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getfattr - Man Page

get extended attributes of filesystem objects


getfattr [-hRLP] -n name [-e en]  pathname...
getfattr [-hRLP] -d [-e en]  [-m pattern] pathname...


For each file, getfattr displays the file name, and the set of extended attribute names (and optionally values) which are associated with that file. Per default only attributes in the user namespace are displayed, see -m.

The output format of getfattr -d is as follows:

 1:  # file: somedir/
 2:  user.name0="value0"
 3:  user.name1="value1"
 4:  user.name2="value2"
 5:  ...

Line 1 identifies the file name for which the following lines are being reported. The remaining lines (lines 2 to 4 above) show the name and value pairs associated with the specified file.


-n name, --name=name

Dump the value of the named extended attribute.

-d,  --dump

Dump the values of all matched extended attributes.

-e en, --encoding=en

Encode values after retrieving them. Valid values of en are "text", "hex", and "base64". Values encoded as text strings are enclosed in double quotes ("), while strings encoded as hexadecimal and base64 are prefixed with 0x and 0s, respectively.

-h,  --no-dereference

Do not dereference symlinks. Instead of the file a symlink refers to, the symlink itself is examined.  Unless doing a logical (-L) traversal, do not traverse symlinks to directories.

-m pattern, --match=pattern

Only include attributes with names matching the regular expression pattern. The default value for pattern is "^user\\.",  which includes all the attributes in the user namespace. Specify "-" for including all attributes.  Refer to xattr(7) for a more detailed discussion of namespaces.


Do not strip leading slash characters ('/'). The default behaviour is to strip leading slash characters.


Dump out the raw extended attribute value(s) without encoding them.

-R,  --recursive

List the attributes of all files and directories recursively.

-L,  --logical

Logical walk, follow symbolic links to directories. The default behaviour is to follow symbolic link arguments unless --no-dereference is given, and to skip symbolic links encountered in subdirectories. Only effective in combination with -R.

-P,  --physical

Physical walk, do not follow symbolic links to directories. This also skips symbolic link arguments. Only effective in combination with -R.


Print the version of getfattr and exit.


Print help explaining the command line options.


End of command line options. All remaining parameters are interpreted as file names, even if they start with a dash character.


Andreas Gruenbacher, <andreas.gruenbacher@gmail.com> and the SGI XFS development team, <linux-xfs@oss.sgi.com>.

Please send your bug reports or comments to <https://savannah.nongnu.org/bugs/?group=attr> or <acl-devel@nongnu.org>.

See Also

setfattr(1), xattr(7)

Referenced By

apple_dump(1), attr(1), getxattr(2), listxattr(2), ntfs-3g(8), ntfssecaudit(8), ntfsusermap(8), ocfs2(7), removexattr(2), selinux_restorecon(3), setfattr(1), setxattr(2), smb.conf(5), systemd-coredump(8), tmpfiles.d(5), wimmount(1), xattr(7), xorriso(1), xorrisofs(1).

Extended Attributes Dec 2001 File Utilities