Questions tagged [whitespace]

combination of spaces, tabs, or newlines which create "empty" space in a line or column

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281
votes
4answers
219k views

Why does my shell script choke on whitespace or other special characters?

Or, an introductory guide to robust filename handling and other string passing in shell scripts. I wrote a shell script which works well most of the time. But it chokes on some inputs (e.g. on some ...
15
votes
3answers
5k views

Brackets in if condition: why am I getting syntax errors without whitespace?

I am using the below script to move two days back when script runs at starting two days of the year and also check first and second days of every month and move two days back. if [$month="01"] &&...
48
votes
1answer
10k views

Why is bash not storing commands that start with spaces?

If I perform a sequence of commands like: $ ls $ grep abc file.txt and then use the up arrow key to get the previous one, the terminal will show the last cmd (which is the grep here) But if I do ...
11
votes
2answers
4k views

Quoted vs unquoted string expansion

for i in $(xrandr); do echo "$i" ; done for i in "$(xrandr)"; do echo "$i"; done for i in "$(xrandr)"; do echo $i; done I understand why 1 differs from 2. But why does 3 give a different output from ...
7
votes
2answers
4k views

Why are bash tests so picky about whitespace?

As a primarily Java programmer, I find the bash if-then construct quite confusing, especially regarding whitespace. Can anyone explain why the first one works, but not the second or third? #works if [...
7
votes
5answers
9k views

How to make xargs handle spaces and special chars from cat?

I have a file that contains a list of names. i.e.: Long Name One (001) Long Name Two (201) Long Name Three (123) ... with spaces and some special characters. I wanted to make directories out of ...
12
votes
4answers
1k views

bash: whitespace-safe procedural use of find into select

Given these file names: $ ls -1 file file name otherfile bash itself does perfectly fine with embedded whitespace: $ for file in *; do echo "$file"; done file file name otherfile $ select file in *;...
20
votes
3answers
14k views

How to automatically strip trailing spaces on save in Vi and Vim?

Is there a .vimrc setting to automatically remove trailing whitespace when saving a file? Ideally (to be safe) I would like to only have this functionality for certain files, e.g. *.rb
13
votes
3answers
5k views

Why does bash have a HISTCONTROL=ignorespace option?

Or to phrase it differently, why would you want to prevent commands from being written to the bash history? (Inspired by a related question.)
2
votes
1answer
3k views

Passing arguments with spaces and quotes to a script (without quoting everything)

The following works great on the command-line: $ ffmpeg -i input.m4a -metadata 'title=Spaces and $pecial char'\''s' output.m4a How do I parameterize this command and use it in a script/function? I ...
98
votes
3answers
36k views

Why does Vim indent pasted code incorrectly?

In Vim, if I paste this script: #!/bin/sh VAR=1 while ((VAR < 10)) do echo "VAR1 is now $VAR" ((VAR = VAR +2)) done echo "finish" I get these strange results: #!/bin/...
5
votes
10answers
2k views

How to quickly add some space in the terminal?

I often find myself scrolling back through the terminal with the mouse-wheel to see the first of many C++ template errors issued by a command. Anticipating this, I'll hold down the Return key to give ...
1
vote
1answer
121 views

How can I edit my bash script to account for whitespace entries? [duplicate]

I made a script to automate ffmpeg conversion from mkv > m4v > open the m4v in Subler.app to import the metadata manually, at which point I'll move the file into my iTunes library. I use iTunes ...
4
votes
2answers
3k views

Using files that have spaces in their name in pipes [duplicate]

I have folder named play which contains a file damn file (with space). When I use find and pipe the output to tar: find play/ -name 'damn*' | tar cf archive.tar -T - It works perfectly. Why does ...
1
vote
2answers
2k views

bash question about if and then [duplicate]

I'm writing this in my script. It has other parts but I'm getting stuck on this part only. if [[$# == $year $month $day ]] ; then cal $day $month $year fi When I run this it give me this msg: ...