[Linux] Find/search text in file under directory

Posted by cikul | Posted in Linux | Posted on 12-03-2013-05-2008


To search text in file under directory/subdirectory, for example we want to find php file under /home directory contains text “eval” in the content, we can use command :

shell [~]# find /home/ -name "*".php -type f -print0| xargs -0 egrep "eval" | uniq -c | sort -u | cut -d":" -f1 | awk '{print "Warning - please check this files " $2}' | uniq > eval.log

Another way we can use grep function

grep -rnw '/path/to/somewhere/' -e 'pattern'
  • -r or -R is recursive,
  • -n is line number, and
  • -w stands for match the whole word.
  • -l (lower-case L) can be added to just give the file name of matching files.

Along with these, --exclude, --include, --exclude-dir flags could be used for efficient searching:

  • This will only search through those files which have .c or .h extensions:
    grep --include=\*.{c,h} -rnw '/path/to/somewhere/' -e "pattern"
  • This will exclude searching all the files ending with .o extension:
    grep --exclude=*.o -rnw '/path/to/somewhere/' -e "pattern"
  • For directories it’s possible to exclude a particular directory(ies) through --exclude-dir parameter. For example, this will exclude the dirs dir1/, dir2/ and all of them matching *.dst/:
    grep --exclude-dir={dir1,dir2,*.dst} -rnw '/path/to/somewhere/' -e "pattern"

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