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Old 08-09-2006, 06:18 AM   #1
Registered: Jul 2006
Posts: 41

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a simple question

Hi..Is there a bash shell command which exactly selects and returns the given numbered line in a file (ex. 3rd line)?Thanks..
Old 08-09-2006, 06:30 AM   #2
Senior Member
Registered: Oct 2003
Posts: 3,057

Rep: Reputation: 61
Do you mean something like this?
sed -n '3p' file.txt
Old 08-09-2006, 10:02 PM   #3
Valdis Grinbergs
Registered: Dec 2005
Distribution: Debian
Posts: 30

Rep: Reputation: 25
basak and homey,

Here is another way:
head -3 file.txt | tail -1
This captures the first 3 lines of file.txt
then displays only the last of these lines.

This approach can easily be modified to get a range of lines,
for example:
head -2 file.txt | tail -3
gives the third line and the lines directly before and after it (lines 2-4).

'head' and 'tail' are two simple utilities that are very useful when you do not need to do something more complicated with sed, awk, perl, etc. You might want to check out the man pages for both.

If you find another (and especially if you find a better) way, please post it here.
Old 08-10-2006, 12:52 AM   #4
Registered: Aug 2003
Location: Mocksville, NC, USA
Distribution: Gentoo, Slackware.
Posts: 410

Rep: Reputation: 30
Sed makes my brain bleed. I wrote a log stripper which implimented sed heavily... gahhhhh. Worked amazing when I finally figured out how to do all that I wanted to do though... very versatile program.


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