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Old 10-26-2006, 04:41 PM   #1
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AWK Scripting

Hello all...

I am quite a begginner with Linux and I need your help, hope you can bare with me.

I want to use AWK for windows for an required action:
The issue follows:

I have a txt file with a very very long line containing multiples of strings like: bulkbulkSTRINGxxxxxxxxxxxxOTHERSTRINGbulkbulkbulk

The x are letters, 12 of them and I want to have an AWK (grep if possible) to strip to another text file the 12 letters (xxxxxxxxxxxxxx) between the given strings.

I keep trying and no success..

Your help will be greatly appreciated.

Old 10-26-2006, 05:08 PM   #2
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If the file has a consistant location of the xxxxx field. Is it separated by spaces, colon ( : ) or something like that?
An actual snip of the file would be more usefull.
Old 10-26-2006, 05:23 PM   #3
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Is the use of awk or grep necessary?

If the position of the x string on each line is fixed, it is easily done with cut, like so:
cut -c13-24 file
if the x string is positioned from character 13 to character 24.

Otherwise, if the position is not fixed, but rather between STRING and OTHERSTRING as you write, then sed is good;
sed 's|^.*STRING\(.\{12\}\)OTHERSTRING.*$|\1|' file
Old 10-26-2006, 06:32 PM   #4
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Or in awk (as originally requested): :}
awk '{print gensub(/.+STRING(.+)OTHERSTRING.+/, "\\1",1)}' file

Old 10-26-2006, 06:55 PM   #5
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SED is really great to use, here is a site with some useful examples of SED:

Probably the most common commands I use for bash scripting would be AWK, GREP, SED, CUT and the pipe (|) command. Learn how to combine these commands and you have some powerful text manipulation tools.
Old 10-26-2006, 07:10 PM   #6
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In your first message you said that you want to use "AWK for Windows". If you are using Microsoft windows, I would highly recommend installing Cygwin. This will allow you to work in the bash shell and give you all the handy text utilities. With Cygwin/X you can also run X Windows programs such as xpdf or xdvi.

I think that you wanted to add the pattern to another file, which can be done with simple redirection, ie >file2 or >>file2, at the end of the line. Grep also has a 'w" command that can print the output to a file instead. So you could extract different patterns to different files.

If you can download the source for the awk package ( and the awk-doc package ), you can produce a manual and book on AWK and AWK programming. The package should have a "make ps" or "make dvi" or "make pdf" target to produce the books from the source.

Good Luck.

Last edited by jschiwal; 10-26-2006 at 07:17 PM.


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