Unix / Linux: Check New Files In File System /var/www/uploads/

Recently, I switched from MS-Windows based web-server to CentOS Linux based Apache web-server. All user uploaded files are stored in /var/www/uploads/ directory. Is there command that can give me a list of files that have been added to the filesystem at /var/www/uploads/ in last 7 days on Linux/Unix-like oses?

You need to use the following commands: [donotprint]
Tutorial details
Difficulty level Intermediate
Root privileges No
Requirements None
Est. reading time 5m
  1. date command – Get the system date.
  2. touch command – Create a file and set file timestamps using date command.
  3. find command – Search for files in file system as per given condition.

Step #1: Get the current date

Type the following date command to get the date as per your requirements:

## get old date i.e. if today is 27/Jan get 20/Jan in $d ##
d=$(date +"%Y-%m-%d" --date="7 days ago")
echo "$d"

Sample outputs:


Step #2: Create a new file

Type the following touch command:

touch --date "$d" "$file"
echo "$file"
ls -l "$file"

Sample outputs:

-rw-r--r--. 1 nixcraft nixcraft 0 Jan 20 00:00 /tmp/test.txt.17697

Step #3: List newer files

To find files in the /var/www/upload/ directory tree that are newer than the $file (/tmp/test.txt.17697 file), use the find command as follows:

find /var/www/upload/ -newer $file


find /var/www/upload/ -type f -newer $file


find /var/www/upload/ -type f -iname "*.jpg" -newer $file


find /var/www/upload/ -iname "*.jpg" -newer $file -ls

OR bsd/unix safe options:

find /var/www/upload/ -name "*.jpg" -newer $file -exec ls -l {} \;

Sample outputs:

15728917   20 -r--r--r--   1 cyberciti cyberciti    18144 Jan 27 06:47 ./01/last-command-output-300x118.jpg
11534726   92 -r--r--r--   1 cyberciti cyberciti    91370 Jan 27 06:47 ./01/last-command-output.jpg
11534720   12 -r--r--r--   1 cyberciti cyberciti     9691 Jan 27 03:44 ./01/who-command.jpg
11534721  104 -r--r--r--   1 cyberciti cyberciti   104077 Jan 27 04:08 ./01/who-command-output.jpg

A shell script to check new files in the file system

# A quick shell script to show new files added to the file system
# Syntax ./script /path/to/dir days 
# Defaults ./script $PWD 3 
# Author: nixCraft <webmaster@cyberciti.biz> under GPL v2.x+
# -----------------------------------------------------------------
_now=$(date +"%Y-%m-%d" --date="${2:-3} days ago")
# a bad idea but I'm too lazy
touch --date "$_now" "$_f"
find "$_d" -type f -newer "$_f"
/bin/rm -f "$_f"

Sample outputs:


./script 7 /var/www/uploads/

find command mtime option

Pass the -mtime n option to find command to get file’s data was last modified n*24 hours ago, so:

## List files uploaded in last 3 days directly using find command ###
## GNU/Linux specific example ##
find /var/www/uploads/ -iname "*.jpg" -type f -mtime -3 -ls

OR try the following bsd/unix specific example:

## list files uploaded in last 3 days directly using find command ###
find . -iname "*.jpg" -type f -mtime -3 -print0 | xargs -I {} -0 ls -l "{}"
Recommended readings

🐧 Get the latest tutorials on Linux, Open Source & DevOps via RSS feed or Weekly email newsletter.

🐧 7 comments so far... add one

CategoryList of Unix and Linux commands
Disk space analyzersdf duf ncdu pydf
File Managementcat cp mkdir tree
FirewallAlpine Awall CentOS 8 OpenSUSE RHEL 8 Ubuntu 16.04 Ubuntu 18.04 Ubuntu 20.04
Modern utilitiesbat exa
Network UtilitiesNetHogs dig host ip nmap
OpenVPNCentOS 7 CentOS 8 Debian 10 Debian 8/9 Ubuntu 18.04 Ubuntu 20.04
Package Managerapk apt
Processes Managementbg chroot cron disown fg glances gtop jobs killall kill pidof pstree pwdx time vtop
Searchingag grep whereis which
User Informationgroups id lastcomm last lid/libuser-lid logname members users whoami who w
WireGuard VPNAlpine CentOS 8 Debian 10 Firewall Ubuntu 20.04
7 comments… add one
  • Ben Stokes Feb 2, 2014 @ 9:12

    Based on your original ask “list of files that have been added to the filesystem at /var/www/uploads/ in last 7 days”, this would also work:

    find /var/www/upload/ -type f -mtime -7

    • 🐧 Nix Craft Feb 2, 2014 @ 9:53

      Yes, I should have included an example of find command. I appreciate your post.

  • Bảo Nam Feb 5, 2014 @ 8:13

    Thanks, it’s very helpful

  • Emad Feb 6, 2014 @ 8:47

    Very usefull, thank you.

  • Anderson Deluiz Feb 12, 2014 @ 17:21

    If you upload a file by SFTP or FTP, for example, and that fiile was created more than 7 days ago mtime option may not work. It’s better to use ctime instead

    # find /var/www/upload/ -type f -ctime -7

    Also take a look at “stat” command.

  • KAOUAM ILYASS Apr 29, 2016 @ 11:35

    Thank you

  • Ketan Jan 10, 2017 @ 13:31

    Hi.. I want to know the time when i place a file on server using wnscp, is there any command to know..?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Use HTML <pre>...</pre> for code samples. Still have questions? Post it on our forum