11. mv (Move)

Used for moving files and also renaming them. Quite similar to the cp command in terms of flags and functionality.

You can rename files like this:

$ mv oldfile newfile

Or you can actually move a file to a different directory:

$ mv file2 /home/pete/Documents

And move more than one file:

$ mv file_1 file_2 /somedirectory

You can rename directories as well:

$ mv directory1 directory2

Like cp, if you mv a file or directory it will overwrite anything in the same directory. So you can use the -i flag to prompt you before overwriting anything.

mv -i directory1 directory2

Let’s say you did want to mv a file to overwrite the previous one. You can also make a backup of that file and it will just rename the old version with a ~.

$ mv -b directory1 directory2


Rename a file, then move that file to a different directory.


How do you rename a file called cat to dog?