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Loop function over multiple subfolders within one root folder?

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Jean Kim
Jean Kim on 2 Jan 2020
Dear Matlab experts,
Hello, I am struggling from a very simple task (not for me, but probably for you..).
I have one root folder(workdir) and within the folder, there are 50 subject folders, and within each subject folders, there are 'DTI' folder > 'Date of the MRI scan' folder > 'subject ID' folder > then files that I want to copy to the destination folder.
Simply,
Root > A > DTI > Date > ID > *.files
B > DTI > Date > ID > *.files
C > DTI > Date > ID > *.files
. . . and so on to 50.
* Date folders and ID folders are all different in name under ABC.. folders.
I want to copy the files at the end of the subfolders to the another destination folder.
(+ I want to use movefile function to change file name with A,B,C folder names, but if it is too complicated, it is okay to move on)
Please Plase help me out..!!
Thank you in advnace!

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Answers (1)

Stephen Cobeldick
Stephen Cobeldick on 2 Jan 2020
Edited: Stephen Cobeldick on 2 Jan 2020
The MATLAB documentation shows you can either obtain the names (i.e. using dir) or generate them (e.g. using sprintf):
Something like this should get you started, make the required changes:
D = 'absolute or relative path to the Root directory';
Z = 'absolute or relative path to the destination directory';
S = dir(fullfile(D,'*')); % contents of the Root directory.
C = setdiff({S([S.isdir]).name},{'.','..'}); % keep directories only.
for k = 1:numel(C)
old = fullfile(D,'DTI','othersubfolders',C{k},'string that matches your filename/s');
new = Z;
copyfile(old,new)
end

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Stephen Cobeldick
Stephen Cobeldick on 2 Jan 2020
"Any suggestions ?"
You will have to use dir, either:
  • detect the folder names and loop over them using nested loops, OR
  • use the recursive search syntax '**' (since R2016b), in which case you only need one loop.
What MATLAB version are you using?
Stephen Cobeldick
Stephen Cobeldick on 2 Jan 2020
You can probably use dir's recursive search feature. something like this:
D = 'absolute or relative path to the Root directory';
Z = 'absolute or relative path to the destination directory';
S = dir(fullfile(D,'**','pattern that matches your filenames'));
for k = 1:numel(S)
old = fullfile(S(k).folder,S(k).name);
new = Z;
copyfile(old,new)
end

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