How to print all files within a directory using Python?
In this article, we will learn “How to print all files within a directory using Python?”. To do this task we are using the os module in Python. So, let’s discuss some concepts related to that.
The os module is one of the most popular Python modules for automating the systems calls and operations of an operating system. With a rich set of methods and an easy-to-use API, the os module is one of the standard packages and comes pre-installed with Python.
For this article, the following methods from the os module will be required:
1. os.startfile(): This method prints the contents of a given file.
Syntax: os.startfile(path, operation=’open’)
- path – String containing the path to a given file
- operation – A string containing one of the following ‘command verbs’
- ‘print’ – Prints the file pertaining to path
- ‘edit’ – Opens the file in the default text-editor for editing
- ‘properties’ – Opens the properties window of the given file
- ‘find’ – Initiates a search starting from directory mentioned in the path
- ‘open’ – Opens the application/file pertaining to the path. If the given file is not an executable file, its associated application is opened
2. os.listdir(): This method lists all the files and directories within a given directory. For more detailed coverage of this method consisting of examples and use-cases, please refer here.
- path – String containing the path of the directory containing the files to be printed
Returns: A list containing the names of all the sub -directories and files present in the corresponding directory.
3. os.path.isfile(): As we can only print the given folder’s subdirectories, we’ll use this method to check if a given entity is either a file or a directory. For more detailed coverage of this method consisting of examples and use cases, please refer here.
- path – String containing the path of the entity being checked
Returns: True if path corresponds to a file, else returns False
Note: Aside from the above modules, you’ll also need a fully functional printer connected to your PC!
The line of code “time.sleep(5)” of the given script is completely optional and is just there to avoid any un-necessary glitching or overlapping of the operations in consecutive files. For reading more about the time.sleep() method, please refer to here.
The demo was done on a Windows 10 machine. The environment is as follows:
- Path of the directory containing files being printed: “Local Disk (D):/Files”
- Files in the given directory:
- Dir – A sample subdirectory
- File_a.pdf – A sample .pdf file
- File_b.txt – A sample .txt file
- File_c.docx – A sample .docx file
Note: Since os.startfile() is only available in Windows operating system, so macOS and Linux users might experience some issues while running the script given in the article.