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Thread: How to search and replace in Linux files

  1. #1
    Fli is online now
    Administrator Fli's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2013

    How to search and replace in Linux files

    Before doing search and replace, backup data.

    search and replace in file:
    sed -i "s|search|replace|g" file

    search and replace in the variable
    $variable="$(echo "$variable"|sed "s|search|replace|g")

    search and replace only if line contains defined phrase:
    sed -i "/Next/ s|#||g" file
    (replace # by nothing (remove) on the line that contains Next)

    search and replace multiple phrases in file:
    sed -i "s|search|replace|g;s|search2|replace2|g"

    Preview changes instead of writing them into file:
    cat "filename"|sed "s|search|replace|g"

    search and replace in all directory files containing username .php:
    for file in $(find -A1 /path/to/filesdir/|grep -v "./"|grep ".php");do sed -i "s|search|replace|g" $file;done


    backup before doing search&replace

    one can use / or other character instead of |

    some characters like slash and quotation mark needs to be escaped by backslash, example: sed -i "s|<img src=\"\" \/>|<img src=\"url\" \/>|g" file

  2. #2
    Member RuskinF's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2020

    Is this useful / helpfull? Yes | No
    grep is the most important command to use to replace data in files in Linux.
    I will let you know what you can do to use grep command.

    grep is a utility for searching for strings through multiple text files. Here I'm invoking it with the following parameters:

    R — perform a recursive search, also across symbolic links;
    i — case-insensitive search
    I — skip binary files. We are working with text, afer all;
    l — print results as a simple list of file names. This is needed for the next command.

    Apart from that, you need sed.

    sed is a glorious Unix utility that transforms text. In the current snippet I'm using it to replace text with the following parameters:

    i — replace in file. Remove it for a dry run mode;
    s/search/replace/g — this is the substitution command. The s stands for substitute (i.e. replace), the g instructs the command to replace all occurrences.

    FunFact: Azure Windows 10 is a virtual desktop based on Azure platform which itself is based on Linux kernel.

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