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/Elixir 1.5

File

This module contains functions to manipulate files.

Some of those functions are low-level, allowing the user to interact with files or IO devices, like open/2, copy/3 and others. This module also provides higher level functions that work with filenames and have their naming based on UNIX variants. For example, one can copy a file via cp/3 and remove files and directories recursively via rm_rf/1.

Paths given to functions in this module can be either relative to the current working directory (as returned by File.cwd/0), or absolute paths. Shell conventions like ~ are not expanded automatically. To use paths like ~/Downloads, you can use Path.expand/1 or Path.expand/2 to expand your path to an absolute path.

Encoding

In order to write and read files, one must use the functions in the IO module. By default, a file is opened in binary mode, which requires the functions IO.binread/2 and IO.binwrite/2 to interact with the file. A developer may pass :utf8 as an option when opening the file, then the slower IO.read/2 and IO.write/2 functions must be used as they are responsible for doing the proper conversions and providing the proper data guarantees.

Note that filenames when given as charlists in Elixir are always treated as UTF-8. In particular, we expect that the shell and the operating system are configured to use UTF-8 encoding. Binary filenames are considered raw and passed to the OS as is.

API

Most of the functions in this module return :ok or {:ok, result} in case of success, {:error, reason} otherwise. Those functions also have a variant that ends with ! which returns the result (instead of the {:ok, result} tuple) in case of success or raises an exception in case it fails. For example:

File.read("hello.txt")
#=> {:ok, "World"}

File.read("invalid.txt")
#=> {:error, :enoent}

File.read!("hello.txt")
#=> "World"

File.read!("invalid.txt")
#=> raises File.Error

In general, a developer should use the former in case they want to react if the file does not exist. The latter should be used when the developer expects their software to fail in case the file cannot be read (i.e. it is literally an exception).

Processes and raw files

Every time a file is opened, Elixir spawns a new process. Writing to a file is equivalent to sending messages to the process that writes to the file descriptor.

This means files can be passed between nodes and message passing guarantees they can write to the same file in a network.

However, you may not always want to pay the price for this abstraction. In such cases, a file can be opened in :raw mode. The options :read_ahead and :delayed_write are also useful when operating on large files or working with files in tight loops.

Check :file.open/2 for more information about such options and other performance considerations.

Summary

Types

io_device()
mode()
posix()
stat_options()

Functions

cd(path)

Sets the current working directory

cd!(path)

The same as cd/1, but raises an exception if it fails

cd!(path, function)

Changes the current directory to the given path, executes the given function and then reverts back to the previous path regardless of whether there is an exception

chgrp(path, gid)

Changes the group given by the group id gid for a given file. Returns :ok on success, or {:error, reason} on failure

chgrp!(path, gid)

Same as chgrp/2, but raises an exception in case of failure. Otherwise :ok

chmod(path, mode)

Changes the mode for a given file

chmod!(path, mode)

Same as chmod/2, but raises an exception in case of failure. Otherwise :ok

chown(path, uid)

Changes the owner given by the user id uid for a given file. Returns :ok on success, or {:error, reason} on failure

chown!(path, uid)

Same as chown/2, but raises an exception in case of failure. Otherwise :ok

close(io_device)

Closes the file referenced by io_device. It mostly returns :ok, except for some severe errors such as out of memory

copy(source, destination, bytes_count \\ :infinity)

Copies the contents of source to destination

copy!(source, destination, bytes_count \\ :infinity)

The same as copy/3 but raises an File.CopyError if it fails. Returns the bytes_copied otherwise

cp(source, destination, callback \\ fn _, _ -> true end)

Copies the contents in source to destination preserving its mode

cp!(source, destination, callback \\ fn _, _ -> true end)

The same as cp/3, but raises File.CopyError if it fails. Returns :ok otherwise

cp_r(source, destination, callback \\ fn _, _ -> true end)

Copies the contents in source to destination

cp_r!(source, destination, callback \\ fn _, _ -> true end)

