Provided by: pcregrep_7.8-3build1_i386 bug

NAME

       pcregrep - a grep with Perl-compatible regular expressions.

SYNOPSIS

       pcregrep   [options]   [long   options]  [pattern]  [path1  path2  ...]
       zpcregrep [options] [long options] [pattern] [file1 file2 ...]

DESCRIPTION


       pcregrep searches files for character patterns,  in  the  same  way  as
       other grep commands do, but it uses the PCRE regular expression library
       to support patterns that are compatible with the regular expressions of
       Perl  5.  See  pcrepattern(3)  for  a  full  description  of syntax and
       semantics of the regular expressions that PCRE supports.

       Patterns, whether supplied on the command line or in a  separate  file,
       are given without delimiters. For example:

         pcregrep Thursday /etc/motd

       If you attempt to use delimiters (for example, by surrounding a pattern
       with slashes, as is common in Perl scripts), they  are  interpreted  as
       part  of  the pattern. Quotes can of course be used to delimit patterns
       on the command line because they are  interpreted  by  the  shell,  and
       indeed  they  are  required  if a pattern contains white space or shell
       metacharacters.

       The first argument that follows any option settings is treated  as  the
       single  pattern  to  be  matched  when  neither  -e  nor -f is present.
       Conversely, when one or both of  these  options  are  used  to  specify
       patterns,  all arguments are treated as path names. At least one of -e,
       -f, or an argument pattern must be provided.

       If no files are specified,  pcregrep  reads  the  standard  input.  The
       standard  input can also be referenced by a name consisting of a single
       hyphen.  For example:

         pcregrep some-pattern /file1 - /file3

       By default, each line that matches a pattern is copied to the  standard
       output,  and if there is more than one file, the file name is output at
       the start of each line, followed by a colon. However, there are options
       that  can  change  how  pcregrep  behaves. In particular, the -M option
       makes it possible to search for patterns  that  span  line  boundaries.
       What  defines  a  line  boundary  is  controlled  by the -N (--newline)
       option.

       Patterns are limited to 8K  or  BUFSIZ  characters,  whichever  is  the
       greater.   BUFSIZ  is defined in <stdio.h>. When there is more than one
       pattern (specified by the use of -e and/or -f), each pattern is applied
       to  each  line  in the order in which they are defined, except that all
       the -e patterns are tried before  the  -f  patterns.  As  soon  as  one
       pattern  matches  (or  fails  to  match  when  -v  is used), no further
       patterns are considered.

       When --only-matching, --file-offsets, or --line-offsets  is  used,  the
       output is the part of the line that matched (either shown literally, or
       as an offset). In this case, scanning resumes immediately following the
       match, so that further matches on the same line can be found.  If there
       are multiple patterns, they are all tried on the remainder of the line.
       However, patterns that follow the one that matched are not tried on the
       earlier part of the line.

       If the LC_ALL or LC_CTYPE environment variable is  set,  pcregrep  uses
       the  value to set a locale when calling the PCRE library.  The --locale
       option can be used to override this.

       zpcregrep is a wrapper script that allows  pcregrep  to  work  on  gzip
       compressed files.

SUPPORT FOR COMPRESSED FILES


       It  is  possible  to compile pcregrep so that it uses libz or libbz2 to
       read files whose names end in .gz or .bz2, respectively. You  can  find
       out whether your binary has support for one or both of these file types
       by running it with the --help option. If the appropriate support is not
       present,  files are treated as plain text. The standard input is always
       so treated.

OPTIONS


       --        This terminate the list of options. It is useful if the  next
                 item  on  the command line starts with a hyphen but is not an
                 option. This  allows  for  the  processing  of  patterns  and
                 filenames that start with hyphens.

       -A number, --after-context=number
                 Output  number  lines of context after each matching line. If
                 filenames and/or line numbers  are  being  output,  a  hyphen
                 separator is used instead of a colon for the context lines. A
                 line containing "--" is output between each group  of  lines,
                 unless  they  are  in  fact contiguous in the input file. The
                 value of number is expected to be relatively small.  However,
                 pcregrep  guarantees  to  have  up  to  8K  of following text
                 available for context output.

