FAQ: Manipulation - cp Part I

for myself I need to understand were I am in the directory tree and were I want to go. Start out with Pwd see were you are. Navigate to movies, just a good reference point. Now the instructions say to go to Drama, so cd drama. PWD look and make sure. or ls. now both of the directories we want to work with are in the drama directory so we only have to go sideway not up or down the tree. cp the directory that has the file (biopic) then the file name next, we tell where to put the file next with historical. That is why the answer in the hint section is short and not a full path. Start at drama.

you have to type Y or N

Hey all (and admin/dev team)

just thought to share my experience with this particular course. when doing the course, i noticed that whether you progress (getting that green tick) or not is dependent on getting the actual answers, but rather getting the code that they think you should be getting (basically passing their validation checks on ur code). i noticed that because the tutorial will say something like “you should be in movies/ now” but if you print the current directory, you will realise that you are in movies/drama, or something like that. then obviously the command you type to get the result will never be right, even if you managed to get the right answer.

this requires some tweak on the developers’ end, which i dont know if they will ever get to see this to improve the experience, but i think having this understanding should help you navigate the course.


Unfortunately it is unlikely to be seen by any of the relevant codecademy staff at this location within the forums. I think sending this to either but not both of the following forum sections would be helpful :slightly_smiling_face: (depending on exactly how you see this issue and the closest fit)-

I’m stick on step 5. Here’s what i type
cp cleopatra.txt historical
but it shows me
cp: cannot stat ‘cleopatra.txt’ : No such files or directory

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Take another look at the diagram on the RHS, cleopatra.txt is not actually in the drama directory. Remember you can always check where you are with pwd and see the contents of the current directory with ls.


I copied cleopatra to historical but it still would not let me move forward

Welcome to the forums! Did you do that using a single command? If you used multiple commands it will not work.

Posting the exact commands you used can also help us figure out what went wrong.

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My code was cp cleopatra.txt …/historical/ and did this from biopic/.

I think instruction 4 is supposed to leave you in /drama not /drama/biopic so you’d be using a relative path to copy cleopatra.text from the biopic directory and as well as the target for where it should be copied. Try completing this task whilst remaining in the /drama directory.

I used cp cleopatra.txt historical/ from drama/ and I checked that the command worked (which it did) and it still did not let me move forward.

I don’t think the tests are not based on the successful copy of the file. They’re looking for an exact text input and yes, that is annoying, but it’s what you need to work around. In which case starting from the expected directed directory will make your life easier.

Based on the diagram if your current working directory is drama/ then cleopatra.txt is not in the drama/ directory but in movies/drama/biopic/. A relative path would then be biopic/cleopatra.txt for the correct file, try working with that instead.


I wrote this line to move cleopatra.txt, and I do see it in the historical directory now, but that step won’t check off still…

$ cp biopic/cleopatra.txt …/historical

When typing just cp cleopatra.txt …/historical, this error message comes up

cp: cannot stat ‘cleopatra.txt’: No such file or directory

Double check this command. historical is actually a child of your current working directory, drama, so the .. isn’t needed.

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THERE we go… thank you! Took me the better part of my morning…


I’m stick on step 5. Here’s what i type
$ cp biopic/ray.txt notorious /historical
i need help please

Welcome to the forums!

Step 5 asks you to make a copy of cleopatra.txt into the historical directory. Make sure that you’ve got the right source file and destination directory in your command.

The syntax you need to use is cp source.txt destination/.

cp movies.txt drama.txt biopic.txt
cp: target ‘biopic.txt’ is not a directory
$ cp movies.txt drama.txt
cp: cannot stat ‘movies.txt’: No such file or directory
$ cp movies.txt drama.txt biopic.txt/
cp: target ‘biopic.txt/’ is not a directory
$ cp movies.txt
cp: missing destination file operand after ‘movies.txt’
Try ‘cp --help’ for more information.
$ cp movies.txt drama.txt
cp: cannot stat ‘movies.txt’: No such file or directory
$ cp movies.txt drama.txt…/
cp: cannot stat ‘movies.txt’: No such file or directory
$ cd movies.txt drama.txt biopic.tx
bash: cd: too many arguments
$ cd movies.txt drama.txt biopic.txt
bash: cd: too many arguments
$ cd movies.txt
bash: cd: movies.txt: No such file or directory
$ cd movies
bash: cd: movies: No such file or directory
$ ls movies
ls: cannot access ‘movies’: No such file or directory
$ cp movies.txt biopic.txt
cp: cannot stat ‘movies.txt’: No such file or directory

I have tried all of these combinations and more for step one and still would need to get help

I don’t think there’s a movies.txt file used at any point, so far as I can tell movies is used as a directory, never as a text file. Which instruction are you trying to complete?

This was the very first step I have tried various combinations to get to the next step but am unable to would appreciate any help