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Basically I need what the OP of this question got but didn't want. How to delete everything after a certain pattern or a string in a file?

So I got the data like:

Something and something ........................... 23
Another one .......................................123
Somethingelse Inc. .................................243

So what I want is to delete the whole bunch of dots (and the numbers) after the space.

So far, I tried to use the OP's command there but it didn't quite work as I expected because it deletes everything after the first dot it encounters. Which means that the dot on the data of the sort Somethinelse Inc. is also deleted.

I tried to make the first (sed) answer from that question work by replacing the first .com with three dots and the second one with an empty space but I failed. This time everything after the first space is deleted or three dots left.

The second answer (ex -sc ...) worked like the OP wanted but it leaves some dots behind for me so I had no luck with it either.

I also tried to tweak the command from this answer but also failed at that. How can I delete everything until a pattern and everything after another pattern from a line?

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  • sed 's/ \.\..*$//' /path/to/file should work.
    – DopeGhoti
    Nov 1, 2016 at 16:58
  • It works. Thank you. Why didn't you put it as an answer? Nov 1, 2016 at 17:00
  • Because you said sed didn't work, I was expecting clarification as to what is didn't do properly. I'll copy it into an answer shortly.
    – DopeGhoti
    Nov 1, 2016 at 17:01

3 Answers 3

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sed 's/ \.\..*$//' /path/to/file should work:

 \.\. - A space followed by two literal periods
.*    - One or characters of any type
$     - End of line 
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Another but unelegant solution could be:

cat path/to/yourfile | sed -E "s/[\.]{2,}//g" | sed "s/[0-9]//g" > path/to/new_file

where:

  • -E Interpret regular expressions as extended (modern) regular expressions
  • [\.]{2,} match a dot per two or more occurrences
  • [0-9] match all digits

  • s/expr//g means substitute matched expr with nothing as much as you can (g)

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How about this:

sed 's/\.\+ *[[:digit:]]\+[[:space:]]*$//g'

which means:

one+to+many (\+) dots (\.) AND zero-to-many (*) spaces ( ) AND one+to+many (\+) digits([[:digit:]]) AND just-in-case any (*) whitespace ([[:space:]]) AND End of this line ($)

Tested with (Note that i inserted "...234" in 2nd row, and trailing Tab/spaces):

Something and something ........................... 23<Tab>
An ...234 other one .......................................123<space>
Somethingelse Inc. .................................243<some spaces>

And the result:

xb@dnxb:/tmp$ sed 's/\.\+ *[[:digit:]]\+[[:space:]]*$//g' sample.txt
Something and something 
An ...234 other one 
Somethingelse Inc. 
xb@dnxb:/tmp$ 
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  • I accepted the other answer because it worked for me but it'd be nice if you could explain a bit what your answer does or what does it do differently. Nov 1, 2016 at 17:09
  • @ShabanShneta updated.
    – 林果皞
    Nov 1, 2016 at 17:18

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