       -B number, --before-context=number
                 Output number lines of context before each matching line.  If
                 filenames  and/or  line  numbers  are  being output, a hyphen
                 separator is used instead of a colon for the context lines. A
                 line  containing  "--" is output between each group of lines,
                 unless they are in fact contiguous in  the  input  file.  The
                 value  of number is expected to be relatively small. However,
                 pcregrep guarantees to  have  up  to  8K  of  preceding  text
                 available for context output.

       -C number, --context=number
                 Output  number  lines  of  context both before and after each
                 matching line.  This is equivalent to setting both -A and  -B
                 to the same value.

       -c, --count
                 Do  not  output individual lines; instead just output a count
                 of the number of lines that would otherwise have been output.
                 If  several  files  are  given, a count is output for each of
                 them. In this mode, the -A, -B, and -C options are ignored.

       --colour, --color
                 If this option is given without any data, it is equivalent to
                 "--colour=auto".   If  data  is required, it must be given in
                 the same shell item, separated by an equals sign.

       --colour=value, --color=value
                 This option specifies under what circumstances the part of  a
                 line that matched a pattern should be coloured in the output.
                 The value may be "never" (the default), "always", or  "auto".
                 In  the  latter  case, colouring happens only if the standard
                 output  is  connected  to  a  terminal.  The  colour  can  be
                 specified by setting the environment variable PCREGREP_COLOUR
                 or PCREGREP_COLOR. The value of this  variable  should  be  a
                 string  of  two  numbers, separated by a semicolon.  They are
                 copied directly into the control string for setting colour on
                 a  terminal, so it is your responsibility to ensure that they
                 make sense. If neither of the environment variables  is  set,
                 the default is "1;31", which gives red.

       -D action, --devices=action
                 If  an  input  path  is  not  a  regular file or a directory,
                 "action" specifies how it is to be  processed.  Valid  values
                 are  "read" (the default) or "skip" (silently skip the path).

       -d action, --directories=action
                 If an input path is a directory, "action" specifies how it is
                 to  be  processed.   Valid  values  are "read" (the default),
                 "recurse" (equivalent to the -r option), or "skip"  (silently
                 skip  the path). In the default case, directories are read as
                 if they were ordinary files. In some  operating  systems  the
                 effect  of reading a directory like this is an immediate end-
                 of-file.

       -e pattern, --regex=pattern, --regexp=pattern
                 Specify a pattern to be matched.  This  option  can  be  used
                 multiple  times  in order to specify several patterns. It can
                 also be used as a way of specifying  a  single  pattern  that
                 starts with a hyphen. When -e is used, no argument pattern is
                 taken from the command line; all  arguments  are  treated  as
                 file names. There is an overall maximum of 100 patterns. They
                 are applied to each line in  the  order  in  which  they  are
                 defined  until one matches (or fails to match if -v is used).
                 If -f is used with -e, the command line patterns are  matched
                 first, followed by the patterns from the file, independent of
                 the order in which these options  are  specified.  Note  that
                 multiple  use  of -e is not the same as a single pattern with
                 alternatives. For example, X|Y finds the first character in a
                 line  that  is  X or Y, whereas if the two patterns are given
                 separately, pcregrep finds X if it is  present,  even  if  it
                 follows  Y  in  the line. It finds Y only if there is no X in
                 the line. This really matters only if you  are  using  -o  to
                 show the part(s) of the line that matched.

       --exclude=pattern
                 When  pcregrep  is  searching  the  files in a directory as a
                 consequence of the -r (recursive search) option, any  regular
                 files   whose   names   match   the   pattern  are  excluded.
                 Subdirectories are not excluded  by  this  option;  they  are
                 searched   recursively,  subject  to  the  --exclude_dir  and
                 --include_dir  options.  The  pattern  is  a   PCRE   regular
                 expression, and is matched against the final component of the
                 file name (not the entire path). If a file name matches  both
                 --include  and  --exclude, it is excluded.  There is no short
                 form for this option.

