I have a folder with txt, html, jpg and png files.
Now I want to go over all textbased files (txt and html) and start a search and replace.
I did the following and it is working fine:

find ./ -iregex '.*\.\(txt\|html\)$' -exec sed -i 's/search/replace/g' {} +

But now I also want to log the files in which a replacement was executed.
Let's say I have five txt and/or html files in my folder. But in only two of them there will be something replaces because the string search is in them.
So after the command I want to have a log file (for example myLog.log) in which the two files are printed (full path).

But how can I achieve such a command?
The sed command does not have such a parameter/option.

1 Answer 1


You will have to search fist for search pattern, then sed, and log.

try (line break for readability)

find ./ -iregex '.*\.\(txt\|html\)$' \
    -exec grep -q search {} \;  \
    -print \
    -exec sed -i 's/search/replace/g' {} + \
    > my-sed.log


  • search in -exec grep -q search {} \; is your search pattern. Note that you can't use + who will match more that one file.
  • -print print matched file, and thus can log
  • 1
    I would also probably change that messy -iregex thing into \( -iname '*.txt' -o -iname '*.html' \) for clarity (and also to make it somewhat more portable).
    – Kusalananda
    Feb 20, 2019 at 13:29

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