flistxattr - Linux


flistxattr is a command-line tool used to list extended attributes associated with a file or directory in Linux. Extended attributes are user-defined metadata attached to a file beyond its basic properties like file size, permissions, and timestamps. They provide a way to store additional information about files.


flistxattr [-v] [-f] [-r] [-l] [--recursive] [-h|--help] [-V|--version] [path]...


  • -v, –verbose: Display additional information about extended attributes, including their size and value.
  • -f, –follow: Follow symbolic links and list extended attributes from the target file or directory.
  • -r, –recursive: Recursively list extended attributes from the specified directory and all its subdirectories.
  • -l, –long: Display extended attributes in a long format, showing additional information such as their size and value in human-readable form.
  • –recursive: Same as -r.
  • -h, –help: Display help information.
  • -V, –version: Display version information.


List extended attributes for a single file:

flistxattr file.txt

Follow symbolic links and list extended attributes:

flistxattr -f link

Recursively list extended attributes for a directory:

flistxattr -r dir

Display extended attributes in long format:

flistxattr -l file.txt

Common Issues

  • Errors with non-existent files: If you try to list extended attributes for a non-existent file or directory, flistxattr will return an error.
  • Permission denied: You must have read permissions to list extended attributes. If you don’t have sufficient permissions, flistxattr will report an error.


flistxattr can be used with other commands to manipulate and view extended attributes:

  • setfattr: Set a new extended attribute.
  • getfattr: Retrieve the value of a specific extended attribute.
  • delfattr: Delete an extended attribute.
  • find: Search files with specific extended attributes.

Related Commands