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Linux Newbie : Why grep almost never yields something productive

Feb 04, 2010, 20:03 (7 Talkback[s])

"Every Linux newbie hears about power of grep sooner or later. But no sooner does newbie try to the grep command the experiment ends badly. The reason grep almost never yields anything productive is because of a couple of issues. The basic problem is lack of knowledge of regular expressions and secondly knowledge of switches of grep. This realization should not deter a new user from using grep. A very nice detailed tutorial of regular expression (regex) is available here. The migrating user having used dir and similar commands in DOS and using windows search box almost never expects (nor can fathom) the power provided by grep.

"Firstly grep means "global regular expression print". Now this means that knowledge of regex is required to be able to use grep effectively. Now what should a newbie do? Wait till user's regex knowledge improves? NO NOT AT ALL. That would scare away the user and never to use grep. Here is the first simple command that would work to display the files in the current directory."

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