I need to display the permissions details for all the files names in a directory that begin with just "_". I have tried various commands using ls and find and no joy.

  • Do the filenames start with dash or the ls permissions string?
    – Jeff Schaller
    Oct 3, 2018 at 19:10
  • Sorry its an underscore, the file names that start with an underscore
    – Deirdre
    Oct 3, 2018 at 19:17
  • Sorry for the mis-edit, then! You had an underscore in the title, but a dash in the body. Feel free to edit the question to take it in the correct direction. Thank you!
    – Jeff Schaller
    Oct 3, 2018 at 19:17

2 Answers 2



ls -l -- -*

The -- indicates that what follows are not command line options.

Based on your update, for underscores you should just be able to do:

ls -l _*

Though the -- option won't hurt (it just won't do anything in that case)

  • yes i used _ as i noticed the dash. worked perfectly
    – Deirdre
    Oct 3, 2018 at 20:15

"-" is interpreted as a parameter, but you don't need to suffer, just append the path before the file name or just use ./.

touch ./-badfilename1 ./-badfilename2
ls -l ./-* 
ls -l /full/path/for/the/file/-* 
rm ./-badfilename? 

And every command will just work (ls, rm, cat, touch etc!).

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