exa A Modern Version of ls

What is exa?

exa is a replacement for ls written in Rust, with more features and better defaults. It uses colors to distinguish file types and metadata. It knows about symlinks, extended attributes, and Git. And it’s small, fast, and just one single binary.

By deliberately making some decisions differently, exa attempts to be a more feature rich, more user-friendly version of ls.



exa’s options are almost, but not quite, entirely unlike ls's.

Display Options

-1, oneline: display one entry per line
-G, grid: display entries as a grid (default)
-l, long: display extended details and attributes
-R, recurse: recurse into directories
-T, tree: recurse into directories as a tree
-x, across: sort the grid across, rather than downwards
--colo[u]r: when to use terminal colors
--colo[u]r-scale: highlight levels of file sizes distinctly

Filtering Options

-a, all: show hidden and 'dot' files
-d, list-dirs: list directories like regular files
-L, level=(depth): limit the depth of recursion
-r, reverse: reverse the sort order
-s, sort=(field): which field to sort by
--group-directories-first: list directories before other files
-D, only-dirs: list only directories
--git-ignore: ignore files mentioned in .gitignore
-I, ignore-glob=(globs): glob patterns (pipe-separated) of files to ignore

Pass the --all option twice to also show the . and .. directories.

Long View Options

These options are available when running with --long (-l):

-b, binary: list file sizes with binary prefixes
-B, bytes: list file sizes in bytes, without any prefixes
-g, group: list each file's group
-h, header: add a header row to each column
-H, links: list each file's number of hard links
-i, inode: list each file's inode number
-m, modified: use the modified timestamp field
-S, blocks: list each file's number of file system blocks
-t, time=(field): which timestamp field to use
-u, accessed: use the accessed timestamp field
-U, created: use the created timestamp field
-@, extended: list each file's extended attributes and sizes
--git: list each file's Git status, if tracked or ignored
--time-style: how to format timestamps



If you're using homebrew, you can install exa by running:

brew install exa


brew install exa --without-git

Cargo Install

If you’re using a recent version of Cargo (0.5.0 or higher):

cargo install exa


cargo install --no-default-features exa

Cargo will build the exa binary and place it in $HOME/.cargo (this location can be overridden by setting the --root option).


exa is also installable using the nix package manager by running:

nix-env -i exa

More Information

Please visit exa's git project page for more information on exa.

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