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Old 03-19-2009, 01:55 PM   #1
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Are results sent to an output file only at the end of a command sequence?

Hi All,

So I am running the following command to find all the files within a folder that contain either instance of a string:

egrep -lr "headerX|footerX" * >> ~/031909.txt
When I run the command without trying to push the results to an output file I start seeing matches after about a minute or so.

When trying to push the results to an output file (like the example above), there is nothing stored in the file after I let it continue running past the point where I first started seeing matches when testing just the base command (I did a more on the file in a new session while the command was still running. tail -f doesn't show anything as well).

I'm wondering if results are stored to the text file only after the command finishes? The command is going to take a while to run regardless. Just wanted to make sure this is the case, so I don't wait around for an hour to only get a blank file.

Thanks for any explanation or guidance, I appreciate it.
Old 03-19-2009, 04:45 PM   #2
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Results will go to the file imedietly as soon as any output is found.

I beleive its the '*' in your command that could be causing you a problem here. Your trying to search recursivly and using a '*' wildcard as well... replacing the '*' with a '.' will tell grep to search all files and folders from the directory your running the command in and recursivly through all folders. Just try it and see but i've had problems using grep with a * wildcard before, its like it creates a never ending loop... just sits and does nothing.

But definately results will go into the file imedietly.
Old 03-19-2009, 06:34 PM   #3
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There will be buffering involved in both cases - just a matter of degree.


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