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I wish to have the command locate in ubuntu 12.04 (which is used for finding files. I believe there is such a command but I cannot see it in ubuntu 12.04 Is it part of any package?

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  • Try using this command: sudo apt-get install locate. Nov 10 '12 at 20:24
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    For the future: if you're looking for a program and don't know the package, install apt-file: sudo apt-get install apt-file and search for the program using apt-file: apt-file search /usr/bin/locate.
    – hnasarat
    Nov 10 '12 at 20:57
  • In a standard Ubuntu install this often isn't needed - if you type a command on the command-line that Ubuntu doesn't know, it'll often suggest which package to install to get that command. Come to mention it, I think locate is already installed in a standard Ubuntu install anyway, so maybe this doesn't help. May 28 '13 at 3:15
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sudo apt-get install mlocate should install the 'locate' command.


mlocate maintains a database of all your files and is re-indexed once a day by default. If you want it to re-index immediately then run sudo updatedb from the command line.

If you get a cannot stat error when you run locate, then you need to run sudo updatedb to populate the database, just as if you wanted to re-index immediately.

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    I believe that the mlocate package installs a mlocate job in /etc/cron.daily which runs updatedb daily.
    – mfisch
    Nov 11 '12 at 2:20
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    Just after you do that, if you try to call locate, you will get the following error: "locate: can not stat () `/var/lib/mlocate/mlocate.db': No such file or directory". To solve that, please refer to @enxotib response in: unix.stackexchange.com/questions/26188/… May 12 '14 at 4:02
  • You probably want to run sudo updatedb after installing mlocate, since the search database needs to be optimized for first time use. Apr 10 '16 at 20:48
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    If you're on CentOS/RHEL/Amazon Linux, use sudo yum install mlocate to install it. Also the same, run sudo updatedb to initialize the database for the first time.
    – ADTC
    May 6 '18 at 0:42

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