Friday, February 22, 2008

Simple SCP Utility For Network Wide File Distribution

Hey again,

This little shell script is a somewhat follow-up to an older post we did on creating an SSH command line runner. It's basically the same concept, except this time we're looking specifically at copying files all over the network, using SCP, rather than executing commands all over the network using SSH (One might argue that, under the covers, they're the same thing. But one might also argue that each has an advantage over the other, depending on what it's being used for and there's no argument that neither takes the exact same command line options :)

One other thing to note, before you begin using this script, is that it assumes that you have passwordless key-based SSH authentication set up on all the hosts you're going to be copying to. If you haven't got that set up already, check out our post on setting up your SSH keys network wide quickly and easily.

This script is fairly simple to run and should work on most flavors of Linux and Unix. If any modification is necessary it should be minor, and center around the line where we actually invoke SCP. It takes two arguments (where we're copying from and where we're copying to) and can be run simply, from the command line, like so:

host # ./scopy /users/bob/file /users/bob/file

Of course, you may note that the above example is incredibly specific. You don't need to include the directory if you don't want to (I just usually do so to be sure things end up where they're supposed to). You could easily do this, as well (assuming that your home directory isn't in the same location on every box on your network):

host # ./scopy /users/bob/file ~/bob/file

or any number of variations. Have fun with it :) The only thing it looks for outside of itself, is a host file, which I've cleverly named "hostfile" ;) This is completely arbitrary and can be changed, as well. The format I've chosen is "name : IP Address," like this:

host1 :

with one entry per line. Again, with some simple modification, this can be changed easily to suit your taste.

Hope you enjoy it and it helps you out some :)


Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a
Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License


# scopy - scp files from one location to
# all of your network hosts
# 2008 - Mike Golvach -
# Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License

trap 'rm tmpfile.$pid;echo "Caught Signal. Cleaning Up And Quitting...";exit 3"' 1 2 3 9 15


if [ $# -ne 2 ]
echo "Usage: $0 fromDirFile ToDirFile"
exit 1

if [ -f hostfile ]
elif [ -f /users/bob/data/hostfile ]
echo "Can't find hostfile. No hosts to copy to. Out..."
exit 2

squashed_command=`echo $1 $2|/bin/sed -e 's/ * *//g' -e 's/|//' -e 's/\///g'`

print "" >>tmpfile.$pid
print "Report Output for \"scp $1 $2\"" >>tmpfile.$pid
print "______________________________" >>tmpfile.$pid
print "" >>tmpfile.$pid

cat $hostfile|while read name colon address
if [ $name == "#" ]
print "\nCopying \"$1 to $2\" on \c" >>tmpfile.$pid
print "$name... " >>tmpfile.$pid
print "$name... \"scp $1 $2\"... "
/usr/bin/scp -r $1 ${address}:$2 2>/dev/null|tee -a tmpfile.$pid

mv tmpfile.$pid OUTPUT.${squashed_command}.$pid

, Mike