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lpath - Path utils for Lua

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lpath is a lfs-like Lua module to handle path, file system and file informations.

This module is inspired by Python's os.path module. It split into 3 parts:, path.fs and path itself. has several constants about current system:

  • platform:
    • "windows"
    • "linux"
    • "macosx"
    • "android"
    • "posix"
  • sep: separator of directory on current system. It's "\\" on Windows, "/" otherwise.
  • altsep: the alternative directory separator, always "/".
  • curdir: the current directory, usually ".".
  • pardir: the parent directory, usually "..".
  • devnull: the null device file, "nul" on Windows, "dev/null" otherwise
  • extsep: extension separator, usually ".".
  • pathsep: the separator for $PATH, ";" on Windows, otherwise ":".

path.fs has functions that implemented by lfs, such as folder listing, folder tree walker, etc.

path has functions that maintains the Python os.path module. Such as normalize path, split path into directory and filename (path.split()), basename and extension name (path.splitext()) or drive volume and paths (path.splitdrive()).

All functions expect iterators return 2 values on error: a nil, and a error message. Error message is encoded by ANSI code page by default.

using path.utf8() and path.ansi() change the default code page used by module. and beside the default code page, if you wanna UTF-8 string, call path.utf8() on ANSI string; if you wanna ANSI string, call path.ansi() on UTF-8 string.

Some of functions accepts only one type of argument: [comp]. [comp] is a list of strings, can be empty. If [comp] is empty, the argument passed to function is "./", i.e. current directory. Otherwise these function will call path.join() on the list of strings, and pass the result of path.join() to functions.

Functions that accept [comp]:

  • path.abs()
  • path.isabs()
  • path.itercomp()
  • path.join()
  • path.fs.chdir()
  • path.fs.dir()
  • path.fs.exists()
  • path.fs.expandvars()
  • path.fs.fsize()
  • path.fs.ftime()
  • path.fs.makedirs()
  • path.fs.mkdir()
  • path.fs.realpath()
  • path.fs.remove()
  • path.fs.removedirs()
  • path.fs.rmdir()
  • path.fs.type()
  • path.fs.walk()


  • path.fs.platform() -> string

return a system name from uname() if use POSIX systems. return "Windows m.n Build bbbb" on Windows systems, m is the major version, n is the minor version, and bbbb is the build number.

  • path.fs.binpath() -> string

get the file path of current execuable file.

  • path.fs.getcwd() -> string

get the current working directory.

  • path.fs.realpath([comp]) -> string

return the real path after all symbolic link resolved. On Windows, on systems before Vista this function is same as path.abs(), but after Vista it also resolved the NTFS symbolic link.

  • path.fs.chdir([comp]) -> string

change current working directory to [comp].

  • path.fs.mkdir(path, mode) -> string

create directory for path, mode is ignored on Windows.

  • path.fs.makedirs([comp]) -> string

create directory for [comp], automatic create mediately folders.

  • path.fs.rmdir([comp]) -> string

remove directory, directory should empty.

  • path.fs.removedirs([comp]) -> string

remove directory and files in directory.

  • path.fs.dir([comp]) -> iterator

return a iterator to list all files/folders in directory [comp]. Iterator will return name, type, size, [CMA] file times in for:

for fname, type, size, ctime, mtime, atime in path.fs.dir(".") do
   -- ...

Sometimes you only want name or type or size, just ignore remain return values:

for fname, type in path.fs.dir(".") do
   print(fname, "is a", type)
  • path.fs.walk([comp]) -> iterator

same as path.fs.dir(), but iterator a folder tree, recursively. notice that a directory will occurs in loop, one have type "in", and one have type "out", call walk() on a path:

+ a
  | b
  | c

will result:

"a/", "in"
"a/b", "file"
"a/c", "file"
"a/", "out"
  • path.fs.type([comp]) -> string

get the file type (file, dir or link) of file.

  • path.fs.exists([comp]) -> boolean

judge a path real have a file

  • path.fs.ftime([comp]) -> ctime, mtime, atime

return the create time, modify time and access time of file.

  • path.cmpftime(file1, file2, use_atime)

return a integer, 0 for equal, 1 for file1 is newer than file2, -1 for file1 is older than file2. if use_atime is true, the compare use access time, otherwise only use create time and modify time only.

  • path.fs.fsize([comp]) -> number

return the size of file.

  • path.fs.touch(path[, mtime[, atime]]) -> path

if path is not exists, create a empty file at path, otherwise update file's time to current. If given atime or mtime, update file's time to these values.

  • path.fs.copy(f1, f2[, fail_if_exists]) -> true

copy f1 to f2. If fail_if_exists is true and f2 exists, this function fails.

  • path.fs.rename(f1, f2)

rename/move f1 to f2, if f2 exists, this function fails.

  • path.fs.remove([comp]) -> string

remove file.

  • path.fs.getenv(name)

get value of a environment variable.

  • path.fs.setenv(name, value)

set a environment variable.

  • path.fs.expandvars([comp]) -> string

expandvars environment variables in string.

  • path.fs.glob(pattern[, dir[, table[, limit]]]) -> table

glob with pattern in dir, using table if passed. e.g. fs.glob "*.txt" return a table contains all txt file in current directory. use limit control the recursive level, pass 1 for only one level of directory, and pass negative number (-1) to traver all sub directory in dir.

  • path.fs.fnmatch(path, pattern) -> boolean

the fnmatch algorithm used by path.fs.glob(), return a boolean value for whether the path matches the pattern.

  • path.ansi(string) -> string
  • path.utf8(string) -> string

these functions convert string between ANSI code pages and UTF-8 on Windows. On other System (especially POSIX systems) these functions does nothing.

  • path.type([comp]) -> string

get the type of file, return "file", "dir" or "link".

  • path.isabs(string) -> boolean

return whether the string is a absolute path.

  • path.abs([comp]) -> string

return the absolute path for [comp]. Same as Python's os.path.abspath()

  • path.rel(filepath, path) -> string

return relative path for filepath based on path. Same as Python's os.path.relpath()

  • path.itercomp([comp]) -> iterator

return a iterator that iterate the component of path. e.g.

for comp in path.itercomp("a/b/c/d") do
-- print:
-- a
-- b
-- c
-- d
  • path([comp]) -> string
  • path.join([comp]) -> string

join all arguments with path sep ("\\" on Windows, "/" otherwise). these routines will normalize the path, e.g. "a/../b" become "b"

  • path.split([comp]) -> dirname, basename

split file path into directory name and base name.

  • path.splitdrive([comp]) -> drive/UNC, path

split file path into UNC part/drive volume and base name. e.g. D:\foo\bar into D: and \foo\bar, \server\mountpoint\foo\bar into \server\mountpoint and \foo\bar

  • path.splitext([comp]) -> base-with-dirname, ext

split file path into base name and extension name. e.g. \foo\bar\baz.exe into \foo\bar\baz and .exe.


Same as Lua's License.


See here:

To do

Complete test suite


a OS specified path manipulation module for Lua



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