To make the story short, I did an rsync:

rsync -avP [email protected]:/tmp/

And I forgot to put in my source directory...

I really meant to run:

rsync -avP /tmp/ [email protected]:/tmp/

It printed a bunch of files, but I don't know where it copied them because I didn't specify a destination. Does anyone know what happened? I did an ls on the current folder, but I didn't find anything.

  • 2
    I'd assume you'd just de-rez.
    – Jason C
    Mar 14, 2014 at 0:23

1 Answer 1


From man rsync:

   Usages with just one SRC arg and no DEST arg will list the source files
   instead of copying.

this as explanation below the invocation options, for you the invocation matches:

Pull: rsync [OPTION...] [USER@]HOST::SRC... [DEST]
  • That's a relief but why not just print an error Mar 13, 2014 at 19:35
  • 4
    @0A0D actually it is a feature that I have used. You first run without a destination to see what file are going to involved and make sure those are the right ones, and then you reissue the command with the destination appended.
    – Anthon
    Mar 13, 2014 at 19:38
  • @Anthon: Ah, that would make sense. I suppose a -t (for test) would be more verbose to me. Mar 13, 2014 at 19:39
  • 2
    @0A0D Dry run of rsync is invoked with -n/--dry-run.
    – oakad
    Mar 14, 2014 at 0:22
  • 1
    @inemanja: it was more commentary on the -t option than anything else Apr 28, 2019 at 0:15

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