Five ways to copy files in Unix

Five ways to copy files in Unix

Satya UNIX Solution , , , ,

Five ways to copy files in Unix : Transfer of data or copying data is indispensable in computer science. There are in-numerous application of this process in today’s world. In this post, I will explain five different ways to copy files in Unix operating system, locally as well as remotely.

Five ways to copy files in Unix


Copy file using cp

cp is Unix command or utility to copy files or directory from source path to destination. Simple command create a copy of a file in current directory.

cp test.txt  test123.txt


Copy a file from source directory to target directory.

cp /tmp/config.txt /prod/conf


This is to copy file to parent directory.

cp /tmp/file.txt ..

Copy a directory(e.g. conf) recursively to home directory.

cp -r /prod/conf /home


Secure copy – scp

Scp is a secure remote copy program for Unix server. Using this we can copy file or directory from remote source to local host or local source to remote host. It copies files over the network using ssh, therefore uses password or passphrase for authentication.

Following  command show secure copy from remote_host to local host

scp remote_host:/src/file.dat  /tmp/

and to copy from local host to remote host use below command.

scp /tmp/hello.dat remote_host:/src/

FTP file transfer

FTP is file transfer protocol based on client server architecture. It is uses secure connection,  secured with SSL/TLS. You can use ftp commands in here document to transfer file.


ftp $HOST <<END
user $USER
put $FILE
exit 0




Its a remote file copying tool, which is fast and versatile. It is versatile as it sync data rather copy entire data from the beginning.Below rsync command recursively copy bar directory from src path of a hostxy server to /data/tmp directory of local host. ‘-a’ specify archive mode that ensure that sym‐bolic links, devices, attributes, permissions, ownership, etc. are preserved in the transfer. ‘-z’ is specify compression mode, that ensure data compression during transfer. And, ‘-v’ is to increase verbosity.

rsync -avz hostxy:src/bar /data/tmp


Connect:Direct or NDM

Connect:Direct or NDM(Network data mover) is file transfer program, which copy file from source server to target.

We can use this in both Mainframe and Mid-range to transfer file. It uses TCP/IP to transfer file and more made file transfer routine and reliable.

Following a step in NDM to tranfer file.


ndmcli -x <<-EOF
  submit maxdelay=unlimited
  pacct=""C:D testTransfer""

  copy from (file = $source_file)
  compress = extended
  to (file = $dest_file
  disp = new)





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