The same as cp_r/3, but raises File.CopyError if it fails. Returns the list of copied files otherwise

cwd()

Gets the current working directory

cwd!()

The same as cwd/0, but raises an exception if it fails

dir?(path)

Returns true if the given path is a directory

exists?(path)

Returns true if the given path exists. It can be regular file, directory, socket, symbolic link, named pipe or device file

ln(existing, new)

Creates a hard link new to the file existing

ln!(existing, new)

Same as ln/2 but raises an exception if it fails

ln_s(existing, new)

Creates a symbolic link new to the file or directory existing

ln_s!(existing, new)

Same as ln_s/2 but raises an exception if it fails

ls(path \\ ".")

Returns the list of files in the given directory

ls!(path \\ ".")

The same as ls/1 but raises File.Error in case of an error

lstat(path, opts \\ [])

Returns information about the path. If the file is a symlink, sets the type to :symlink and returns a File.Stat struct for the link. For any other file, returns exactly the same values as stat/2

lstat!(path, opts \\ [])

Same as lstat/2 but returns the File.Stat struct directly, or throws File.Error if an error is returned

mkdir(path)

Tries to create the directory path. Missing parent directories are not created. Returns :ok if successful, or {:error, reason} if an error occurs

mkdir!(path)

Same as mkdir/1, but raises an exception in case of failure. Otherwise :ok

mkdir_p(path)

Tries to create the directory path. Missing parent directories are created. Returns :ok if successful, or {:error, reason} if an error occurs

mkdir_p!(path)

Same as mkdir_p/1, but raises an exception in case of failure. Otherwise :ok

open(path, modes_or_function \\ [])

Opens the given path

open(path, modes, function)

Similar to open/2 but expects a function as its last argument

open!(path, modes_or_function \\ [])

Similar to open/2 but raises an error if file could not be opened

open!(path, modes, function)

Similar to open/3 but raises an error if file could not be opened

read(path)

Returns {:ok, binary}, where binary is a binary data object that contains the contents of path, or {:error, reason} if an error occurs

read!(path)

Returns a binary with the contents of the given filename or raises File.Error if an error occurs

read_link(path)

Reads the symbolic link at path

read_link!(path)

Same as read_link/1 but returns the target directly or throws File.Error if an error is returned

regular?(path)

Returns true if the path is a regular file

rename(source, destination)

Renames the source file to destination file. It can be used to move files (and directories) between directories. If moving a file, you must fully specify the destination filename, it is not sufficient to simply specify its directory

rm(path)

Tries to delete the file path

rm!(path)

Same as rm/1, but raises an exception in case of failure. Otherwise :ok

rm_rf(path)

Removes files and directories recursively at the given path. Symlinks are not followed but simply removed, non-existing files are simply ignored (i.e. doesn’t make this function fail)

rm_rf!(path)

Same as rm_rf/1 but raises File.Error in case of failures, otherwise the list of files or directories removed

rmdir(path)

Tries to delete the dir at path. Returns :ok if successful, or {:error, reason} if an error occurs

rmdir!(path)

Same as rmdir/1, but raises an exception in case of failure. Otherwise :ok

stat(path, opts \\ [])

Returns information about the path. If it exists, it returns a {:ok, info} tuple, where info is a File.Stat struct. Returns {:error, reason} with the same reasons as read/1 if a failure occurs

stat!(path, opts \\ [])

Same as stat/2 but returns the File.Stat directly, or throws File.Error if an error is returned

stream!(path, modes \\ [], line_or_bytes \\ :line)

Returns a File.Stream for the given path with the given modes

touch(path, time \\ :calendar.universal_time())

Updates modification time (mtime) and access time (atime) of the given file

touch!(path, time \\ :calendar.universal_time())

Same as touch/2 but raises an exception if it fails

write(path, content, modes \\ [])

Writes content to the file path

write!(path, content, modes \\ [])

Same as write/3 but raises an exception if it fails, returns :ok otherwise

write_stat(path, stat, opts \\ [])

