Help on rsync delete option

jw schultz jw at
Fri Nov 1 17:20:02 EST 2002

On Fri, Nov 01, 2002 at 11:36:56AM -0500, Chaturvedi.Rajesh wrote:
> Hello, 
> Any help on the following issue will be appreciated. 
> How do I delete files or directories in my first level of directory that is
> specified as host. Here is an example : 
> rsync -avz --delete  ${SOURCE_HOST}:/mlinkfam/extract/sccs/pa/*
> /mlinkfam/extract/sccs/pa 
> Giving above command I find redundant files or directory not getting deleted
> from the first level of target directory /mlinkfam/extract/sccs/pa. However,
> files or directories do get deleted from  subdirectories
> /mlinkfam/extract/sccs/pa/qa or /mlinkfam/extract/sccs/pa/field. 

This isn't windows.  Your shell is responsible for globbing.

To spell that out lets assume this the source host looks
something like so (i'm shortening the paths for readabilty) :

	.	lots of other files and subdirs in pa/qa
	.	lots of other files and subdirs in pa/field

and the destination host has a file pa/oldanddeleted
in addition to the other stuff.

When you execute
	rsync -avz --delete /sccs/pa/* ${DEST_HOST}:/sccs/pa
The shell will glob to produce
	rsync -avz --delete /sccs/pa/qa /sccs/pa/field /sccs/pa/configdoodle ${DEST_HOST}:/sccs/pa
Which is the equivalent of
	rsync -avz --delete /sccs/pa/qa ${DEST_HOST}:/sccs/pa
	rsync -avz --delete /sccs/pa/field ${DEST_HOST}:/sccs/pa
	rsync -avz --delete /sccs/pa/configdoodle ${DEST_HOST}:/sccs/pa

In order to make this more readable i changed this to a push
the behavior and shell stuff will still apply.  The glob of
a remote source will be done by a shell on the remote host.

You haven't instructed rsync to operate on sccs/pa or on the
contents of sccs/pa but on a list of files and directories
that happen to be in sccs/pa.  Also of note, no dot files in
sccs/pa will be synced because * doesn't match any filename
starting with dot.

	rsync -avz --delete ${SOURCE_HOST}:/sccs/pa/ /sccs/pa
Will do what i think you want.  All the contents of sccs/pa
will be synced.

	J.W. Schultz            Pegasystems Technologies
	email address:		jw at

		Remember Cernan and Schmitt

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