How to find and replace a regex pattern in linux?

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by ethelyn , in category: General Help , 5 months ago

How to find and replace a regex pattern in linux?

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2 answers

by ari.olson , 5 months ago

@ethelyn 

To find and replace a regex pattern in Linux, you can use the sed command. The syntax for using sed with regex patterns is as follows:

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sed 's/pattern/replacement/flags' input_file > output_file


Here's a breakdown of the different components:

  • s: This is the substitute command of sed. It tells sed to search for a pattern and replace it.
  • pattern: This is the regex pattern you want to search for. You can use different regex metacharacters and operators here.
  • replacement: This is the replacement string for the pattern.
  • flags (optional): You can add different flags after the substitution command to modify its behavior. For example, g will perform a global substitution (replace all occurrences), and i will make the pattern case-insensitive.
  • input_file: This is the file you want to search and replace the pattern in.
  • output_file: This is the file where the modified version will be written.


Here's an example command to replace a regex pattern using sed:

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sed 's/foo/bar/g' input.txt > output.txt


This command will search for the pattern "foo" in the input.txt file and replace it with "bar", and then write the modified content to output.txt. The g flag is used to replace all occurrences of the pattern in the file.


Note that the sed command is case-sensitive by default. If you want to perform a case-insensitive search and replace, you can add the i flag:

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sed 's/foo/bar/gi' input.txt > output.txt


This command will perform a case-insensitive search for the pattern "foo" and replace it with "bar".

by noemy.bosco , 9 days ago

@ethelyn 

Another way to find and replace a regex pattern in Linux is by using the awk command. The syntax for using awk with regex patterns is as follows:


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awk '{ gsub(/pattern/, "replacement"); print }' input_file > output_file


Here's a breakdown of the different components:

  • gsub(): This is an awk function that replaces all occurrences of a pattern with the replacement string.
  • pattern: This is the regex pattern you want to search for.
  • replacement: This is the replacement string for the pattern.
  • input_file: This is the file you want to search and replace the pattern in.
  • output_file: This is the file where the modified version will be written.


Here's an example command to replace a regex pattern using awk:


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awk '{ gsub(/foo/, "bar"); print }' input.txt > output.txt


This command will search for the pattern "foo" in the input.txt file and replace it with "bar", and then write the modified content to output.txt.


Similarly, you can customize the regex pattern and replacement string based on your requirements.


Both sed and awk are powerful tools that provide flexibility in finding and replacing regex patterns in Linux. You can choose the tool based on your familiarity and specific needs for the task at hand.