String manipulation: extracting a part of a string, text replacement, formatting to a given width, etc.

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9
votes
3answers
11k views

How to defer variable expansion

I was wanting to initialize some strings at the top of my script with variables that have no yet been set, such as: str1='I went to ${PLACE} and saw ${EVENT}' str2='If you do ${ACTION} you will ${...
23
votes
4answers
77k views

Splitting string by the first occurrence of a delimiter

I have a string in the next format id;some text here with possible ; inside and want to split it to 2 strings by first occurrence of the ;. So, it should be: id and some text here with possible ; ...
53
votes
6answers
94k views

How can I test if a variable is empty or contains only spaces?

The following bash syntax verifies if param isn't empty: [[ ! -z $param ]] For example: param="" [[ ! -z $param ]] && echo "I am not zero" No output and its fine. But when param ...
59
votes
11answers
125k views

Delete the last character of a string using string manipulation in shell script

I would like to delete the last character of a string, I tried this little script : #! /bin/sh t="lkj" t=${t:-2} echo $t but it prints "lkj", what I am doing wrong? Thank you in advance!
16
votes
2answers
32k views

grep on a variable

Lets say I have a variable line="This is where we select from a table." now I want to grep how many times does select occur in the sentence. grep -ci "select" $line I tried that, but it did not ...
11
votes
7answers
37k views

How to get the first word of a string?

When I 'echo *' I get the following output: file1 file2 file3 ... What I want is to pick out the first word. How can I proceed?
9
votes
4answers
2k views

How do I find the overlap of two strings in bash? [closed]

I have two strings. For the sake of the example they are set like this: string1="test toast" string2="test test" What I want is to find the overlap starting at the beginning of the strings. With ...
7
votes
2answers
5k views

JSON parsing on the shell

How can I parse JSON output on the shell? For example, Amazon Web Services provides a CLI to retrieve the status of your instances: $ aws ec2 describe-instances <my_instance_id> But the ...
7
votes
2answers
5k views

grep surrounding characters of a match

I'm looking to do a find and replace within a giant database dump, and it's not doing what I think should happen. I'd like to grep for my target string in the file, and then see the surrounding 8 ...
5
votes
6answers
43k views

Extract date from a variable in a different format

Let me explain you the problem $ date +%c -d "$d" Tue 31 Dec 2013 01:13:06 PM CET $ date +'Today is %F' -d "$d" Today is 2013-12-31 This solution corresponds to current date. But I have one ...
3
votes
4answers
2k views

Parsing process command-line arguments from pargs in a shell script

I get list of PIDs in my bash scripts (Java processes) and have to analyze their command-line arguments to determine which instance of server each PID corresponds to. At the moment I do it that way ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Shell test to find a pattern in a string

I just wanted to ask whether there is any command which would work on common shells (bash, dash, kornshell)? It is supposed to check if the line variable contains any part of the path. if [[ $line =~ ...
2
votes
3answers
450 views

Print total free memory from `free -m`

free -m currently puts out something like this. I would like to know using grep/awk how we can get the total free amount. i.e. 9083
18
votes
1answer
44k views

bash - how to uppercase the command line argument?

I searched SO and found that to uppercase a string following would work str="Some string" echo ${str^^} But I tried to do a similar thing on a command-line argument, which gave me the following ...
18
votes
7answers
51k views

bash - replace space with new line

How can I replace spaces with new lines on an input like: /path/to/file /path/to/file2 /path/to/file3 /path/to/file4 /path/to/file5 etc... To obtain the following: /path/to/file /path/to/file2 /...
7
votes
6answers
17k views

bash find lines starting with string

I have a bunch of files and I want to find which one contains sequential lines starting with a certain string. For example for the following file : Aaaaaaaaaaaa Baaaaaaaaaaa Cxxxxxxxxx Cyyyyyyyyy ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

Convert MAC address to Link-local address with bash

How can I convert a Mac address into an ipv6 Link-Local address? you have to add fe80:: at the start and insert ff:fe in the middle furthermore all leading zeros must be stripped
9
votes
5answers
2k views

Number of characters in a shell command's output

I am writing a script which needs to calculate the number of characters in a command's output in a single step. For example, using the command readlink -f /etc/fstab should return 10 because the ...
4
votes
4answers
3k views

extract every nth character from a string

I am trying to figure out a solution for this question. My approach to this problem so far is as below. Append all the characters together to make it a long string. After the above step, remove ...
4
votes
1answer
117 views

Bash regular expression pattern matching spaces, within double brackets test, using “~=” operator

Simply said, I just can't find a way to match a variable against some pattern containing spaces. Here is what I expected to work (echo 'ok' string) item='foobar baz' pat=".+bar baz" if [[ "$item" =~ ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

Checking if PATH contains $HOME/mydir and adding it if not (all in a script) [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: keep duplicates out of $PATH on source I am not an expert with Unix scripting. Some of my scripts are located in $HOME/mydir. Unfortunately, they are not accessible from ...
3
votes
8answers
375 views

bc output binary as nibbles separated by whitespace

I'm debugging code which contains quite a few bit shift operations, and I'm using bc a lot to look at what's happening on the bit level. Here's what I use: $ echo 'obase=2;598980975283696640' | bc ...
2
votes
1answer
4k views

C Shell script condition for if string contains a newline character

I'm not sure how to express this using the csh string matching syntax. I want to test whether a csh variable contains a newline. I'm basically looking for: if ($mystr !~ <pattern for strings which ...
2
votes
2answers
104 views

Filtering the Xth element in a row?

For example, I want to get only the 3rd element in each row when I call: xinput --list --short|grep "slave pointer" I get the output: ⎜ ↳ Virtual core XTEST pointer id=4 [...
1
vote
3answers
462 views

Script to split string

@terdon's answer provides this script: find . -type f -name "*mp3" | while read file; do album="$(basename "$(dirname "$file")")"; filename="$(basename "$file")"; artist=${filename%%-*}...
1
vote
4answers
3k views

Appending a string containing escape character with sed

Currently I use: sed -i -e "5a\\ ${text}" $filename to append something to a certain line, where the variable text contains a string such as "\epsilon". When using echo -E $text the string is ...
0
votes
1answer
97 views

string fill performance in shell scripts: what is the best amount and for what shell?

I was trying to determine the best performance for string fill like in: str+="A" #one per loop I came with this script for bash: #!/bin/bash bReport=false nLimit=${1-3000}; #up to 25000 echo "...