GREP(1) User Commands GREP(1)

NAME


grep, egrep, fgrep - search a file for a pattern

SYNOPSIS


grep [-E|-F] [-bchHilnrRsqvwx] [-A num] [-B num] [-C num|-num]
[-e pattern_list]... [-f pattern_file]... [pattern_list] [file]...

DESCRIPTION


The grep utility searches text files for a pattern and prints all lines
that contain that pattern. If no files are specified, grep assumes
standard input. Normally, each line found is copied to standard output.
The file name is printed before each line found if there is more than one
input file.

grep handles patterns as basic regular expressions (BREs); egrep (same as
grep -E) handles patterns as extended regular expressions (EREs); fgrep
(same as grep -F) handles patterns as fixed strings.

OPTIONS


The following options are supported:

-A num Prints num input lines of context after each matching line. If
there are multiple matching lines, their context lines are
separated by a `--' delimiter line.

-b Precedes each line by the block number on which it was found. This
can be useful in locating block numbers by context (first block is
0).

-B num Prints num input lines of context before each matching line. If
there are multiple matching lines, their context lines are
separated by a `--' delimiter line.

-c Prints only a count of the lines that contain the pattern.
Overrides -l.

-C num, -num
Prints num input lines of context before and number input lines of
context after each matching line. If there are multiple matching
lines, their context lines are separated by a `--' delimiter line.

-e pattern_list
Specifies one or more patterns to be used during the search for
input. Patterns in pattern_list must be separated by a NEWLINE
character. A null pattern can be specified by two adjacent newline
characters in pattern_list. Unless the -E or -F option is also
specified, each pattern is treated as a BRE, as described in
regex(5).

-E Matches using extended regular expressions. Treats each pattern
specified as an ERE, as described in regex(5). If any entire ERE
pattern matches an input line, the line is matched. A null ERE
matches every line.

-f pattern_file
Reads one or more patterns from the file named by the path name
pattern_file. Patterns in pattern_file are terminated by a NEWLINE
character. A null pattern can be specified by an empty line in
pattern_file. Unless the -E or -F option is also specified, each
pattern is treated as a BRE, as described in regex(5).

-F Matches using fixed strings. Treats each pattern specified as a
string instead of a regular expression. If an input line contains
any of the patterns as a contiguous sequence of bytes, the line is
matched. A null string matches every line.

-h Prevents the name of the file containing the matching line from
being prepended to that line. Used when searching multiple files.

-H Precedes each line by the name of the file containing the matching
line.

-i Ignores upper/lower case distinction during comparisons.

-l Prints only the names of files with matching lines, separated by
NEWLINE characters. Does not repeat the names of files when the
pattern is found more than once. Overrides -H.

-n Precedes each line by its line number in the file (first line is
1).

-q Quiet. Does not write anything to the standard output, regardless
of matching lines. Exits with zero status if an input line is
selected. Overrides -c and -l.

-r Read all files under each directory, recursively. Follow symbolic
links on the command line, but skip symlinks that are encountered
recursively. If file is a device, FIFO, or socket, skip it.

-R Read all files under each directory, recursively, following all
symbolic links.

-s Suppresses error messages about nonexistent or unreadable files.

-v Prints all lines except those that contain the pattern.

-w Searches for the expression as a word as if surrounded by `\<' and
`\>'.

-x Considers only input lines that use all characters in the line to
match an entire fixed string or regular expression to be matching
lines.

OPERANDS


The following operands are supported:

file A path name of a file to be searched for the patterns. If no file
operands are specified, the standard input is used.

pattern_list
Specifies one or more patterns to be used during the search for
input. This operand is treated as if it were specified as -e
pattern_list. Should not be specified if either -e or -f is
specified.

USAGE


Be careful using the characters `$', `*', `[', `^', `|', `(', `)', and `\'
in the pattern_list because they are also meaningful to the shell. It is
safest to enclose the entire pattern_list in single quotes: '...'.

The -e pattern option has the same effect as the pattern operand, but is
useful when pattern begins with the hyphen delimiter. It is also useful
when it is more convenient to provide multiple patterns as separate
arguments.

Multiple -e and -f options are accepted and grep uses all of the patterns
it is given while matching input text lines. Notice that the order of
evaluation is not specified. If an implementation finds a null string as a
pattern, it is allowed to use that pattern first, matching every line, and
effectively ignore any other patterns.

The -q option provides a means of easily determining whether or not a
pattern (or string) exists in a group of files. When searching several
files, it provides a performance improvement (because it can quit as soon
as it finds the first match) and requires less care by the user in choosing
the set of files to supply as arguments (because it exits zero if it finds
a match even if grep detected an access or read error on earlier file
operands).

Large File Behavior


See largefile(5) for the description of the behavior of grep when
encountering files greater than or equal to 2 Gbyte (2^31 bytes).

EXIT STATUS


The following exit values are returned:

0 One or more matches were found.

1 No matches were found.

2 Syntax errors or inaccessible files (even if matches were found).

EXAMPLES


Example 1 Finding All Uses of a Word
To find all uses of the word `Posix' (in any case) in the file
text.mm, and write with line numbers:

$ grep -i -n posix text.mm

Example 2 Finding All Empty Lines
To find all empty lines in the standard input:

$ grep ^$

or

$ grep -v .

Example 3 Finding Lines Containing Strings
All of the following commands print all lines containing strings
`abc' or `def' or both:

$ grep 'abc
def'
$ grep -e 'abc
def'
$ grep -e 'abc' -e 'def'
$ grep -E 'abc|def'
$ grep -E -e 'abc|def'
$ grep -E -e 'abc' -e 'def'
$ grep -E 'abc
def'
$ grep -E -e 'abc
def'
$ grep -F -e 'abc' -e 'def'
$ grep -F 'abc
def'
$ grep -F -e 'abc
def'

Example 4 Finding Lines with Matching Strings
Both of the following commands print all lines matching exactly
`abc' or `def':

$ grep -E '^abc$
^def$'
$ grep -F -x 'abc
def'

ENVIRONMENT VARIABLES


See environ(5) for descriptions of the following environment variables that
affect the execution of grep: LANG, LC_ALL, LC_COLLATE, LC_CTYPE,
LC_MESSAGES, and NLSPATH.

CODE SET INDEPENDENCE


Enabled

INTERFACE STABILITY


Committed

SEE ALSO


sed(1), sh(1), attributes(5), environ(5), largefile(5), regex(5),
standards(5)

STANDARDS


The grep utility is compliant with the IEEE Std 1003.1-2008 (``POSIX.1'')
specification with the exception of -s option being the same as -q in
current implementation for historic reasons. The flags [-AbBChHrRw] are
extensions to that specification.

NOTES


The results are unspecified if input files contain lines longer than
LINE_MAX bytes or contain binary data. LINE_MAX is defined in <limits.h>.

Portable applications should use grep -E and grep -F instead of egrep and
fgrep, respectively.

HISTORY


The grep command first appeared in Version 6 AT&T UNIX.

In the past /usr/bin/grep, /usr/bin/egrep, and /usr/bin/fgrep were separate
implementations, and were not standard conforming, with standard conforming
ones installed as /usr/xpg4/bin/grep, /usr/xpg4/bin/egrep, and
/usr/xpg4/bin/fgrep, respectively. Now all non-conforming implementations
are removed, and the ones previously found in /usr/xpg4/bin are installed
in /usr/bin.

illumos February 10, 2018 illumos