Writes the given File.Stat back to the filesystem at the given path. Returns :ok or {:error, reason}

write_stat!(path, stat, opts \\ [])

Same as write_stat/3 but raises an exception if it fails. Returns :ok otherwise

Types

io_device()

io_device() :: :file.io_device

mode()

mode ::
  :append |
  :binary |
  :charlist |
  :compressed |
  :delayed_write |
  :exclusive |
  :raw |
  :read |
  :read_ahead |
  :sync |
  :utf8 |
  :write |
  {:encoding, :latin1 | :unicode | :utf8 | :utf16 | :utf32 | {:utf16, :big | :little} | {:utf32, :big | :little}} |
  {:read_ahead, pos_integer} |
  {:delayed_write, non_neg_integer, non_neg_integer}

posix()

posix() :: :file.posix

stat_options()

stat_options() :: [{:time, :local | :universal | :posix}]

Functions

cd(path)

cd(Path.t) :: :ok | {:error, posix}

Sets the current working directory.

Returns :ok if successful, {:error, reason} otherwise.

cd!(path)

cd!(Path.t) :: :ok | no_return

The same as cd/1, but raises an exception if it fails.

cd!(path, function)

cd!(Path.t, (() -> res)) :: res when res: var

Changes the current directory to the given path, executes the given function and then reverts back to the previous path regardless of whether there is an exception.

Raises an error if retrieving or changing the current directory fails.

chgrp(path, gid)

chgrp(Path.t, non_neg_integer) :: :ok | {:error, posix}

Changes the group given by the group id gid for a given file. Returns :ok on success, or {:error, reason} on failure.

chgrp!(path, gid)

chgrp!(Path.t, non_neg_integer) :: :ok | no_return

Same as chgrp/2, but raises an exception in case of failure. Otherwise :ok.

chmod(path, mode)

chmod(Path.t, non_neg_integer) :: :ok | {:error, posix}

Changes the mode for a given file.

Returns :ok on success, or {:error, reason} on failure.

Permissions

File permissions are specified by adding together the following octal flags:

  • 0o400 - read permission: owner

  • 0o200 - write permission: owner

  • 0o100 - execute permission: owner

  • 0o040 - read permission: group

  • 0o020 - write permission: group

  • 0o010 - execute permission: group

  • 0o004 - read permission: other

  • 0o002 - write permission: other

  • 0o001 - execute permission: other

For example, setting the mode 0o755 gives it write, read and execute permission to the owner and both read and execute permission to group and others.

chmod!(path, mode)

chmod!(Path.t, non_neg_integer) :: :ok | no_return

Same as chmod/2, but raises an exception in case of failure. Otherwise :ok.

chown(path, uid)

chown(Path.t, non_neg_integer) :: :ok | {:error, posix}

Changes the owner given by the user id uid for a given file. Returns :ok on success, or {:error, reason} on failure.

chown!(path, uid)

chown!(Path.t, non_neg_integer) :: :ok | no_return

Same as chown/2, but raises an exception in case of failure. Otherwise :ok.

close(io_device)

close(io_device) :: :ok | {:error, posix | :badarg | :terminated}

Closes the file referenced by io_device. It mostly returns :ok, except for some severe errors such as out of memory.

Note that if the option :delayed_write was used when opening the file, close/1 might return an old write error and not even try to close the file. See open/2 for more information.

copy(source, destination, bytes_count \\ :infinity)

copy(Path.t | io_device, Path.t | io_device, pos_integer | :infinity) ::
  {:ok, non_neg_integer} |
  {:error, posix}

Copies the contents of source to destination.

Both parameters can be a filename or an IO device opened with open/2. bytes_count specifies the number of bytes to copy, the default being :infinity.

If file destination already exists, it is overwritten by the contents in source.

Returns {:ok, bytes_copied} if successful, {:error, reason} otherwise.

