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exa a replacement ls

published 27/10/2021 in Linux | tags : Linux, ls, exa, #100DaysToOffload

Estimated read time: 1 min.

exa is a modern replacement for ls.

Whats modern mean in the context of ls? For instance exa has colors on by default, can show git status, xattrs of files etc.

More information can be found:

It really is a simple application that does what it says quite well.

Below are the bash alias’s that I created for using it on my machines. It’s not only ‘pretty’ but also useful in that you can show the git status of files in your directory listing etc. Checkout their documentation to tailor it’s output to your specifications.

I wasn’t ready to drop ls entirely, so I created some alias’s below that you can use to check out exa without having to replace ls entirely.

I suspect that after a couple weeks of using the below alias’s I’ll just replace ls as I haven’t really found any downsides yet.


$ sudo pacman -S exa
# or on debian
$ sudo apt install exa


alias e='exa --icons'
alias el='exa --long --git --header --icons'
alias et='exa --tree --icons'


Sample output from the above alias’s


exa e


exa el


exa et

There you have it, it just basically works as an ls replacement whist providing extra functionality. It’s always nice to find modern console utilities.