Unix & Linux Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for users of Linux, FreeBSD and other Un*x-like operating systems. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I'm learning the look utility and I don't understand the meaning of the -t option.

Can someone show me some examples of it?

I read the man page, but still don't know what it exactly means.

share|improve this question

migrated from stackoverflow.com Oct 7 '11 at 17:15

This question came from our site for professional and enthusiast programmers.

If you'd actually look at the man page, you'd see that the option -t is to ignore the case when matching. – Tinctorius Oct 7 '11 at 13:39
Actually -f is ignore case; -t specifies a termination character – Paul R Oct 7 '11 at 13:56
@Paul I did read the man page. But still didn't get what it actually means. That's why I ask for examples. – mitnk Oct 7 '11 at 14:04
@mitnk: not really a programming question - it will probably be moved to superuser.com shortly - but the man page is pretty clear - what part don't you understand ? – Paul R Oct 7 '11 at 14:33
@Paul Thank you for your comments. I just found what it means. The part I don't understand is English sentence I guess ;) Sorry for my bad English. – mitnk Oct 7 '11 at 14:44
up vote 1 down vote accepted

I don't know why that option would be useful. However here's an example:

$ look -df uncle /usr/share/lib/dict/words
$ look -df -tc uncle /usr/share/lib/dict/words

I suppose it's to give you a mechanism to look up "similar" words if you don't have complete control over the lookup-string.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.