ls output

David Henderson dhenderson at
Thu May 12 14:26:54 UTC 2011

Gang, I'm working with the 'ls' command and noticed some inconsistencies 
among the 'ls --help' and the generated output.  I have a directory tree 
that contains some hidden files so I modify the 'ls' commands to 
show/hide them, however, the commands don't appear to be working 
correctly.  Here's the output of 'ls --help':

BusyBox v1.18.1 (2011-01-07 13:20:13 EST) multi-call binary.

Usage: ls [-1AacCdeFilnpLRrSsTtuvwxXhk] [FILE]...

List directory contents

         -1      List in a single column
         -A      Don't list . and ..
         -a      Don't hide entries starting with .
         -C      List by columns
         -c      With -l: sort by ctime
         --color[={always,never,auto}]   Control coloring
         -d      List directory entries instead of contents
         -e      List full date and time
         -F      Append indicator (one of */=@|) to entries
         -i      List inode numbers
         -l      Long listing format
         -n      List numeric UIDs and GIDs instead of names
         -p      Append indicator (one of /=@|) to entries
         -L      List entries pointed to by symlinks
         -R      Recurse
         -r      Sort in reverse order
         -S      Sort by file size
         -s      List the size of each file, in blocks
         -T N    Assume tabstop every N columns
         -t      With -l: sort by modification time
         -u      With -l: sort by access time
         -v      Sort by version
         -w N    Assume the terminal is N columns wide
         -x      List by lines
         -X      Sort by extension
         -h      List sizes in human readable format (1K 243M 2G)

To show all of the files in a single column without showing the . and .. 
directories, I would use 'ls -AR1', however the . and .. directories are 
still showing up in the listing.  Another problem I see when using this 
combination is that hidden files are shown too.  It appears as though 
'-A' also shows hidden files, but that defeats the purpose of the '-a' 
command.  Bug perhaps?  I was also wondering if the "--hide" command 
would ever be introduced as it would add additional listing capabilities 
without much additional code (at least I wouldn't think).


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