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Linux Magazine: Macro Magic: m4, Part One

Mar 28, 2005, 07:00 (1 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Jerry Peek)

"A macro processor scans input text for defined symbols--the macros--and replaces that text by other text, or possibly by other symbols. For instance, a macro processor can convert one language into another.

"If you're a C programmer, you know cpp, the C preprocessor, a simple macro processor. m4 is a powerful macro processor that's been part of Unix for some 30 years, but it's almost unknown--except for special purposes, such as generating the sendmail.cf file. It's worth knowing because you can do things with m4 that are hard to do any other way.

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