How to check for existence of a file in Java

This quick code tip shows how to check whether a file exists in Java. The Java code example used in the tutorial uses the NIO API’s java.nio.file.Path and java.nio.file.Files classes to determine whether a file at the given path in the file system exists or not.

Java NIO-based code example to check for existence of a file
package com.javabrahman.corejava;

import java.nio.file.Files;
import java.nio.file.Path;
import java.nio.file.Paths;

public class FileExists {
  public static void main(String args[]){

    //Example of file which doesn't exist
    Path filePath_1= Paths.get("C:\\xyz.txt");
    boolean fileExists_1= Files.exists(filePath_1);
    System.out.println("File 'xyz.txt' exists: "+fileExists_1);

    //Example of file which exists
    Path filePath_2= Paths.get("C:\\JavaBrahman\\LEVEL1\\file1.txt");
    boolean fileExists_2= Files.exists(filePath_2);
    System.out.println("File ‘file1.txt’ exists: "+fileExists_2);
  }
}
 OUTPUT of the above code
File ‘xyz.txt’ exists: false
File ‘file1.txt’ exists: true
Explanation of the code

  • The above class FileExists checks for existence of 2 files – xyz.txt(which doesn’t exist) and file1.txt(which exists) at their respective paths mentioned in the code.
  • The check for file existence is done in 2 steps(which need to be repeated for each file check). These steps are –
    1. Create an instance of Path using Paths.get() method with the complete file path passed as a String to it.
    2. Use Files.exist() method with the Path instance variable created in step 1 passed to it as parameter. Files.exist() returns a boolean value indicating the existence of the file – true if the file exists and false if it doesn’t.
  • In the above example, the output is as expected – check for xyz.txt returns false as the file does not exist, while the returned value is true for file1.txt as it exists at the given file path.

 

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