The file system groups files into directories. A directory listing is a list of all the files in a directory. Emacs provides commands to create and delete directories, and to make directory listings in brief format (file names only) and verbose format (sizes, dates, and other attributes included). Emacs also includes a directory browser feature called Dired, which you can invoke with C-x d; see Dired.
dirname. If it isn’t empty, you will be asked whether you want to delete it recursively.
The command to display a directory listing is C-x C-d
list-directory). It reads using the minibuffer a file name
which is either a directory to be listed or a wildcard-containing
pattern for the files to be listed. For example,
C-x C-d /u2/emacs/etc RET
lists all the files in directory
/u2/emacs/etc. Here is an
example of specifying a file name pattern:
C-x C-d /u2/emacs/src/*.c RET
Normally, C-x C-d displays a brief directory listing containing
just file names. A numeric argument (regardless of value) tells it to
make a verbose listing including sizes, dates, and owners (like
The text of a directory listing is mostly obtained by running
ls in an inferior process. Two Emacs variables control the
switches passed to
a string giving the switches to use in brief listings (
list-directory-verbose-switches is a string
giving the switches to use in a verbose listing (
In verbose directory listings, Emacs adds information about the amount of free space on the disk that contains the directory.
The command M-x delete-directory prompts for a directory’s name
using the minibuffer, and deletes the directory if it is empty. If
the directory is not empty, you will be asked whether you want to
delete it recursively. On systems that have a “Trash” (or “Recycle
Bin”) feature, you can make this command move the specified directory
to the Trash instead of deleting it outright, by changing the variable
t. See Misc File Ops,
for more information about using the Trash.