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16
votes
2answers
1k views

What does ${PATH:+:${PATH}} mean?

I recently noticed the following in my cygwin profile, more precisely: /usr/local/bin:/usr/bin${PATH:+:${PATH}} What does it mean? Why is not just $PATH? Is this an 'if $PATH exists then add ...
15
votes
1answer
1k views

Why does variable expansion without $ work in expressions?

#!/bin/bash VALUE=10 if [[ VALUE -eq 10 ]] then echo "Yes" fi To my surprise, this outputs "Yes". I would have expected it to require [[ $VALUE -eq 10 ]]. I've scanned the CONDITIONAL ...
12
votes
1answer
4k views

Variable substitution with an exclamation mark in bash

I have the following lines in my .cfg bash script file DDF_SOURCE="siebel_DATA_DATE_FORMAT" DATA_DATE_FORMAT=${!DDF_SOURCE} how is ${!DDF_SOURCE} evaluated? It would be !siebel_DATA_DATE_FORMAT, ...
8
votes
3answers
12k views

Why is my variable local one 'while read' loop, but not in another seemingly similar loop?

Why do I get different values for $x from the snippets below? #!/bin/bash x=1 echo fred>junk ; while read var ; do x=55 ; done <junk echo x=$x # x=55 .. I'd expect this result x=1 cat ...
8
votes
5answers
8k views

Double and triple substitution in bash and zsh

Follow-up to the background part in this question. In bash I can use {!FOO} for double substitution, in zsh ${(P)FOO}. In both, the old-school (hack-y) eval \$$FOO works. So, the smartest and most ...
8
votes
2answers
3k views

Dereference concatenated variable name

I can do this, but it requires making a string of the variable then dereferencing it. Is there any way to shorten it to a simpler statement? #!/bin/bash FRUITS="BANANA APPLE ORANGE" ...
8
votes
1answer
15k views

Executing commands with ssh and shell script using variables on a remote machine

I'd like to execute a command and script located on a remote machine with a script on a local machine. I know it's possible to execute these kind of commands with ssh, so I made: #!/bin/bash ssh ...
7
votes
2answers
223 views

How to avoid space after bash variable in string?

I have a variable for color. I use it to set color to strings, by evaluating it inside the string. However, I need to include space after the name(so that the name doesn't contain part of the text). ...
7
votes
3answers
4k views

How can I pass argument stored on a variable to WGET

I'm writing a bash script that extensively uses wget. To define all common parameters in one place I store them on variables. Here's a piece of code: useragent='--user-agent="Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT ...
7
votes
1answer
673 views

Why is bash extended-globbing variable substitution acting at the byte level?

I thought that bash variable substitution and globbing worked at character resolution, so I was rather surprised to see it acting at the byte level. Everything in my locale is en_AU.UTF-8 When ...
6
votes
2answers
401 views

Why do here-documents attempt shell substitution even on a commented line?

I wanted to see how some ASCII art looked in terminal so: $ cat <<EOF ...
6
votes
4answers
27k views

Use a variable reference “inside” another variable

I'm sure it is relatively simple, I just don't know how to do it. #!/usr/bin/ksh set `iostat` myvar=6 I want to something like echo ${$myvar} which i want interpreted as ${$myvar} -> ${6} -> value ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Piping bash string manipulation

I've read some other piping bash string manipulation questions but they seem to be specialized applications. Essentially, is there a way to do the below simpler? instead of $ string='hello world'; ...
5
votes
2answers
572 views

How can I add datetime to an existing file name in Linux?

I want to add date and time to the file name, for example: 08032016out.log.zip This is what I try to do: _now=$(date +"%m_%d_%Y") _file="$_nowout.log" touch $_file.txt # creating new file with the ...
5
votes
3answers
3k views

How to generate new var names on the fly

I'm trying to generate dynamic var names in a shell script to process a set of files with distinct names in a loop as follows: SAMPLE1='1-first.with.custom.name' SAMPLE2='2-second.with.custom.name' ...
5
votes
2answers
18k views

Passing a variable to sed

I cannot not use a shell variable in sed in the $NUMBER form. I have this line in my shell script: cat shared.txt sed 's/whatever1/$2 ... whatever2/' > shared2.txt The result in shared2.txt ...
5
votes
2answers
7k views

bash ${VAR//search/replace} and weird regex behaviour

I am trying to do some searching and replacing on a variable using the ${VAR//search/replace} parameter expansion. I have a pretty long and evil PS1, that I want to work out the size of after ...
4
votes
3answers
776 views

${!FOO} and zsh

${!FOO} performs a double substitution in bash, meaning it takes the (string) value of FOO and uses it as a variable name. zsh doesn’t support this feature. Is there a way to make this work the same ...
4
votes
3answers
239 views

Can command substitution be nested in variable substitution?

