"[" and "]" characters in file names? - Suse

This is a discussion on "[" and "]" characters in file names? - Suse ; On my backup drives I organize my files like so... Directories that hold categories have the names enclosed in square bracket. i.e. "[Games]", "[Photos]". Directories that hold Suites or collections from a specific vendor are named in curly braces. i.e. ...

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Thread: "[" and "]" characters in file names?

  1. "[" and "]" characters in file names?

    On my backup drives I organize my files like so...

    Directories that hold categories have the names enclosed in square bracket.
    i.e. "[Games]", "[Photos]".

    Directories that hold Suites or collections from a specific vendor are named
    in curly braces. i.e. "{Adobe}", "{Apple}"

    These directories were created on a USB drive, formatted with NTFS.

    I can access the drive without any issues, but the folders containing the
    [ ] characters are not visible.

    Linux allows me to create files with the square brackets, so I don't know
    why these directories would not be visible or accessible.

    Any ideas how I can have these directories become visible?


  2. Re: "[" and "]" characters in file names?

    On Fri, 20 Jul 2007, in the Usenet newsgroup alt.os.linux.suse, in article
    , Noozer wrote:

    >On my backup drives I organize my files like so...
    >
    >Directories that hold categories have the names enclosed in square
    >bracket .i.e. "[Games]", "[Photos]".
    >
    >Directories that hold Suites or collections from a specific vendor are
    >named in curly braces. i.e. "{Adobe}", "{Apple}"


    And I'm sure the names look nice - but you're creating extra work for
    yourself, and crating some interesting opportunities for disasters.

    >These directories were created on a USB drive, formatted with NTFS.
    >
    >I can access the drive without any issues, but the folders containing the
    >[ ] characters are not visible.


    Yes. 'man bash' and look for "Compound Commands", "Parameters"... there
    are so many ways to shoot yourself in the foot.

    >Linux allows me to create files with the square brackets, so I don't
    >know why these directories would not be visible or accessible.


    The only characters not "legal" in a file name are the slash which is
    used as a directory separator, and the null byte (0x0) which is used to
    mark the end of a string. I don't use windoze, so microsoft may have
    also added other forbidden characters to their file system - you'll
    have to research that on your own. HOWEVER - you then have to play with
    the shell rules relating to wild-cards. Look in that man page for the
    section "Pathname Expansion". Your pretty name "[Games]" is being
    expanded by the shell into five names "G", "a", "m", "e" _or_ "s" - the
    letters you have told the shell are suitable equivalents when you
    enclosed those five letters in square brackets. As you don't have a
    directory named "G", "a", "m", "e" or "s" in the same place you
    stashed the "[Games]" directory, the shell can't find anything in them.
    Just because you _can_ do something doesn't mean it's a great idea.

    >Any ideas how I can have these directories become visible?


    Get rid of those square brackets, OR escape them then you try to refer
    to them (\[Games\]). The curly braces aren't the best idea either.

    Old guy

  3. Re: "[" and "]" characters in file names?

    Moe Trin wrote:
    > Get rid of those square brackets, OR escape them then you try to refer
    > to them (\[Games\]). The curly braces aren't the best idea either.


    If they aren't best idea, then why add them? Now you need to do
    '\(\[Games\]\)\'. Wait "\'\(\[....

    ;-)

    I remember having problems with files starting with a dash, like -File.
    To move them you need to do `rm -- -File`

    houghi
    --
    Let's not be too tough on our own ignorance. It's the thing that makes
    America great. If America weren't incomparably ignorant, how could we
    have tolerated the last eight years? -- Frank Zappa, in 1988

  4. Re: "[" and "]" characters in file names?

    On Sat, 21 Jul 2007, in the Usenet newsgroup alt.os.linux.suse, in article
    , houghi wrote:

    >I remember having problems with files starting with a dash, like -File.
    >To move them you need to do `rm -- -File`


    They might 'move' better if you used the 'mv' command, but hey, an 'rm'
    command does move the file to another area of your mind

    Actually, that's been a part of various FAQs since before Linus started
    playing with a 386 in 1991. Lessee, I guess Ted Timar isn't posting the
    UNIX FAQ to comp.unix.questions, comp.unix.shell, comp.answers, and
    news.answers any more, but the second part (of seven) began

    Archive-name: unix-faq/faq/part2
    Version: $Id: part2,v 2.9 1996/06/11 13:07:56 tmatimar Exp $

    This article includes answers to:

    2.1) How do I remove a file whose name begins with a "-" ?
    2.2) How do I remove a file with funny characters in the filename ?

    Any search engine should find it - if it's not at rtfm.mit.edu in the
    directory pub/usenet/news.answers.

    There actually are many possible solutions - everything from using the
    double dash in GNU commands, to using more of the filename (relative or
    absolute filenames work great), using wild-cards (very carefully) and so
    on. The problem existed several decades ago, and so have the solutions.
    Sometimes you may need to actually think - like when you get filenames
    that contain 'control characters' such as a Control-U (^U) which can be
    good for a lot of laughter - but it's not like this is a new concept.

    Old guy

  5. Re: "[" and "]" characters in file names?


    "Noozer" wrote in message
    news:hE4oi.131845$xq1.19010@pd7urf1no...
    > I can access the drive without any issues, but the folders containing the
    > [ ] characters are not visible.


    It turned out to be a corrupt filesystem and it was just a coincidence that
    if affected those particular directories.

    Files moved, drive formatted, files moved back and all is well.



  6. Re: "[" and "]" characters in file names?

    Moe Trin wrote:
    > On Sat, 21 Jul 2007, in the Usenet newsgroup alt.os.linux.suse, in article
    > , houghi wrote:
    >
    >>I remember having problems with files starting with a dash, like -File.
    >>To move them you need to do `rm -- -File`

    >
    > They might 'move' better if you used the 'mv' command, but hey, an 'rm'
    > command does move the file to another area of your mind


    :-) Oops.

    > Actually, that's been a part of various FAQs since before Linus started
    > playing with a 386 in 1991. Lessee, I guess Ted Timar isn't posting the
    > UNIX FAQ to comp.unix.questions, comp.unix.shell, comp.answers, and
    > news.answers any more, but the second part (of seven) began


    Yes, yet as a beginner it can be frustrating when you do not know it. It
    is great when you have the solution, because that makes it easier to
    find it.

    houghi
    --
    First we thought the PC was a calculator. Then we found out how to turn
    numbers into letters with ASCII and we thought it was a typewriter. Then
    we discovered graphics, and we thought it was television. With the World
    Wide Web, we've realized it's a brochure. -- Douglas Adams.

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