Compared to the cp/3, this function is more low-level, allowing a copy from device to device limited by a number of bytes. On the other hand, cp/3 performs more extensive checks on both source and destination and it also preserves the file mode after copy.

Typical error reasons are the same as in open/2, read/1 and write/3.

copy!(source, destination, bytes_count \\ :infinity)

copy!(Path.t | io_device, Path.t | io_device, pos_integer | :infinity) ::
  non_neg_integer |
  no_return

The same as copy/3 but raises an File.CopyError if it fails. Returns the bytes_copied otherwise.

cp(source, destination, callback \\ fn _, _ -> true end)

cp(Path.t, Path.t, (Path.t, Path.t -> boolean)) ::
  :ok |
  {:error, posix}

Copies the contents in source to destination preserving its mode.

If a file already exists in the destination, it invokes a callback which should return true if the existing file should be overwritten, false otherwise. The callback defaults to return true.

The function returns :ok in case of success, returns {:error, reason} otherwise.

If you want to copy contents from an IO device to another device or do a straight copy from a source to a destination without preserving modes, check copy/3 instead.

Note: The command cp in Unix systems behaves differently depending if destination is an existing directory or not. We have chosen to explicitly disallow this behaviour. If destination is a directory, an error will be returned.

cp!(source, destination, callback \\ fn _, _ -> true end)

cp!(Path.t, Path.t, (Path.t, Path.t -> boolean)) ::
  :ok |
  no_return

The same as cp/3, but raises File.CopyError if it fails. Returns :ok otherwise.

cp_r(source, destination, callback \\ fn _, _ -> true end)

cp_r(Path.t, Path.t, (Path.t, Path.t -> boolean)) ::
  {:ok, [binary]} |
  {:error, posix, binary}

Copies the contents in source to destination.

If the source is a file, it copies source to destination. If the source is a directory, it copies the contents inside source into the destination.

If a file already exists in the destination, it invokes callback. callback must be a function that takes two arguments: source and destination. The callback should return true if the existing file should be overwritten and false otherwise.

If a directory already exists in the destination where a file is meant to be (or vice versa), this function will fail.

This function may fail while copying files, in such cases, it will leave the destination directory in a dirty state, where file which have already been copied won’t be removed.

The function returns {:ok, files_and_directories} in case of success, files_and_directories lists all files and directories copied in no specific order. It returns {:error, reason, file} otherwise.

Note: The command cp in Unix systems behaves differently depending if destination is an existing directory or not. We have chosen to explicitly disallow this behaviour.

Examples

# Copies file "a.txt" to "b.txt"
File.cp_r "a.txt", "b.txt"

# Copies all files in "samples" to "tmp"
File.cp_r "samples", "tmp"

# Same as before, but asks the user how to proceed in case of conflicts
File.cp_r "samples", "tmp", fn source, destination ->
  IO.gets("Overwriting #{destination} by #{source}. Type y to confirm. ") == "y\n"
end

cp_r!(source, destination, callback \\ fn _, _ -> true end)

cp_r!(Path.t, Path.t, (Path.t, Path.t -> boolean)) ::
  [binary] |
  no_return

The same as cp_r/3, but raises File.CopyError if it fails. Returns the list of copied files otherwise.

cwd()

cwd() :: {:ok, binary} | {:error, posix}

Gets the current working directory.

In rare circumstances, this function can fail on Unix. It may happen if read permissions do not exist for the parent directories of the current directory. For this reason, returns {:ok, cwd} in case of success, {:error, reason} otherwise.

cwd!()

cwd!() :: binary | no_return

The same as cwd/0, but raises an exception if it fails.

dir?(path)

dir?(Path.t) :: boolean

Returns true if the given path is a directory.

This function follows symbolic links, so if a symbolic link points to a directory, true is returned.

Examples

File.dir?("./test")
#=> true

File.dir?("test")
#=> true

File.dir?("/usr/bin")
#=> true

File.dir?("~/Downloads")
#=> false

"~/Downloads" |> Path.expand |> File.dir?
#=> true

exists?(path)

exists?(Path.t) :: boolean

Returns true if the given path exists. It can be regular file, directory, socket, symbolic link, named pipe or device file.

