ls.exe shows windows system hidden files
Mon Dec 2 13:50:00 GMT 2002


Try to remember that cygwin is a unix emulation layer for windows that
tries to emulate unix in as many respects as possible. To change the ls
source to accomadate for something windows uses to hide files, sometimes
unknown from its users, would not be unix like.

But saying that if your requirement is to have such an ls facility, that
you must have, you could of course edit the source files to add your
`windows' style hiding of files. As you mentioned it is used from php so
why not check whether or not skip files in your script.


Original Message:
From: Wendell Pinegar
Date: Mon, 2 Dec 2002 15:09:02 -0600 
Subject: RE: ls.exe shows windows system hidden files

>In our instance the reason this an issue is that we call the ls.exe utility
>from PHP web code and have found that Windows XP is creating system hidden
>files in some of our subdirectories (usually the XP auto-created thumbnail
>databases).  We have also found other ls.exe implementations that do
>properly ignore hidden files.  The MKS Toolkit for instance does properly
>ignore these file types.

FYI the MKS toolkit is designed for windows and not a posix system, And
thus will support these windows features. In order to do this in cygwin
changes would have to be made to stat to detect these files.

>It just seems odd that ls.exe shows files that would not be listed with
>standard command line "dir".

The dir command is built-into windows shells. Again follows the hiding

>I agree that the proper way to implement this in cygwin would be to hide
>system hidden files by default and have a switch to allow ls.exe to show
>these files if requested (like "ls --show-hidden-files" and "ls

-----Original Message-----
From: Max Bowsher [] 
Sent: Monday, December 02, 2002 11:29 AM
To: Wendell Pinegar;
Subject: Re: ls.exe shows windows system hidden files

Wendell Pinegar <> wrote:

> There seems to be a long running defect in the implementation of
> ls.exe.  It shows windows system hidden files - which it shouldn't do
> by default.  On Unix systems files are hidden by placing a period in
> front of the filename (ie, .profile), but in the windows world files
> are not routinely hidden this way but are more commonly hidden by
> setting the hidden attribute on the file.
> Shouldn't ls.exe honor the file system attribute and not show the
> hidden windows files?

It it really a big deal? Worth patching fileutils to make special allowance

There is no unixy analogue, so Cygwin can't help here.

Personally, I don't see the point of patching fileutils to do this - but
that's just an opinion.


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