I would like to use variable substitution on a particular string that I access via a command. For example, if I copy something into my clipboard, I can access it like this. $ xclip -o -selection ...
4
votes
1answer
71 views

How to make sure the $var variable in expanded in “$varsomething”?

I'm trying to run something like this for n in 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 do run_this_command whatever.$nx$n.in done The files are named as whatever.1x1.in, whatever.2x2.in, ...
3
votes
3answers
3k views

Variable not expanding inside another variable bash

I am reading a csv file in bash script as follows: resource='/data/bscs/' while IFS='|'read seqid fname fpath do echo "FILENO: $seqid" echo "FILENAME: $fname" echo ...
3
votes
3answers
39 views

Assigning upper case variables to commands

While trying to decipher some scripts written by former employees of my current company, in many of the scripts, I came across the following statements which assign variables to some commands as shown ...
3
votes
1answer
102 views

Append (alter) each array element via parameter expansion (i.e. without printf)?

Let the script below exemplify my quandary.. #!/bin/zsh STUFF=( moose-hoof ovary clydsedale ) echo ${MINE=$(printf "MY-%s " $STUFF)} echo ${MINE_EXP=${STUFF/^/MY-}} MY-moose-hoof MY-ovary ...
3
votes
4answers
1k views

pure shell complex substitution in variable

However it may be impossible, I hope I'm just bad man reader =) Is there any way to substitute text in variables on several patterns at time or even using back reference? For example, I have ...
3
votes
2answers
720 views

Bash parameter expansion - greedy versus non-greedy

It's a bit of a contrived example but here goes: Say I have a variable 1.2.3.4 containing version information and need to replace the .4 at the end with .5 version=1.2.3.4 echo ${version%.*}.5 ...
3
votes
3answers
918 views

Can I reload variable in a watch command?

Part of my job involves some data handling. One of the tasks is to 'flatten' a set of directories (which we'll call Dir for now), and copy them to a new location called DirFlat. This can take a long ...
3
votes
1answer
124 views

Different behavior of $() and `` [duplicate]

% PATH="MYPATH" % VAR="PATH" % echo $(eval echo \$$VAR) MYPATH % echo `eval echo \$$VAR` 5707VAR ^^ This is the process number. I thought those two were exactly the same, but obviously there are ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

variable expansion within command substitution over SSH bash 4.X

I want to do this ssh ${w100user}@web100 'ls -l "$(grep "${1}" /etc/pure-ftpd/pureftpd.passwd|cut -d':' -f6)"' Which obviously performs an ssh session to server web100 as w100user and then greps ...
3
votes
2answers
4k views

using bash script to output new script: need mixture of variables to be replaced and not replaced

I'm having a problem with bash variable substitution. Here's a silly example of what I am trying to do. I need to output a new script from a bash script. A line (see echo in my example) has a mixture ...
3
votes
2answers
372 views

What is the effect of “${(@f)…}” in Zsh?

I ran into a Zsh script and wanted to know its meaning. In the scripts below there is ${$(@f)$(egrep "$2","$file")} expression. From what I searched, @ is to use represent all positional parameters, ...
3
votes
1answer
320 views

Service script calls another script with variables

I have a simple service script tomcat7 in /etc/init.d/ to start and stop my app server (tomcat) under the tomcat user. On RHEL6. #!/bin/bash # description: Tomcat Start Stop # processname: tomcat # ...
3
votes
1answer
30 views

Does tcsh have an equivalent for “${a:-b}” for default variable assignment like Bash?

I want to do this in one line because I want to use it in my aliases. Can I do this similarly in tcsh ? Using “${a:-b}” for variable assignment in scripts There are some ways of doing it here but ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

Trouble with mv and adding the date

I want to be able to move $oldfile to my backup folder and add the date to the file name. So I tried this... mv $oldfile /home/u0146121/backupfiles/$oldfile_$(date +%F-%T) This just gives me this ...
2
votes
2answers
93 views

Why does zsh allow name to be null in ${name:-word}?

