© Copyright Clive E. Chapman 2008. All rights reserved.

FLFIND User Guide

Version 5.00 (2008-07-25)


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FLFIND is a simple way of finding one or more files that have a specified name and extension. The results obtained by FLFIND can be obtained by using FL, and indeed FLFIND invokes FL to do the hard work. But FLFIND provides a more succinct invocation syntax that makes it simpler to find files than using FL directly.

By default, the entire directory tree on the current drive is searched, but this can be restricted to the directory tree starting at a particular directory, or extended to include several or all accessed drives. The name and extension can include wildcard characters.

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FLFIND filespec [filespec2 [...]] [/D] [/F] [/?]

where square brackets [ ] denote optional items. Parameters and options are as follows:


This is the filespec of the file to be found. If the filespec contains blanks, the filespec must be enclosed in double quotes. If the filespec does not contain blanks, the double quotes are optional. At least one filespec must be specified. Each filespec is of the form:


where the various components are as follows:

This specifies the drive(s) to be searched; it must be one of the following:

  • One or more drive letters in upper or lower case, followed by a single colon. All drive letters in the range "A" to "Z" are valid, but the drives specified must be accessible; the command fails if an inaccessible drive is specified.

  • A single asterisk character followed by a colon. This is a shorthand notation that denotes all accessed drives in the range "C:" to "Z:". Note that the drive letters "A:" and "B:" that conventionally refer to diskette drives are not included.

If no drives are specified, FLFIND searches the current drive only.

This specifies the directory where the search is to start. The specified directory plus all of its sub-directories are searched for the specified file.

The path is assumed to be relative to the root directory, even if the path does not begin with a "\" character. This is counter to the usual conventions.

If the path is not specified, the search starts at the root directory.

This is the name and extension of the file to be found. The wildcard characters "*" and "?" are valid in the name and extension. If no dot is present, ".*" is appended, so all files that have the specified name are found. To search for a file that does not have an extension, end the name with a dot.


Options can be specifed using either "/" or "-" as the option prefix character, and can occur before or after the positional parameters. The following options are valid:

This option specifies that FLFIND should search only for directories.

This option specifies that FLFIND should search only for files.

If neither /D nor /F is specified, or both are specified, FLFIND searches for both files and directories.

This option causes FLFIND to display brief help information.

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Usage Notes

  1. Relative directory notation ("." and "..") is ineffective (mostly), and there is little advantage in using it.

  2. Use FF.BAT to invoke FLFIND if you want to exit to a directory different from the start-up directory.

  3. FLFIND invokes FL to do the hard work. FL.EXE must reside in the directory which contains FLFIND.EXE.

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FLFIND *ab*.c
Lists all files with extension "c" and with names containing "ab" on the current drive.

FLFIND efq:*.c
Lists all files with extension "c" on the E, F, and Q drives.

FLFIND *:*.h
Lists all files with extension "h" on accessed drives in the range C to Z.

FLFIND \test\*.h
Lists all files with extension "h" in directory "test" and all it's sub-directories.

FLFIND *.h *.c
Lists all files with extensions "h" and "c" on the current drive.

FLFIND *.* /d
Lists all directories on the current drive.

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