Examples

File.exists?("test/")
#=> true

File.exists?("missing.txt")
#=> false

File.exists?("/dev/null")
#=> true

ln(existing, new)

Creates a hard link new to the file existing.

Returns :ok if successful, {:error, reason} otherwise. If the operating system does not support hard links, returns {:error, :enotsup}.

ln!(existing, new)

Same as ln/2 but raises an exception if it fails.

Returns :ok otherwise

ln_s(existing, new)

Creates a symbolic link new to the file or directory existing.

Returns :ok if successful, {:error, reason} otherwise. If the operating system does not support symlinks, returns {:error, :enotsup}.

ln_s!(existing, new)

Same as ln_s/2 but raises an exception if it fails.

Returns :ok otherwise

ls(path \\ ".")

ls(Path.t) :: {:ok, [binary]} | {:error, posix}

Returns the list of files in the given directory.

Returns {:ok, [files]} in case of success, {:error, reason} otherwise.

ls!(path \\ ".")

ls!(Path.t) :: [binary] | no_return

The same as ls/1 but raises File.Error in case of an error.

lstat(path, opts \\ [])

lstat(Path.t, stat_options) ::
  {:ok, File.Stat.t} |
  {:error, posix}

Returns information about the path. If the file is a symlink, sets the type to :symlink and returns a File.Stat struct for the link. For any other file, returns exactly the same values as stat/2.

For more details, see :file.read_link_info/2.

Options

The accepted options are:

  • :time - configures how the file timestamps are returned

The values for :time can be:

  • :universal - returns a {date, time} tuple in UTC (default)
  • :local - returns a {date, time} tuple using the machine time
  • :posix - returns the time as integer seconds since epoch

lstat!(path, opts \\ [])

lstat!(Path.t, stat_options) :: File.Stat.t | no_return

Same as lstat/2 but returns the File.Stat struct directly, or throws File.Error if an error is returned.

mkdir(path)

mkdir(Path.t) :: :ok | {:error, posix}

Tries to create the directory path. Missing parent directories are not created. Returns :ok if successful, or {:error, reason} if an error occurs.

Typical error reasons are:

  • :eacces - missing search or write permissions for the parent directories of path
  • :eexist - there is already a file or directory named path
  • :enoent - a component of path does not exist
  • :enospc - there is no space left on the device
  • :enotdir - a component of path is not a directory; on some platforms, :enoent is returned instead

mkdir!(path)

mkdir!(Path.t) :: :ok | no_return

Same as mkdir/1, but raises an exception in case of failure. Otherwise :ok.

mkdir_p(path)

mkdir_p(Path.t) :: :ok | {:error, posix}

Tries to create the directory path. Missing parent directories are created. Returns :ok if successful, or {:error, reason} if an error occurs.

Typical error reasons are:

  • :eacces - missing search or write permissions for the parent directories of path
  • :enospc - there is no space left on the device
  • :enotdir - a component of path is not a directory

mkdir_p!(path)

mkdir_p!(Path.t) :: :ok | no_return

Same as mkdir_p/1, but raises an exception in case of failure. Otherwise :ok.

open(path, modes_or_function \\ [])

open(Path.t, (io_device -> res)) ::
  {:ok, res} |
  {:error, posix} when res: var
open(Path.t, [mode | :ram]) ::
  {:ok, io_device} |
  {:error, posix}

Opens the given path.

In order to write and read files, one must use the functions in the IO module. By default, a file is opened in :binary mode, which requires the functions IO.binread/2 and IO.binwrite/2 to interact with the file. A developer may pass :utf8 as an option when opening the file and then all other functions from IO are available, since they work directly with Unicode data.

modes_or_function can either be a list of modes or a function. If it’s a list, it’s considered to be a list of modes (that are documented below). If it’s a function, then it’s equivalent to calling open(path, [], modes_or_function). See the documentation for open/3 for more information on this function.

