Recognizing the Arrival of a New File

Christos TZOTZIOY Georgiou tzot at
Tue Mar 8 16:10:42 CET 2005

On Tue, 08 Mar 2005 08:43:04 -0600, rumours say that Greg Lindstrom
<greg.lindstrom at> might have written:

>I am writing an application where I need to recognize when a file 
>arrives in a given directory.  Files may arrive at any time during the 
>course of the day.  Do I set up a cron job to poll the directory every 
>few minutes?  Write a daemon to monitor the directory?  Or is there some 
>other more common/accepted way to perform this task?  I'm using Python 
>2.3 on Linux.

The most common way to watch for a file or a directory change (in my experience)
is to use the SGI fam (file alteration monitor); I think it has been ported to
Linux.  Otherwise, either way you describe is common use.  Suggestion: first
check for changes in the st_mtime of the directory, then search for the file
TZOTZIOY, I speak England very best.
"Be strict when sending and tolerant when receiving." (from RFC1958)
I really should keep that in mind when talking with people, actually...

More information about the Python-list mailing list