A tree or tree structure is a hierarchical data structure that organizes data elements, called nodes, by connecting them with links, called branches. This structure is used to help display large amounts of information in an easy to read format.
For example, the picture shows what a tree structure of each of the directories in the current directory. In the example to the right, you can see that C: is the drive and the uppermost part of the tree and the branch comming down from C: are all of the directories in C:. Some of the directories may also have their own branches. For example, the cdn directory has three other branches (directories). If you wanted to change directories to get into the big directory of cdn, you would first need to move into the cdn directory, and then go into the big directory.
Using a tree command to list directories, or another program capable of displaying trees, may help give you an overview of your disk usage.
- See our MS-DOS tree command for further information about the MS-DOS and Windows tree command.
- See our Linux tree command page for further information on the Linux version of this command.