       --exclude_dir=pattern
                 When pcregrep is searching the contents of a directory  as  a
                 consequence   of   the  -r  (recursive  search)  option,  any
                 subdirectories whose names match the  pattern  are  excluded.
                 (Note   that   the   --exclude   option   does   not   affect
                 subdirectories.) The pattern is a  PCRE  regular  expression,
                 and  is  matched against the final component of the name (not
                 the  entire  path).  If  a  subdirectory  name  matches  both
                 --include_dir  and --exclude_dir, it is excluded. There is no
                 short form for this option.

       -F, --fixed-strings
                 Interpret each pattern as a list of fixed strings,  separated
                 by  newlines,  instead  of  as  a  regular expression. The -w
                 (match as a word) and -x (match whole line)  options  can  be
                 used with -F. They apply to each of the fixed strings. A line
                 is selected if any of the  fixed  strings  are  found  in  it
                 (subject to -w or -x, if present).

       -f filename, --file=filename
                 Read  a  number  of patterns from the file, one per line, and
                 match them against each line of input. A data line is  output
                 if any of the patterns match it. The filename can be given as
                 "-" to refer to the standard input. When -f is used, patterns
                 specified  on  the command line using -e may also be present;
                 they are tested before the file’s patterns. However, no other
                 pattern  is  taken  from  the command line; all arguments are
                 treated as file names. There is an  overall  maximum  of  100
                 patterns. Trailing white space is removed from each line, and
                 blank lines are ignored. An empty file contains  no  patterns
                 and  therefore  matches  nothing. See also the comments about
                 multiple patterns versus a single pattern  with  alternatives
                 in the description of -e above.

       --file-offsets
                 Instead  of  showing lines or parts of lines that match, show
                 each match as an offset from the start  of  the  file  and  a
                 length,  separated  by  a  comma. In this mode, no context is
                 shown. That is, the -A, -B, and -C options  are  ignored.  If
                 there is more than one match in a line, each of them is shown
                 separately. This option is mutually  exclusive  with  --line-
                 offsets and --only-matching.

       -H, --with-filename
                 Force  the  inclusion  of the filename at the start of output
                 lines when searching a single file. By default, the  filename
                 is  not  shown in this case. For matching lines, the filename
                 is followed by a colon and a  space;  for  context  lines,  a
                 hyphen  separator  is  used.  If  a line number is also being
                 output, it follows the file name without a space.

       -h, --no-filename
                 Suppress the output filenames when searching multiple  files.
                 By  default,  filenames  are  shown  when  multiple files are
                 searched. For matching lines, the filename is followed  by  a
                 colon  and  a space; for context lines, a hyphen separator is
                 used. If a line number is also being output, it  follows  the
                 file name without a space.

       --help    Output  a  help  message, giving brief details of the command
                 options and file type support, and then exit.

       -i, --ignore-case
                 Ignore upper/lower case distinctions during comparisons.

       --include=pattern
                 When pcregrep is searching the files  in  a  directory  as  a
                 consequence  of  the -r (recursive search) option, only those
                 regular files whose names match  the  pattern  are  included.
                 Subdirectories  are always included and searched recursively,
                 subject to the --include_dir and --exclude_dir  options.  The
                 pattern  is a PCRE regular expression, and is matched against
                 the final component of the file name (not the  entire  path).
                 If  a  file  name matches both --include and --exclude, it is
                 excluded. There is no short form for this option.

       --include_dir=pattern
                 When pcregrep is searching the contents of a directory  as  a
                 consequence  of  the -r (recursive search) option, only those
                 subdirectories whose names match the  pattern  are  included.
                 (Note   that   the   --include   option   does   not   affect
                 subdirectories.) The pattern is a  PCRE  regular  expression,
                 and  is  matched against the final component of the name (not
                 the  entire  path).  If  a  subdirectory  name  matches  both
                 --include_dir  and --exclude_dir, it is excluded. There is no
                 short form for this option.

       -L, --files-without-match
                 Instead of outputting lines from the files, just  output  the
                 names  of  the files that do not contain any lines that would
                 have been output.  Each  file  name  is  output  once,  on  a
                 separate line.

       -l, --files-with-matches
                 Instead  of  outputting lines from the files, just output the
                 names of the files containing  lines  that  would  have  been
                 output.  Each  file  name is output once, on a separate line.
                 Searching stops as soon as a matching  line  is  found  in  a
                 file.