The allowed modes:

  • :binary - opens the file in binary mode, disabling special handling of unicode sequences (default mode).

  • :read - the file, which must exist, is opened for reading.

  • :write - the file is opened for writing. It is created if it does not exist.

    If the file does exists, and if write is not combined with read, the file will be truncated.

  • :append - the file will be opened for writing, and it will be created if it does not exist. Every write operation to a file opened with append will take place at the end of the file.

  • :exclusive - the file, when opened for writing, is created if it does not exist. If the file exists, open will return {:error, :eexist}.

  • :charlist - when this term is given, read operations on the file will return charlists rather than binaries.

  • :compressed - makes it possible to read or write gzip compressed files.

    The compressed option must be combined with either read or write, but not both. Note that the file size obtained with stat/1 will most probably not match the number of bytes that can be read from a compressed file.

  • :utf8 - this option denotes how data is actually stored in the disk file and makes the file perform automatic translation of characters to and from UTF-8.

    If data is sent to a file in a format that cannot be converted to the UTF-8 or if data is read by a function that returns data in a format that cannot cope with the character range of the data, an error occurs and the file will be closed.

  • :delayed_write, :raw, :ram, :read_ahead, :sync, {:encoding, ...}, {:read_ahead, pos_integer}, {:delayed_write, non_neg_integer, non_neg_integer} - for more information about these options see :file.open/2.

This function returns:

  • {:ok, io_device} - the file has been opened in the requested mode.

    io_device is actually the PID of the process which handles the file. This process is linked to the process which originally opened the file. If any process to which the io_device is linked terminates, the file will be closed and the process itself will be terminated.

    An io_device returned from this call can be used as an argument to the IO module functions.

  • {:error, reason} - the file could not be opened.

Examples

{:ok, file} = File.open("foo.tar.gz", [:read, :compressed])
IO.read(file, :line)
File.close(file)

open(path, modes, function)

open(Path.t, [mode | :ram], (io_device -> res)) ::
  {:ok, res} |
  {:error, posix} when res: var

Similar to open/2 but expects a function as its last argument.

The file is opened, given to the function as an argument and automatically closed after the function returns, regardless if there was an error when executing the function.

Returns {:ok, function_result} in case of success, {:error, reason} otherwise.

This function expects the file to be closed with success, which is usually the case unless the :delayed_write option is given. For this reason, we do not recommend passing :delayed_write to this function.

Examples

File.open("file.txt", [:read, :write], fn(file) ->
  IO.read(file, :line)
end)

See open/2 for the list of available modes.

open!(path, modes_or_function \\ [])

open!(Path.t, (io_device -> res)) ::
  res |
  no_return when res: var
open!(Path.t, [mode | :ram]) :: io_device | no_return

Similar to open/2 but raises an error if file could not be opened.

Returns the IO device otherwise.

See open/2 for the list of available modes.

open!(path, modes, function)

open!(Path.t, [mode | :ram], (io_device -> res)) ::
  res |
  no_return when res: var

Similar to open/3 but raises an error if file could not be opened.

If it succeeds opening the file, it returns the function result on the IO device.

See open/2 for the list of available modes.

read(path)

read(Path.t) :: {:ok, binary} | {:error, posix}

Returns {:ok, binary}, where binary is a binary data object that contains the contents of path, or {:error, reason} if an error occurs.

Typical error reasons:

  • :enoent - the file does not exist
  • :eacces - missing permission for reading the file, or for searching one of the parent directories
  • :eisdir - the named file is a directory
  • :enotdir - a component of the file name is not a directory; on some platforms, :enoent is returned instead
  • :enomem - there is not enough memory for the contents of the file

You can use :file.format_error/1 to get a descriptive string of the error.

read!(path)

read!(Path.t) :: binary | no_return

Returns a binary with the contents of the given filename or raises File.Error if an error occurs.

read_link(path)

read_link(Path.t) :: {:ok, binary} | {:error, posix}

Reads the symbolic link at path.

