Simple and expressive file management in Swift
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Latest commit ea3451a Sep 25, 2018

Platform Language: Swift CocoaPods Carthage
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FileKit is a Swift framework that allows for simple and expressive file management.

Development happens in the develop branch.



  • OS X 10.9+ / iOS 8.0+ / watchOS 2.0 / tvOS 9.0

  • Xcode 7.1+, Swift 2.1+

Install Using CocoaPods

CocoaPods is a centralized dependency manager for Objective-C and Swift. Go here to learn more.

  1. Add the project to your Podfile.

    pod 'FileKit', '~> 5.0.0'
  2. Run pod install and open the .xcworkspace file to launch Xcode.

  3. Import the FileKit framework.

    import FileKit

Install Using Carthage

Carthage is a decentralized dependency manager for Objective-C and Swift.

  1. Add the project to your Cartfile.

    github "nvzqz/FileKit"
  2. Run carthage update and follow the additional steps in order to add FileKit to your project.

  3. Import the FileKit framework.

    import FileKit



Paths are handled with the Path structure.

let home = Path("~")
let drive: Path = "/Volumes/Macintosh HD"
let file:  Path = "~/Desktop/file\(1)"


New Files

A blank file can be written by calling createFile() on an Path.

try Path(".gitignore").createFile()
New Directories

A directory can be created by calling createDirectory() on an Path.

try Path("~/Files").createDirectory()
try Path("~/Books").createDirectory(withIntermediateDirectories: false)

Intermediate directories are created by default.

New Symlinks

A symbolic link can be created by calling createSymlinkToPath(_:) on an Path.

try Path("path/to/").symlinkFile(to: "~/Applications")
print(Path("~/Applications/").exists)  // true
Finding Paths

You can find all paths with the ".txt" extension five folders deep into the Desktop with:

let textFiles = Path.userDesktop.find(searchDepth: 5) { path in
    path.pathExtension == "txt"

A negative searchDepth will make it run until every path in self is checked against.

You can even map a function to paths found and get the non-nil results:

let documents = Path.userDocuments.find(searchDepth: 1) { path in
Iterating Through Paths

Because Path conforms to SequenceType, it can be iterated through with a for loop.

for download in Path.userDownloads {
    print("Downloaded file: \(download)")
Current Working Directory

The current working directory for the process can be changed with Path.Current.

To quickly change the current working directory to a path and back, there's the changeDirectory(_:) method:

Path.userDesktop.changeDirectory {
    print(Path.current)  // "/Users/nvzqz/Desktop"
Common Ancestor

A common ancestor between two paths can be obtained:

print(Path.root.commonAncestor(.userHome))       // "/"
print("~/Desktop"  <^> "~/Downloads")            // "~"
print(.UserLibrary <^> .UserApplicationSupport)  // "/Users/nvzqz/Library"
+ Operator

Appends two paths and returns the result

// ~/Documents/My Essay.docx
let essay = Path.userDocuments + "My Essay.docx"

It can also be used to concatenate a string and a path, making the string value a Path beforehand.

let numberedFile: Path = "path/to/dir" + String(10)  // "path/to/dir/10"
+= Operator

Appends the right path to the left path. Also works with a String.

var photos = Path.userPictures + "My Photos"  // ~/Pictures/My Photos
photos += "../My Other Photos"                // ~/Pictures/My Photos/../My Other Photos
% Operator

Returns the standardized version of the path.

let path: Path = "~/Desktop"
path% == path.standardized  // true
* Operator

Returns the resolved version of the path.

let path: Path = "~/Documents"
path* == path.resolved  // true
^ Operator

Returns the path's parent path.

let path: Path = "~/Movies"
path^ == "~"  // true
->> Operator

Moves the file at the left path to the right path.

Path counterpart: moveFile(to:)

File counterpart: move(to:)

->! Operator

Forcibly moves the file at the left path to the right path by deleting anything at the left path before moving the file.

+>> Operator

Copies the file at the left path to the right path.

Path counterpart: copyFile(to:)

File counterpart: copy(to:)

+>! Operator

Forcibly copies the file at the left path to the right path by deleting anything at the left path before copying the file.

=>> Operator

Creates a symlink of the left path at the right path.

Path counterpart: symlinkFile(to:)

File counterpart: symlink(to:)

=>! Operator

Forcibly creates a symlink of the left path at the right path by deleting anything at the left path before creating the symlink.


Subscripting an Path will return all of its components up to and including the index.

let users = Path("/Users/me/Desktop")[1]  // /Users

Standardizes the path.

The same as doing:

somePath = somePath.standardized

Resolves the path's symlinks.

The same as doing:

somePath = somePath.resolved


A file can be made using File with a DataType for its data type.

let plistFile = File<Dictionary>(path: Path.userDesktop + "sample.plist")

Files can be compared by size.


|> Operator

Writes the data on the left to the file on the right.

do {
    try "My name is Bob." |> TextFile(path: Path.userDesktop + "name.txt")
} catch {
    print("I can't write to a desktop file?!")


The TextFile class allows for reading and writing strings to a file.

Although it is a subclass of File<String>, TextFile offers some functionality that File<String> doesn't.

|>> Operator

Appends the string on the left to the TextFile on the right.

let readme = TextFile(path: "README.txt")
try "My Awesome Project" |> readme
try "This is an awesome project." |>> readme


A typealias to File<NSDictionary>.


A typealias to File<NSArray>


A typealias to File<NSData>


The DataFile class allows for reading and writing Data to a file.

Although it is a subclass of File<Data>, DataFile offers some functionality that File<Data> doesn't. You could specify Data.ReadingOptions and Data.WritingOptions


You can use any Codable object with File.

extension AnyCodableClass: JSONReadableWritable {} // if you want json encoding/decoding

let codableFile = File<AnyCodableClass>(path: path)
try codableFile.write(toEncode)
let decoded: AnyCodableClass = try

Alternatively you can use utility methods

try FileKit.write(toEncode, to: path)
let decoded: AnyCodableClass = try path)

File Permissions

The FilePermissions struct allows for seeing the permissions of the current process for a given file.

let swift: Path = "/usr/bin/swift"
print(swift.filePermissions)  // FilePermissions[read, execute]

Data Types

All types that conform to DataType can be used to satisfy the generic type for File.

Readable Protocol

A Readable type must implement the static method read(from: Path).

All Readable types can be initialized with init(contentsOfPath:).

Writable Protocol

A Writable type must implement write(to: Path, atomically: Bool).

Writing done by write(to: Path) is done atomically by default.


Types that have a write(toFile:atomically:) method that takes in a String for the file path can conform to Writable by simply conforming to WritableToFile.


If a type itself cannot be written to a file but can output a writable type, then it can conform to WritableConvertible and become a Writable that way.


The type for all errors thrown by FileKit operations is FileKitError.

Errors can be converted to String directly for any logging. If only the error message is needed, FileKitError has a message property that states why the error occurred.

// FileKitError(Could not copy file from "path/to/file" to "path/to/destination")
String(FileKitError.copyFileFail(from: "path/to/file", to: "path/to/destination"))


FileKit and its assets are released under the MIT License. Assets can be found in the assets branch.