Adventures in Machine Learning

Efficiently Manage Files with Shutil: Your Ultimate Guide

Copy and Move Files with shutil Module: Your Ultimate Guide

Have you found yourself in a situation where you need to make a copy or move a folder or file on your computer? If yes, then you might have struggled with getting it done efficiently.

You might have also faced the challenge of copying metadata along with your files. However, the solution to your problem could be using the python module called shutil.

Shutil is a python module that provides a diverse range of functions that you can use to copy, move, or delete files, folders, and directories. In this article, you will learn about the six main functions within shutil that you can use to copy and move files or directories.

So, let’s dive in.

Copying Files with Shutil

1. Copying files with shutil.copyfileobj:

This function is primarily used to copy a file as a binary file, creating it if it does not exist.

The copyfileobj function requires you to pass in two arguments – the source file and the destination file. However, you can also use the shutil.copyfileobj function to copy a specific portion of a file.

To do this, you can use the read() function to extract the portion you desire, then use the write() function to copy the extracted portion to your destination. 2.

Copying files with shutil.copy:

This function is used to copy files on your computer. The shutil.copy function requires you to pass in two arguments – the source file and the destination file.

The destination file can either be a folder or a new file name. 3.

Copying files with shutil.copy2:

This function works like the shutil.copy function when copying files. However, it also preserves all the original file metadata, such as the creation date and permissions.

The shutil.copy2 function requires you to pass in two arguments – the source file and the destination file. 4.

Copying files with shutil.copyfile:

This function is used to copy a file from one location to another. It’s similar to the shutil.copy function, but it’s used when you want to overwrite the destination file.

The shutil.copyfile function requires you to pass in two arguments – the source file and the destination file. 5.

Moving files with shutil.move:

This function is used to move files or folders to a new destination. The shutil.move function requires you to pass in two arguments – the source file or folder and the destination folder or file name.

Copying Folders with Shutil

6. Copying folders with shutil.copytree:

This function is used to copy a folder from one location to another.

The shutil.copytree function requires you to pass in two arguments – the source folder and the destination folder.

Removing Files with Shutil

7. Removing files with shutil.rmtree:

This function is used to remove a folder or directory and all its contents.

The shutil.rmtree function requires you to pass in one argument – the path of the directory or folder you want to remove.

Rhetorical devices

Now that you have a basic understanding of how to use the shutil module to copy, move, and remove files and folders, you might be wondering how easy the process can be. The use of subheadings has broken the content into easier bite-size pieces that you can easily read and explore.

To make things more engaging and memorable, we shall take advantage of more literary devices, such as imagery, comparisons, and repetition. These will help to hold your attention, show you the reliability of shutil, and enrich your understanding of the topic.

Imagery

Have you ever tried to move or copy a massive file or folder on your computer, and it felt like carrying a heavy backpack around all day long? With the shutil module, you can easily move or copy multiple files at once with a few lines of code, just like a moving company with a moving truck.

Comparisons

If you’ve ever used the basic copy and paste strategy on your computer, you could compare it to trying to build a house with a set of toy blocks. Although it gets the job done, the process can be confusing, messy, and inefficient.

The shutil module, on the other hand, is like a full set of construction tools that professionals use.

Repetition

The phrase “pass in” has been used several times in this article when describing how to use various functions in the shutil module. This is an example of repetition, which emphasizes the importance of the phrase and helps you learn how to use the functions effectively.

In conclusion, we’ve discussed the six main functions of the shutil module, how to use them, and how the use of rhetorical devices helps to keep readers engaged and enhances their understanding. Now you can use the shutil easefully to move, copy, or remove any files or folders on your computer.

Copying Permission Bits of Files

When copying files from one location to another, it’s important to preserve the original permissions for security and operational reasons. Python’s shutil module provides two functions to copy file permissions – shutil.copymode and shutil.copystat.

1. Copying Permission Bits with shutil.copymode

The shutil.copymode function is used to copy the permission bits of a file, allowing you to preserve the original file permissions such as the read, write, and execute attributes.

The function does not copy the file content or metadata such as the modification date and ownership attributes. To use the shutil.copymode function, you need to pass in the source file and the destination file path strings as arguments.

The function copies the permission bits of the source file to the destination file, and if the destination file doesn’t exist, it creates one with the same permission bits. Here’s a code snippet demonstrating how to use the shutil.copymode function:

“`python

import shutil

shutil.copymode(‘/path/to/source/file’, ‘/path/to/destination/file’)

“`

2. Copying Permission Bits with shutil.copystat

The shutil.copystat function is used to copy the file metadata along with its original permission bits, allowing you to preserve the original file permissions, modification time, and inode/ownership information of a file.

Similar to shutil.copymode, you need to pass in the source file and the destination file path strings as arguments for shutil.copystat. The function copies the file metadata and permission bits of the source file to the destination file, including the file creation/modification date, access time, and inode information.

Here’s a code snippet demonstrating how to use the shutil.copystat function:

“`python

import shutil

shutil.copystat(‘/path/to/source/file’, ‘/path/to/destination/file’)

“`

Miscellaneous Functions of shutil Module

Along with the file and directory manipulation functions mentioned previously, the shutil module also provides some additional miscellaneous functions to perform various tasks. Here are two such functions:

1.

Getting Disk Usage Statistics with shutil.disk_usage

The shutil.disk_usage function is used to retrieve the disk usage statistics of a given file system path. This function returns a tuple containing the total, used, and free space of the file system in bytes.

To use the shutil.disk_usage function, you need to pass in the path of the file system as the argument to the function. Here’s a code snippet demonstrating how to use the shutil.disk_usage function:

“`python

import shutil

total, used, free = shutil.disk_usage(‘/’)

print(“Total: {} bytes”.format(total))

print(“Used : {} bytes”.format(used))

print(“Free : {} bytes”.format(free))

“`

2. Getting the Path to an Executable Application with shutil.which()

The shutil.which function is used to search the system’s PATH environment variable to locate an executable application’s full path.

This is similar to the which command in Unix-like operating systems. To use the shutil.which function, you need to pass in the name of the executable application as the argument to the function.

The function returns the full path of the executable if it’s found, and None if it’s not found. Here’s a code snippet demonstrating how to use the shutil.which function:

“`python

import shutil

path = shutil.which(‘python’)

print(“Path to python executable: {}”.format(path))

“`

Conclusion

In this article, we discussed how to copy file permission bits and metadata using the shutil module’s copymode and copystat functions. We also covered two lesser-known functions of the shutil module – disk_usage and which – that can be helpful in performing specific tasks such as finding the path to an executable application.

With these functions, you now have a more comprehensive understanding of the different file and directory manipulation operations you can perform using the shutil module in Python. In this article, we explored the different functions provided by the shutil module in Python that give you a variety of ways to manipulate files and directories.

We discussed how to copy files and directories using functions such as copyfileobj, copy, copy2, copyfile, move, and copytree. Additionally, we discussed how to preserve file permissions and metadata using the copymode and copystat functions.

Lastly, we elaborated on two lesser-known functions of the shutil module – disk_usage and which – that provide you with disk space usage information and the path to a specific executable application. Understanding these diverse functions of the shutil module provides you with many tools to efficiently handle file and directory manipulation and gives you greater control over your system.

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