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Most recent file in a directory - PHP

Want to report the most recently updated file in a directory in PHP? It's the sort of thing we all want to do, but in a variety of modified forms, quite often ... here's a code snippet to do it for you:

$dir = "/home/wellho/public_html/demo";
$pattern = '\.(html|php|php4)$';

$newstamp = 0;
$newname = "";
$dc = opendir($dir);
while ($fn = readdir($dc)) {
  # Eliminate current directory, parent directory
  if (ereg('^\.{1,2}$',$fn)) continue;
  # Eliminate other pages not in pattern
  if (! ereg($pattern,$fn)) continue;
  $timedat = filemtime("$dir/$fn");
  if ($timedat > $newstamp) {
    $newstamp = $timedat;
    $newname = $fn;
  }
}
# $timedat is the time for the latest file
# $newname is the name of the latest file


You'll note that I have provided separate varaibles for the directory to be searched and a regular expression that's to be used for filtering file names - you'll always want to skip over . and .., and you'll normally want to ensure that backup files, hidden data, etc, don't get logged.

The code that uses $newname and $timedat later on needs to take care of the case in which they're null / empty - i.e. if you've looked through a directory that didn't contain anything.

The source code is available here in full, and you can run the script here. Note that the time / date report is the server time / date and not the time / date from the country you happen to be browsing in.
(written 2006-12-18, updated 2006-12-21)

 
Associated topics are indexed as below, or enter http://melksh.am/nnnn for individual articles
H109 - PHP - Input / Output
  [3424] Divide 10000 by 17. Do you get 588.235294117647, 588.24 or 588? - Ruby and PHP - (2011-09-08)
  [3159] Returning multiple values from a function call in various languages - a comparison - (2011-02-06)
  [3029] PHP data sources - other web servers, large data flows, and the client (browser) - (2010-11-04)
  [2964] An introduction to file handling in programs - buffering, standard in and out, and file handles - (2010-09-21)
  [1780] Server overloading - turns out to be feof in PHP - (2008-09-01)
  [1442] Reading a file multiple times - file pointers - (2007-11-23)
  [1113] File and URL reading in PHP - (2007-03-20)
  [1096] Sample script - FTP to get a file from within PHP - (2007-03-01)
  [1094] PHP fread - truncated data - (2007-02-27)
  [709] Handling huge data files in PHP - (2006-05-04)
  [653] Easy feed! - (2006-03-21)
  [616] printf - a flawed but useful function - (2006-02-22)
  [114] Relative or absolute milkman - (2004-11-10)


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This is a page archived from The Horse's Mouth at http://www.wellho.net/horse/ - the diary and writings of Graham Ellis. Every attempt was made to provide current information at the time the page was written, but things do move forward in our business - new software releases, price changes, new techniques. Please check back via our main site for current courses, prices, versions, etc - any mention of a price in "The Horse's Mouth" cannot be taken as an offer to supply at that price.

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