Shell Scripting Hack: cp Command With a Progress bar

last updated in Categories Howto, Linux, Shell scripting

This is a nice shell scripting hack. It allows you to give a progress bar like wget to cp command.

Posted by: Vivek Gite

The author is the creator of nixCraft and a seasoned sysadmin, DevOps engineer, and a trainer for the Linux operating system/Unix shell scripting. Get the latest tutorials on SysAdmin, Linux/Unix and open source topics via RSS/XML feed or weekly email newsletter.

12 comment

  1. drivesoslow / Jerod ,

    Open a shell prompt and just paste the code. Type the following (it will not work with wildcards)
    cp_p /path/to/big/file.ext /copy/here

  2. Vivek,

    This is cool and all, but the overhead of strace make this not very useful. rsync -av shows a progress bar. You can also get a progress bar if you use scp locally. Yes, scp supports local file transfers without using any network or connecting to a local sshd instance.

    jeff@omniscience:~$ du -h windows.tar.bz2
    822M windows.tar.bz2
    
    jeff@omniscience:~$ time cp_p windows.tar.bz2{,.new}
    99% [====================================================================================================>]
    
    real 2m18.957s
    user 0m11.589s
    sys 0m23.469s
    jeff@omniscience:~$ ls window*
    windows.tar.bz2 windows.tar.bz2.new
    jeff@omniscience:~$ time cp windows.tar.bz2{,.new2}
    
    real 1m39.597s
    user 0m0.096s
    sys 0m5.092s
  3. LOL at the nubs who can’t get this to work. Go back to your Vista box and stay there.

    Only thing I had to do was set my terminal to ANSI. Also, the width of this progress bar is fixed, it will not scale with the width of your terminal.

    Also note that for trivial transfers they might complete before the script has a chance to output the progress bar. So if the file copies and you didn’t see a progress bar, it’s because you didn’t need one.

    yes scp and rsync are alternatives but this is very cool nonetheless. Thank you for posting it!

  4. Altho my system didn’t support bar I did find pipeview (pv):

    srcdir=$1
    outfile=$2

    tar -Ocf – $srcdir | pv -i 1 -w 50 -berps `du -bs $srcdir | awk ‘{print $1}’` |
    7za a -si $outfile

  5. This script doen’t work… And what is it for anyway, rsync does the same job without all this mumbo-jumbo of arkward custom scripts.

    Have a question? Post it on our forum!