If path exists and is a symlink, returns {:ok, target}, otherwise returns {:error, reason}.

For more details, see :file.read_link/1.

Typical error reasons are:

  • :einval - path is not a symbolic link
  • :enoent - path does not exist
  • :enotsup - symbolic links are not supported on the current platform

read_link!(path)

read_link!(Path.t) :: binary | no_return

Same as read_link/1 but returns the target directly or throws File.Error if an error is returned.

regular?(path)

regular?(Path.t) :: boolean

Returns true if the path is a regular file.

This function follows symbolic links, so if a symbolic link points to a regular file, true is returned.

Examples

File.regular? __ENV__.file #=> true

rename(source, destination)

rename(Path.t, Path.t) :: :ok | {:error, posix}

Renames the source file to destination file. It can be used to move files (and directories) between directories. If moving a file, you must fully specify the destination filename, it is not sufficient to simply specify its directory.

Returns :ok in case of success, {:error, reason} otherwise.

Note: The command mv in Unix systems behaves differently depending if source is a file and the destination is an existing directory. We have chosen to explicitly disallow this behaviour.

Examples

# Rename file "a.txt" to "b.txt"
File.rename "a.txt", "b.txt"

# Rename directory "samples" to "tmp"
File.rename "samples", "tmp"

rm(path)

rm(Path.t) :: :ok | {:error, posix}

Tries to delete the file path.

Returns :ok if successful, or {:error, reason} if an error occurs.

Note the file is deleted even if in read-only mode.

Typical error reasons are:

  • :enoent - the file does not exist
  • :eacces - missing permission for the file or one of its parents
  • :eperm - the file is a directory and user is not super-user
  • :enotdir - a component of the file name is not a directory; on some platforms, :enoent is returned instead
  • :einval - filename had an improper type, such as tuple

Examples

File.rm("file.txt")
#=> :ok

File.rm("tmp_dir/")
#=> {:error, :eperm}

rm!(path)

rm!(Path.t) :: :ok | no_return

Same as rm/1, but raises an exception in case of failure. Otherwise :ok.

rm_rf(path)

rm_rf(Path.t) :: {:ok, [binary]} | {:error, posix, binary}

Removes files and directories recursively at the given path. Symlinks are not followed but simply removed, non-existing files are simply ignored (i.e. doesn’t make this function fail).

Returns {:ok, files_and_directories} with all files and directories removed in no specific order, {:error, reason, file} otherwise.

Examples

File.rm_rf "samples"
#=> {:ok, ["samples", "samples/1.txt"]}

File.rm_rf "unknown"
#=> {:ok, []}

rm_rf!(path)

rm_rf!(Path.t) :: [binary] | no_return

Same as rm_rf/1 but raises File.Error in case of failures, otherwise the list of files or directories removed.

rmdir(path)

rmdir(Path.t) :: :ok | {:error, posix}

Tries to delete the dir at path. Returns :ok if successful, or {:error, reason} if an error occurs.

Examples

File.rmdir('tmp_dir')
#=> :ok

File.rmdir('file.txt')
#=> {:error, :enotdir}

rmdir!(path)

rmdir!(Path.t) :: :ok | {:error, posix}

Same as rmdir/1, but raises an exception in case of failure. Otherwise :ok.

stat(path, opts \\ [])

stat(Path.t, stat_options) ::
  {:ok, File.Stat.t} |
  {:error, posix}

Returns information about the path. If it exists, it returns a {:ok, info} tuple, where info is a File.Stat struct. Returns {:error, reason} with the same reasons as read/1 if a failure occurs.