From zsh documentation: ${name-word} ${name:-word} If name is set, or in the second form is non-null, then substitute its value; otherwise substitute word. In the second form name may ...
2
votes
2answers
584 views

Environment variable not expanded inside the command line argument

I have a file user-pid.out2 which has "usernumber" and "process id" as two columns. based on usernumber I want to find corresponding process id. the first two lines below does not show the output ...
2
votes
1answer
420 views

Expand shell variable without globbing

I want to check whether an input string refers to a file name - not a wildcard string like *.txt. This doesn't work: if [ -f "$1" ]; Because $1 gets expanded to *.txt, which gets expanded to, say ...
2
votes
1answer
361 views

shell variable in awk is not being passed to all the lines but just for the very first line of input?

inputfile:is2.txt 10.39.5.41,A1,B1 10.39.5.41,A2,B2 10.39.5.41,A3,B3 10.39.5.41,A4,B4 10.39.5.41,A5,B5 10.39.5.41,A6,B6 script : #!/bin/bash second_column="OOOOOOO" # OOOOOOO will be added to ...
2
votes
2answers
321 views

Picking a random file from each subfolder

Inspired by the accepted answer to this thread: List X random files from a directory, I tried to put together two lines that would pick one file from each subfolder of my current directory, with no ...
2
votes
3answers
3k views

Substitute placeholders in template

Say I have a shell configuration file config like this: HOST=localhost PORT=8080 Now I have a template template like this: The host is <%= @HOST %> The port is <%= @PORT %> How do I ...
2
votes
1answer
48 views

Expand variable in brace expansion [duplicate]

I am trying to enumerate a range of integers using a variable but having some trouble. When I type echo {1..5} I get 1 2 3 4 5 However, when I type a variable, I am unable to get the ...
2
votes
1answer
93 views

Running a constructed command from bash script

I constructed a command like this in a bash script a="my_cmd"; a="$a --verbose"; echo $a; $a; It works and executes my command correctly. But when I add an environment variable to the mix it ...
2
votes
2answers
819 views

Print file name extension using -exec in find

I am playing around with -exec flag of find command. I am trying to use the flag to print the extension name of files, using a fairly new Linux distribution release. Starting simple, this works: ...
2
votes
1answer
10k views

Adding a time stamp when moving a file in bash [duplicate]

#!/bin/bash while read server <&3; do #read server names into the while loop if [[ ! $server =~ [^[:space:]] ]] ; then #empty line exception continue fi echo "Connecting to - ...
2
votes
1answer
238 views

Passing variables to range patterns in awk

I'm trying to use range patterns in awk: grep -a volume somefile | awk '/^Apr 25 23:44:04*/,/^Apr 26 12:44:01*/ {print}' This works fine, but when I try to execute it by putting the date and time ...
2
votes
2answers
271 views

assign output of a c program to a shell variable: token error

I have a shell script to run several times a .c program ('switch') which admit 3 input paramenters. I want to run the program 4 times passing values {4,16,32,64}, and for parameters ...
2
votes
1answer
110 views

Parameter substitution and error messages: suppressing line numbers etc

Here is my example file: !/bin/bash # argument-one # Is first argument missing? # First method [[ "$1" == "" ]] && echo "Usage: $(basename $0) filename"; exit 1 # Second method # ...
2
votes
1answer
3k views

bash: export: `--wait': not a valid identifier

When I run git-sh from my terminal it works fine. But I get the following warning. bash: export: `--wait': not a valid identifier What is this and how do I get rid of it?
2
votes
2answers
55 views

Multiple lines of input for multiple variables

I would like to enter multiple lines of values for 3 different variables. For example, lets say I have $a, $b, and $c in a line like: ADD $a in $b to get $C My input will be in rows for all 3 ...
2
votes
2answers
34 views

rename of file extension doesnt work [closed]

I'm using code like the following to create a logfile using the shell's string manipulation tools: I have a file name and, in the case of an error, I need to create a log file with the err. Suppose ...
2
votes
2answers
32 views

variable substitution in CLI and for loops

I am pretty sure this has been asked already in some form, I just cannot come up with a good find to search it. I want to have a script that do things N times and to which I can pass as a variable ...