Content-type: text/html Man page of nawk

nawk

Section: User Commands (1)
Updated: 17 Jun 2005
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NAME

nawk - pattern scanning and processing language  

SYNOPSIS

/usr/bin/nawk [-F ERE] [-v assignment] 'program' | -f progfile... [argument...]

/usr/xpg4/bin/awk [-F ERE] [-v assignment...] 'program' | -f progfile... [argument...]  

DESCRIPTION

The /usr/bin/nawk and /usr/xpg4/bin/awk utilities execute programs written in the nawk programming language, which is specialized for textual data manipulation. A nawk program is a sequence of patterns and corresponding actions. The string specifying program must be enclosed in single quotes (') to protect it from interpretation by the shell. The sequence of pattern - action statements can be specified in the command line as program or in one, or more, file(s) specified by the -f progfile option. When input is read that matches a pattern, the action associated with the pattern is performed.

Input is interpreted as a sequence of records. By default, a record is a line, but this can be changed by using the RS built-in variable. Each record of input is matched to each pattern in the program. For each pattern matched, the associated action is executed.

The nawk utility interprets each input record as a sequence of fields where, by default, a field is a string of non-blank characters. This default white-space field delimiter (blanks and/or tabs) can be changed by using the FS built-in variable or the -F ERE option. The nawk utility denotes the first field in a record $1, the second $2, and so forth. The symbol $0 refers to the entire record; setting any other field causes the reevaluation of $0. Assigning to $0 resets the values of all fields and the NF built-in variable.  

OPTIONS

The following options are supported:

-F ERE Define the input field separator to be the extended regular expression ERE, before any input is read (can be a character).

-f progfile Specifies the pathname of the file progfile containing a nawk program. If multiple instances of this option are specified, the concatenation of the files specified as progfile in the order specified is the nawk program. The nawk program can alternatively be specified in the command line as a single argument.

-v assignment The assignment argument must be in the same form as an assignment operand. The assignment is of the form var=value, where var is the name of one of the variables described below. The specified assignment occurs before executing the nawk program, including the actions associated with BEGIN patterns (if any). Multiple occurrences of this option can be specified.

 

OPERANDS

The following operands are supported:

program If no -f option is specified, the first operand to nawk is the text of the nawk program. The application supplies the program operand as a single argument to nawk. If the text does not end in a newline character, nawk interprets the text as if it did.

argument Either of the following two types of argument can be intermixed:

file

A pathname of a file that contains the input to be read, which is matched against the set of patterns in the program. If no file operands are specified, or if a file operand is -, the standard input is used.

assignment

An operand that begins with an underscore or alphabetic character from the portable character set, followed by a sequence of underscores, digits and alphabetics from the portable character set, followed by the = character specifies a variable assignment rather than a pathname. The characters before the = represent the name of a nawk variable. If that name is a nawk reserved word, the behavior is undefined. The characters following the equal sign is interpreted as if they appeared in the nawk program preceded and followed by a double-quote (") character, as a STRING token , except that if the last character is an unescaped backslash, it is interpreted as a literal backslash rather than as the first character of the sequence "\". The variable is assigned the value of that STRING token. If the value is considered a numericstring, the variable is assigned its numeric value. Each such variable assignment is performed just before the processing of the following file, if any. Thus, an assignment before the first file argument is executed after the BEGIN actions (if any), while an assignment after the last file argument is executed before the END actions (if any). If there are no file arguments, assignments are executed before processing the standard input.

 

INPUT FILES

Input files to the nawk program from any of the following sources:

• any file operands or their equivalents, achieved by modifying the nawk variables ARGV and ARGC

• standard input in the absence of any file operands

• arguments to the getline function

must be text files. Whether the variable RS is set to a value other than a newline character or not, for these files, implementations support records terminated with the specified separator up to {LINE_MAX} bytes and may support longer records.

If -f progfile is specified, the files named by each of the progfile option-arguments must be text files containing an nawk program.

The standard input are used only if no file operands are specified, or if a file operand is -.  

