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I know that there's ^ and $ but those are for the beginning and end of line, I am trying to match the beginning and end of string/word.

I tried to use \b, which didn't work. For example:

echo "lol llol" | grep -E \blol
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    You probably need to protect the \ from interpretation by your shell - either '\blol' or \\blol – steeldriver Apr 25 '16 at 12:40
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You can use either of these, depending on what you're trying to display:

$ echo "lol llol" | grep -E "\blol"
lol llol

$ echo "lol llol" | grep -Eo "\blol"
lol

Putting the regex in quotes solves your matching problem. The -o flag causes grep to only print the matched string instead of the entire line.

  • I thought about my grep command being wrong, but couldn't figure out I should have put them in quotes, that usually defeats the purpose of backslash. – DisplayName Apr 25 '16 at 12:44

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