I have a Cpanel login of remote system into which I have uploaded a number of folders and files scattered throughout the structure.

But I remember that I did this a few minutes ago, roughly x minutes ago.

Now using ssh and logging into remote terminal of the system (to which I have uploaded files to) how can I find out which files were uploaded x minutes ago and remove them safely without altering any older files and directories ?

Any suggestions ?

3 Answers 3


find /path/to/directory -type f -cmin -20

This will display all files created less than 20 minutes ago. If the list looks good, add -delete to the end to permanently erase these files.

Additionally, if you want to see files that were modified X minutes ago (eg if you overwrote some files), you can change -cmin to -mmin.

  • with -delete if it says Directory not empty then any other parameter to overcome this ?
    – Vicky Dev
    Nov 3, 2016 at 10:21
  • This probably means that the directory wasn't emptied by the find, so there is some file in the folder that didn't match the -cmin requirement. Please try again with the -type f parameter I forgot to add on; this might leave you with some empty directories, but should satisfy deleting the files at least.
    – Iskar
    Nov 3, 2016 at 10:30
  • or use -depth...
    – Jeff Schaller
    Nov 3, 2016 at 11:02

First run this command and verify the files:

find /path/to/directory -type f -cmin -20

Once the files are displayed correctly, then use the following command to find & delete.

IMPORTANT: Give a correct path to the following command, giving wrong path, can screw your system.

find /path/to/directory -type f -cmin -20 -exec rm -rfv {} \;   ##without confirmation 

find /path/to/directory -type f -cmin -20 -exec rm -riv {} \; ##with confirmation .
  • please format your code for better readability of your answer.
    – Vicky Dev
    Nov 3, 2016 at 11:41
find /path/to/directory -type f -mmin +20 -exec rm -rfv {} \;

This will delete files in /path/to/director and under that, last modified 20+ minutes ago.

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