I'm trying to get the filename from unrar command verbose and deleting them all through command line.

The unrar command output is similar to this:

Extracting  BucketSort.cpp                                            OK 
Extracting  BucketSort.vcxproj                                        OK 
Extracting  BucketSort.vcxproj.filters                                OK 
Extracting  BucketSort.lastbuildstate                                 OK 
Extracting  BucketSort.log                                            OK 
Extracting  BucketSort.obj                                            OK 
Extracting  BucketSort.pch                                            OK 

So I came up with this awk command so far:

unrar e BucketSort.rar | awk '{if (match($0,/Extracting\s*([\w|.]+)\s*OK/,m)) print m[0]}'

but nothing is printed. When I leave just the word "Extracting" to match I can see "Extracting" for all the extracting files. So it's not recognizing something written in regex but I don't know what it is. Do you know what's wrong with the expression?

PS: You can check the regex expression here.

  • It looks like you're used to Perl, actually. In awk you need to backslash-escape a lot more of the "special" bits of regexes, including parentheses, and (I believe) + as well.
    – Wildcard
    Feb 11, 2016 at 20:01
  • 1
    I think GNU awk (which seems to be what's implied here, given the array argument to match) supports the perl-like \s and \w classes, however it's not clear to me how [\w|.] should be interpreted. Regardless, it seems to be a heavy-handed way to split what appear to be simple whitespace delimited fields - why not just do $1=="Extracting" && $3=="OK" Feb 11, 2016 at 20:59
  • 1
    gawk doesn't seem to like \w inside brackets (although I can't find documentation to support this claim). Both of these provide the output you seek: (\S+) and ([[:alnum:]_.]+). references gnu.org/software/gawk/manual/html_node/… and gnu.org/software/gawk/manual/html_node/Bracket-Expressions.html Feb 11, 2016 at 22:20

1 Answer 1


This should do the trick:

unrar e BucketSort.rar | awk '/^Extracting/ {print $2}'
  • Thank you DopeGhoti. Your expression does work but do you know why the expression I wrote doesn't? I'm wondering just in case I need to check another kind of output that I need. Feb 11, 2016 at 20:23
  • I think it's because your regex checker settings on the site you linked were for perl-compatible regex, and awk uses a slightly different flavor in which, as a comment on your OP mentions, needs a lot more escaping of special characters. awk is more Cish than perlish.
    – DopeGhoti
    Feb 11, 2016 at 20:46

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