I have a directory full of files with the name template


The zip files contain a file yrq000.dat and I don't want to overwrite them when the files are uncompressed.

I am creating a processing script but I want to name that common file a name associated with its source zip and I'm checking the method:

for f in $(ls xxx*)

I can't figure out how to strip that opening parens from the string.

Is that possible with the bash string manipulation the way I am doing it? That is to say, it does not work. What do I need to add or remove so that it does work?

  • What exactly is the problem here? Consider adding example input and the corresponding desired output.
    – igal
    Apr 17, 2019 at 23:14

1 Answer 1


Try removing the dot from your pattern, i.e.:

for f in xxx*;
    echo "${uniquename}";

That takes files whose names are of the form xxx[0-9][0-9][0-9[0-9]ss(wrx-mmm).zip and converts them to strings of the form xxx[0-9][0-9][0-9[0-9]ss. Is that what you're trying to accomplish?

  • Yeah that did it. I see that I was using the "." as though it were a regex, when in fact it is taken as literal.
    – Ken Ingram
    Apr 17, 2019 at 23:31
  • 2
    Bash Pitfall #1 Apr 18, 2019 at 0:15
  • Interesting. I typically used expansion to select the "for" range and then when I saw "$()" was a tool I began using it. I guess I made some incorrect assumptions about why my loops wood break when filenames had whitespace or non-standard characters.
    – Ken Ingram
    Apr 18, 2019 at 1:03

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