Time of last modification of a file (e.g. the data in the file has changed). The information is taken from the inode.
$ stat -s $file | tr ' ' '\n' | grep mtime st_mtime=1130490970 $ date -r 1130490970 Fri Oct 28 11:16:10 CEST 2005 $ ls -lT $file -rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 33554432 Oct 28 11:16:10 2005 file
If a file has been modified the mtime will change to that date. The mtime can be changed in a file:
# date -r 0 Thu Jan 1 01:00:00 CET 1970 # touch -mt 197001010100.01 $file # ls -lT $file -rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 33554432 Jan 1 01:00:01 1970 file
When a files mtime is changed the ctime will update naturally to the date when this happened.