       --label=name
                 This option supplies a name to be used for the standard input
                 when file names are being output. If not supplied, "(standard
                 input)" is used. There is no short form for this option.

       --line-offsets
                 Instead  of  showing lines or parts of lines that match, show
                 each match as a line number, the offset from the start of the
                 line,  and a length. The line number is terminated by a colon
                 (as usual; see the -n option), and the offset and length  are
                 separated  by  a  comma.  In  this mode, no context is shown.
                 That is, the -A, -B, and -C options are ignored. If there  is
                 more  than  one  match  in  a  line,  each  of  them is shown
                 separately. This option is mutually  exclusive  with  --file-
                 offsets and --only-matching.

       --locale=locale-name
                 This  option  specifies  a  locale  to  be  used  for pattern
                 matching. It overrides the value in the  LC_ALL  or  LC_CTYPE
                 environment  variables.  If  no locale is specified, the PCRE
                 library’s default (usually the "C" locale) is used. There  is
                 no short form for this option.

       -M, --multiline
                 Allow  patterns to match more than one line. When this option
                 is given,  patterns  may  usefully  contain  literal  newline
                 characters  and  internal  occurrences of ^ and $ characters.
                 The output for any one match may consist  of  more  than  one
                 line.  When this option is set, the PCRE library is called in
                 "multiline" mode.  There is a limit to the  number  of  lines
                 that can be matched, imposed by the way that pcregrep buffers
                 the input file as it scans it. However, pcregrep ensures that
                 at least 8K characters or the rest of the document (whichever
                 is the shorter)  are  available  for  forward  matching,  and
                 similarly  the  previous  8K  characters (or all the previous
                 characters, if fewer than 8K) are guaranteed to be  available
                 for lookbehind assertions.

       -N newline-type, --newline=newline-type
                 The  PCRE  library  supports  five  different conventions for
                 indicating the ends of lines. They are  the  single-character
                 sequences  CR  (carriage  return) and LF (linefeed), the two-
                 character  sequence  CRLF,  an  "anycrlf"  convention,  which
                 recognizes  any  of  the  preceding three types, and an "any"
                 convention, in which any  Unicode  line  ending  sequence  is
                 assumed  to  end  a line. The Unicode sequences are the three
                 just mentioned, plus VT (vertical tab, U+000B), FF (formfeed,
                 U+000C),   NEL  (next  line,  U+0085),  LS  (line  separator,
                 U+2028), and PS (paragraph separator, U+2029).

                 When  the  PCRE  library  is  built,  a  default  line-ending
                 sequence   is  specified.   This  is  normally  the  standard
                 sequence for the operating system. Unless otherwise specified
                 by  this  option,  pcregrep  uses the library’s default.  The
                 possible values for this option are CR, LF, CRLF, ANYCRLF, or
                 ANY.  This  makes  it  possible to use pcregrep on files that
                 have come from other environments without  having  to  modify
                 their  line  endings.  If the data that is being scanned does
                 not agree with the convention set by  this  option,  pcregrep
                 may behave in strange ways.

       -n, --line-number
                 Precede  each  output  line  by  its line number in the file,
                 followed by a colon and a  space  for  matching  lines  or  a
                 hyphen and a space for context lines. If the filename is also
                 being output, it precedes the line  number.  This  option  is
                 forced if --line-offsets is used.

       -o, --only-matching
                 Show  only  the  part  of the line that matched a pattern. In
                 this mode, no context is shown. That is, the -A, -B,  and  -C
                 options  are  ignored.  If  there is more than one match in a
                 line, each of them is shown separately.  If  -o  is  combined
                 with  -v  (invert the sense of the match to find non-matching
                 lines), no output is generated, but the return  code  is  set
                 appropriately. This option is mutually exclusive with --file-
                 offsets and --line-offsets.

       -q, --quiet
                 Work quietly, that is, display nothing except error messages.
                 The  exit  status  indicates  whether or not any matches were
                 found.

       -r, --recursive
                 If any given path is a directory, recursively scan the  files
                 it  contains,  taking  note  of  any  --include and --exclude
                 settings. By default, a directory is read as a  normal  file;
                 in  some  operating  systems  this gives an immediate end-of-
                 file. This option is a shorthand for setting the -d option to
                 "recurse".

