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Mac - rsync folders with / in name

Posted on 2016-09-29
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Last Modified: 2016-10-10
Hello, we are trying to rsync several TB of data from some Mac external drives to another system. Several hundred folders have a / in the folder name. So a folder will be called things like
Accounting / Finance

I get that Mac does a translation to : and see whats happening there, but not sure how to deal with rsynch. Here are the types of errors we are getting

rsync: recv_generator: mkdir "/Volumes/Drive/Executive/Accounting : Finance" failed: Invalid argument (22)

That : between accounting and finance is a slash in the file name.

Anyone have any insight on how to get around this or perhaps another way to copy loads of info like this?
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Question by:willp2
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strung earned 500 total points
ID: 41822435
A slash in a file or folder name is legal on the Mac file system, but illegal in Fat and NTFS. So if you are copying to a FAT or NTFS drive, you may have to do a global search and replace, changing the slashes to something else, like underscore, for instance.

There is a Mac utility, "A Better File Rename"   http://www.publicspace.net/ABetterFinderRename/ which can easily bulk rename files and folders.
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by:willp2
ID: 41822659
That sounds about right. Trying out the utility you linked to. Looks like it will take several hours just to go through the data and sort through the names, but it sounds promising.
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by:strung
ID: 41822664
Your other alternative, if it is practical, is to copy the folders to a Mac formatted drive which would not have a restriction on  the slash in the name.
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by:serialband
ID: 41822924
The Slash (/) on unix (including OS X) is a special delimiter that's illegal as part of the file name.  It's only meant to separate folders.  Macs do a very stupid thing and allowed it way back when it wasn't unix based.  However, the command line utilities are still unix based and doesn't really handle that special character.

As someone that uses multiple platforms, I would never use those special characters in any file name.  It is an old legacy allowance that should be removed.

rsync: recv_generator: mkdir "/Volumes/Drive/Executive/Accounting : Finance" failed: Invalid argument (22)
This error suggests that OS X rsync wasn't rewritten for mac.  You might want to just try ditto for the first pass to create the folder structures and follow up afterwards with rsync once the correct folder has been created.

ditto  src  dst_directory
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by:willp2
ID: 41837193
Thanks for the input. We tried A Better File Rename and while promising, it was impossibly slow on these large drives we were working with. Hours and hours just to scan the drive.

Finally ended up using the batch rename function in El Capitan and Sierra. Not perfect and still took a lot more hands on than A Better File Rename would have, but it worked and got us past this issue.
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