Options

The accepted options are:

  • :time - configures how the file timestamps are returned

The values for :time can be:

  • :universal - returns a {date, time} tuple in UTC (default)
  • :local - returns a {date, time} tuple using the same time zone as the machine
  • :posix - returns the time as integer seconds since epoch

stat!(path, opts \\ [])

stat!(Path.t, stat_options) :: File.Stat.t | no_return

Same as stat/2 but returns the File.Stat directly, or throws File.Error if an error is returned.

stream!(path, modes \\ [], line_or_bytes \\ :line)

Returns a File.Stream for the given path with the given modes.

The stream implements both Enumerable and Collectable protocols, which means it can be used both for read and write.

The line_or_bytes argument configures how the file is read when streaming, by :line (default) or by a given number of bytes.

Operating the stream can fail on open for the same reasons as File.open!/2. Note that the file is automatically opened each time streaming begins. There is no need to pass :read and :write modes, as those are automatically set by Elixir.

Raw files

Since Elixir controls when the streamed file is opened, the underlying device cannot be shared and as such it is convenient to open the file in raw mode for performance reasons. Therefore, Elixir will open streams in :raw mode with the :read_ahead option unless an encoding is specified. This means any data streamed into the file must be converted to t:iodata/0 type. If you pass [:utf8] in the modes parameter, the underlying stream will use IO.write/2 and the String.Chars protocol to convert the data. See IO.binwrite/2 and IO.write/2 .

One may also consider passing the :delayed_write option if the stream is meant to be written to under a tight loop.

Byte order marks

If you pass :trim_bom in the modes parameter, the stream will trim UTF-8, UTF-16 and UTF-32 byte order marks when reading from file.

Examples

# Read in 2048 byte chunks rather than lines
File.stream!("./test/test.data", [], 2048)
#=> %File.Stream{line_or_bytes: 2048, modes: [:raw, :read_ahead, :binary],
#=> path: "./test/test.data", raw: true}

See Stream.run/1 for an example of streaming into a file.

touch(path, time \\ :calendar.universal_time())

touch(Path.t, :calendar.datetime) :: :ok | {:error, posix}

Updates modification time (mtime) and access time (atime) of the given file.

The file is created if it doesn’t exist. Requires datetime in UTC.

touch!(path, time \\ :calendar.universal_time())

touch!(Path.t, :calendar.datetime) :: :ok | no_return

Same as touch/2 but raises an exception if it fails.

Returns :ok otherwise. Requires datetime in UTC.

write(path, content, modes \\ [])

write(Path.t, iodata, [mode]) :: :ok | {:error, posix}

Writes content to the file path.

The file is created if it does not exist. If it exists, the previous contents are overwritten. Returns :ok if successful, or {:error, reason} if an error occurs.

content must be iodata (a list of bytes or a binary). Setting the encoding for this function has no effect.

Warning: Every time this function is invoked, a file descriptor is opened and a new process is spawned to write to the file. For this reason, if you are doing multiple writes in a loop, opening the file via File.open/2 and using the functions in IO to write to the file will yield much better performance than calling this function multiple times.

Typical error reasons are:

  • :enoent - a component of the file name does not exist
  • :enotdir - a component of the file name is not a directory; on some platforms, :enoent is returned instead
  • :enospc - there is no space left on the device
  • :eacces - missing permission for writing the file or searching one of the parent directories
  • :eisdir - the named file is a directory

Check File.open/2 for other available options.

write!(path, content, modes \\ [])

write!(Path.t, iodata, [mode]) :: :ok | no_return

Same as write/3 but raises an exception if it fails, returns :ok otherwise.

write_stat(path, stat, opts \\ [])

write_stat(Path.t, File.Stat.t, stat_options) ::
  :ok |
  {:error, posix}

Writes the given File.Stat back to the filesystem at the given path. Returns :ok or {:error, reason}.

write_stat!(path, stat, opts \\ [])

write_stat!(Path.t, File.Stat.t, stat_options) ::
  :ok |
  no_return

Same as write_stat/3 but raises an exception if it fails. Returns :ok otherwise.

© 2012–2017 Plataformatec
Licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0.
https://hexdocs.pm/elixir/1.5.0/File.html