       -s, --no-messages
                 Suppress  error  messages  about  non-existent  or unreadable
                 files. Such files are quietly skipped.  However,  the  return
                 code is still 2, even if matches were found in other files.

       -u, --utf-8
                 Operate  in UTF-8 mode. This option is available only if PCRE
                 has been compiled  with  UTF-8  support.  Both  patterns  and
                 subject lines must be valid strings of UTF-8 characters.

       -V, --version
                 Write  the  version  numbers of pcregrep and the PCRE library
                 that is being used to the standard error stream.

       -v, --invert-match
                 Invert the sense of the match, so that  lines  which  do  not
                 match any of the patterns are the ones that are found.

       -w, --word-regex, --word-regexp
                 Force  the  patterns  to  match  only  whole  words.  This is
                 equivalent to having \b at the start and end of the  pattern.

       -x, --line-regex, --line-regexp
                 Force  the  patterns to be anchored (each must start matching
                 at the beginning of a line) and in addition, require them  to
                 match  entire  lines.  This  is  equivalent to having ^ and $
                 characters at the start and end of each alternative branch in
                 every pattern.

ENVIRONMENT VARIABLES


       The  environment  variables  LC_ALL  and LC_CTYPE are examined, in that
       order, for a locale. The first one that is set is  used.  This  can  be
       overridden  by  the  --locale  option.  If  no  locale is set, the PCRE
       library’s default (usually the "C" locale) is used.

NEWLINES


       The -N (--newline) option allows pcregrep to scan files with  different
       newline  conventions  from  the  default.  However, the setting of this
       option does not affect the way in which pcregrep writes information  to
       the  standard  error  and  output streams. It uses the string "\n" in C
       printf() calls to indicate newlines, relying on the C  I/O  library  to
       convert  this  to  an  appropriate  sequence if the output is sent to a
       file.

OPTIONS COMPATIBILITY


       The majority of short and long forms of pcregrep’s options are the same
       as  in  the  GNU grep program. Any long option of the form --xxx-regexp
       (GNU terminology) is also available as --xxx-regex (PCRE  terminology).
       However,  the  --locale,  -M,  --multiline, -u, and --utf-8 options are
       specific to pcregrep.

OPTIONS WITH DATA


       There are four different ways in which  an  option  with  data  can  be
       specified.   If  a  short  form  option  is  used,  the data may follow
       immediately, or in the next command line item. For example:

         -f/some/file
         -f /some/file

       If a long form option is used, the data may appear in the same  command
       line item, separated by an equals character, or (with one exception) it
       may appear in the next command line item. For example:

         --file=/some/file
         --file /some/file

       Note, however, that if you want to supply a file name beginning with  ~
       as  data  in  a  shell  command,  and have the shell expand ~ to a home
       directory, you must separate the file name from the option, because the
       shell  does not treat ~ specially unless it is at the start of an item.

       The exception to the above is the --colour  (or  --color)  option,  for
       which  the  data is optional. If this option does have data, it must be
       given in the first form, using an equals character. Otherwise  it  will
       be assumed that it has no data.

MATCHING ERRORS


       It  is  possible  to supply a regular expression that takes a very long
       time to fail to match certain lines.  Such  patterns  normally  involve
       nested  indefinite repeats, for example: (a+)*\d when matched against a
       line of a’s with no final digit.  The  PCRE  matching  function  has  a
       resource  limit that causes it to abort in these circumstances. If this
       happens, pcregrep outputs an error message and the line that caused the
       problem  to  the  standard error stream. If there are more than 20 such
       errors, pcregrep gives up.

DIAGNOSTICS


       Exit status is 0 if any matches were found, 1 if no matches were found,
       and 2 for syntax errors and non-existent or inaccessible files (even if
       matches were found in other files) or too many matching  errors.  Using
       the  -s  option to suppress error messages about inaccessble files does
       not affect the return code.

SEE ALSO


       pcrepattern(3), pcretest(1).

AUTHOR


       Philip Hazel
       University Computing Service
       Cambridge CB2 3QH, England.

REVISION


       Last updated: 08 March 2008
       Copyright (c) 1997-2008 University of Cambridge.

                                                                   PCREGREP(1)