Emacs is a excellent tool for file management. For example, listing files, copy/delete files, rename files, moving files, creating/deleting directory. Once you become familiar with it, you almost never go back to shell or the OS desktop for these tasks.
To start viewing directory, type 【Ctrl+x d】, then type the dir you want. (Or, use the graphical menu 〖File ▸ Open Directory…〗.) You can now use arrow keys to move around. To open a file, just move cursor to it and press Enter ↵. To view a subdir, just move cursor to it and press Enter ↵. To close the current dir, type q.
Here's a list of common basic commands:
|Enter ↵||Open the file|
|q||Close the dir|
|+||create a new dir|
|Z||compress/decompress the file by gzip|
Sometimes you want to copy or delete many files. Instead of using the command on one file at a time, you can simply mark the files you want, then apply a command on all marked files. To mark a file, press m. Here's a list of basic marking commands:
|m||mark a file|
|U||unmark all marked|
|% m||mark by pattern (regex)|
For example, if you want to mark all HTML files, type 【* .】, then type
Once you've marked, you can type any of the key for rename, copy, delete, …. When there are marked files, commands applies to the marked files. When no files are marked, commands applies to the file under cursor.
The keyboard shortcut 【Ctrl+x d】 calls the command
dired. “dired” is short for Directory Edit. It is a old term for file management.
Here are other common dired commands:
|g||refresh dir listing|
|^||go to parent dir|
dired is often used in combination with 【Alt+!】 (shell-command). For
example, suppose you downloaded a program and is going thru the
install process of unzip, untar, configure, make, sudo make install. You
can either run these command inside a emacs shell with 【Alt+x shell】, or
you can just execute them one at a time with 【Alt+!】.
For more about working with shell, see: Emacs Shell Tutorial (Bash, cmd.exe, PowerShell).
When you are in dired mode, there are 3 new graphical menus: 〖Operate〗, 〖Mark〗, 〖Regex〗. These menus lists the commands specific to dired. They are very useful as a cheatsheet. So, if you forgot what's the key to press to do something, look up in these menus.
(info "(emacs) Dired")
See: Emacs: Rename Files Interactively by Pattern (regex; wdired).
For more dired tips, see: