--delete and --files-from

Matt McCutchen matt at mattmccutchen.net
Wed Jun 25 23:51:39 GMT 2008

On Wed, 2008-06-25 at 16:26 -0400, Aaron Davies wrote:
> I want to maintain mirror of a sliding window of the last N  
> subdirectories of a particular directory. My first attempt was to use  
> ls -t|head to generate a list of dirs to pass to --files-from (with -- 
> recursive). It's working nicely to add the new files to the mirror  
> each day, but --delete isn't removing the old files (which are now  
> which are now outside the window and not in the --files-from file).
> My guess is that the subdirectories of the target directory not  
> mentioned in the --files-from file are not considered part of the sync  
> and are thus not considered for deletion. (Whereas if there were files  
> in directory inside the window that were present only on the remote  
> end, they *would* be deleted.)


> How would you suggest I fix this?

There's an enhancement request for a way to delete unlisted files with


Without the enhancement, the easiest thing to do is to use filters
instead of --files-from.  The files-to-excludes script that comes in
support/ of the rsync source tree will help you make the conversion


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