
fied by the cksum(1) utility.
flags The file flags as a symbolic name. See chflags(1) for infor-
mation on these names. If no flags are to be set the string
``none'' may be used to override the current default.
ignore Ignore any file hierarchy below this file.
gid The file group as a numeric value.
gname The file group as a symbolic name.
mode The current file's permissions as a numeric (octal) or sym-
nlink The number of hard links the file is expected to have.
nochange Make sure this file or directory exists but otherwise ignore
uid The file owner as a numeric value.
uname The file owner as a symbolic name.
size The size, in bytes, of the file.
link The file the symbolic link is expected to reference.
time The last modification time of the file.
type The type of the file; may be set to any one of the following:
block block special device
char character special device
file regular file
link symbolic link
The default set of keywords are flags, gid, mode, nlink, size, link,
time, and uid.
There are four types of lines in a specification.
The first type of line sets a global value for a keyword, and consists of
the string ``/set'' followed by whitespace, followed by sets of key-
word/value pairs, separated by whitespace. Keyword/value pairs consist
of a keyword, followed by an equals sign (``=''), followed by a value,
without whitespace characters. Once a keyword has been set, its value
remains unchanged until either reset or unset.
The second type of line unsets keywords and consists of the string
``/unset'', followed by whitespace, followed by one or more keywords,
separated by whitespace.
The third type of line is a file specification and consists of a file
name, followed by whitespace, followed by zero or more whitespace sepa-
rated keyword/value pairs. The file name may be preceded by whitespace
characters. The file name may contain any of the standard file name
matching characters (``['', ``]'', ``?'' or ``*''), in which case files
in the hierarchy will be associated with the first pattern that they
Each of the keyword/value pairs consist of a keyword, followed by an
equals sign (``=''), followed by the keyword's value, without whitespace
characters. These values override, without changing, the global value of
the corresponding keyword.
All paths are relative. Specifying a directory will cause subsequent
files to be searched for in that directory hierarchy. Which brings us to
the last type of line in a specification: a line containing only the
string ``..'' causes the current directory path to ascend one level.
Empty lines and lines whose first non-whitespace character is a hash mark
(``#'') are ignored.
The mtree utility exits with a status of 0 on success, 1 if any error
occurred, and 2 if the file hierarchy did not match the specification. A
status of 2 is converted to a status of 0 if the -U option is used.
/etc/mtree system specification directory
The mtree utility exits 0 on success, and >0 if an error occurs.
chflags(1), chgrp(1), chmod(1), cksum(1), stat(2), fts(3), chown(8)
The mtree utility appeared in 4.3BSD-Reno. The MD5 digest capability was
added in FreeBSD 2.1, in response to the widespread use of programs which
can spoof cksum(1). The SHA-1 and RIPEMD160 digests were added in
FreeBSD 4.0, as new attacks have demonstrated weaknesses in MD5. Support
for file flags was added in FreeBSD 4.0, and mostly comes from NetBSD.
BSD February 26, 1999 BSD