How can I sort the files in my download folder in the order of the date of download?

My OS is Ubuntu 14.10, and I am using Nautilus - Files 3.10.1.

  • 2
    What do you use to view the content of that folder? ls or a graphical file manager like Nautilus? Nov 5, 2014 at 19:18
  • I am using Nautilus - Files 3.10.1
    – dhiya
    Nov 6, 2014 at 3:52

3 Answers 3


I believe Date Modified would pretty much be the same as the date downloaded. View > List > Click on Date Modified

  • it should be, but it is not. I just downloaded a file this morning and it says the date is 2014. However sorting by "accessed date" works. Feb 8, 2017 at 0:11
  • @maxple When I download any file from Firefox or Chromium, ls -l shows that the timestamp on the file was updated at the time of download. This timestamp corresponds to Date Modified in the file browser. However wget preserves the original timestamp. When I download a file with wget Date Accessed does show the download date. So, my answer works if you've just downloaded from the browser. But, if you've downloaded with the browser and a tool like wget to a directory then Date Accessed is the best sort column to show the most recently downloaded files.
    – jbrock
    Feb 8, 2017 at 1:58

If you just want to see the files (not parse the file names), you can use

ls -t

The last file printed is the eldest. To print the newest last, use

ls -tr

From man ls:

   -t     sort by modification time, newest first
   -r, --reverse
          reverse order while sorting

If you want to parse these file names or somehow pass them to another program, you should not use ls since there are various issues associated with parsing its output. Bad handling of spaces in file names is the classic problem. If you need to parse these file names, edit your question and I can provide a solution depending on what exactly you need to do.

  • OP wants to use Nautilus, not ls. Nov 6, 2014 at 12:47
  • 1
    @DavidFoerster so they do. The question did not mention that when I answered.
    – terdon
    Nov 6, 2014 at 13:13

For me the "modified date" was wrong for newly downloaded files. Instead I am using the "accessed date" and it is correct.

  • and how could you do that?
    – Arun Gowda
    Jul 3, 2019 at 10:07

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