BSD Compatibility Package Commands
NAME file - determine the type of a file by examining its contents
] [-m mfile
performs a series of tests on each filename
in an attempt to determine what it contains. If the contents of a file appear to be ASCII
examines the first 512 bytes and tries to guess its language.
uses the file /etc/magic
to identify files that have some sort of magic number
, that is, any file containing a numeric or string constant that indicates its type.
Check for format errors in the magic number file. For reasons of efficiency, this validation is not normally carried out. No file type-checking is done under -c.
Get a list of filenames to identify from ffile.
If a file is a symbolic link, test the file the link references rather than the link itself.
Use mfile as the name of an alternate magic number file.
EXAMPLES Example 1
on all the files in a specific user's directory.
This example illustrates the use of file
on all the files in a specific user's directory:
example% /usr/ucb/file *
code: mc68020 demand paged executable
code.c: c program text
counts: ascii text
doc: roff,nroff, or eqn input text
libz: archive random library
project: symbolic link to /usr/project
script: executable shell script
titles: ascii text
s5.stuff: cpio archive
ENVIRONMENT VARIABLES The environment variables LC_CTYPE, LANG, and LC_default control the character classification throughout file. On entry to file, these environment variables are checked in the following order: LC_CTYPE, LANG, and LC_default. When a valid value is found, remaining environment variables for character classification are ignored. For example, a new setting for LANG does not override the current valid character classification rules of LC_CTYPE. When none of the values is valid, the shell character classification defaults to the POSIX.1 "C" locale.
SEE ALSO magic(4), attributes(5)
often makes mistakes. In particular, it often suggests that command files are C programs.
does not recognize Pascal or LISP.