EXTENDED DESCRIPTION

A nawk program is composed of pairs of the form:

pattern { action }

Either the pattern or the action (including the enclosing brace characters) can be omitted. Pattern-action statements are separated by a semicolon or by a newline.

A missing pattern matches any record of input, and a missing action is equivalent to an action that writes the matched record of input to standard output.

Execution of the nawk program starts by first executing the actions associated with all BEGIN patterns in the order they occur in the program. Then each file operand (or standard input if no files were specified) is processed by reading data from the file until a record separator is seen (a newline character by default), splitting the current record into fields using the current value of FS, evaluating each pattern in the program in the order of occurrence, and executing the action associated with each pattern that matches the current record. The action for a matching pattern is executed before evaluating subsequent patterns. Last, the actions associated with all END patterns is executed in the order they occur in the program.  

Expressions in nawk

Expressions describe computations used in patterns and actions. In the following table, valid expression operations are given in groups from highest precedence first to lowest precedence last, with equal-precedence operators grouped between horizontal lines. In expression evaluation, where the grammar is formally ambiguous, higher precedence operators are evaluated before lower precedence operators. In this table expr, expr1, expr2, and expr3 represent any expression, while lvalue represents any entity that can be assigned to (that is, on the left side of an assignment operator).

SyntaxNameType of ResultAssociativity
( expr )Groupingtype of expr n/a
$exprField referencestringn/a
++ lvaluePre-incrementnumericn/a

 --lvalue
Pre-decrementnumericn/a
lvalue ++Post-incrementnumericn/a
lvalue --Post-decrement numericn/a
expr ^
exprExponentiationnumericright
! exprLogical notnumericn/a
+ exprUnary plusnumericn/a
- exprUnary minusnumericn/a
expr * exprMultiplicationnumericleft
expr / exprDivisionnumericleft
expr % exprModulusnumericleft
expr + exprAdditionnumericleft
expr -
exprSubtractionnumeric left
expr exprString concatenationstringleft
expr < exprLess thannumericnone
expr <= exprLess than or equal tonumericnone
expr != exprNot equal tonumericnone
expr == exprEqual tonumericnone
expr > exprGreater thannumericnone
expr >= exprGreater than or equal tonumericnone
expr ~ exprERE matchnumericnone
expr !~ exprERE non-match numericnone
expr in arrayArray membershipnumericleft
( index ) inMulti-dimension arraynumericleft

    array
membership
expr &&
exprLogical ANDnumericleft
expr ||
exprLogical ORnumericleft
expr1 ?
expr2Conditional expressiontype of selectedright

    : expr3
expr2 or
expr3
lvalue ^=
exprExponentiationnumericright
assignment
lvalue %= exprModulus assignmentnumericright
lvalue *= exprMultiplicationnumericright
assignment
lvalue /= exprDivision assignmentnumericright
lvalue += exprAddition assignmentnumericright
lvalue -=
exprSubtraction assignmentnumericright
lvalue =
exprAssignmenttype of exprright

Each expression has either a string value, a numeric value or both. Except as stated for specific contexts, the value of an expression is implicitly converted to the type needed for the context in which it is used. A string value is converted to a numeric value by the equivalent of the following calls:

setlocale(LC_NUMERIC, "");
numeric_value = atof(string_value);

A numeric value that is exactly equal to the value of an integer is converted to a string by the equivalent of a call to the sprintf function with the string %d as the fmt argument and the numeric value being converted as the first and only expr argument. Any other numeric value is converted to a string by the equivalent of a call to the sprintf function with the value of the variable CONVFMT as the fmt argument and the numeric value being converted as the first and only expr argument.

A string value is considered to be a numeric string in the following case:

1. Any leading and trailing blank characters is ignored.


2. If the first unignored character is a + or -, it is ignored.


3. If the remaining unignored characters would be lexically recognized as a NUMBER token, the string is considered a numeric string.

If a - character is ignored in the above steps, the numeric value of the numeric string is the negation of the numeric value of the recognized NUMBER token. Otherwise the numeric value of the numeric string is the numeric value of the recognized NUMBER token. Whether or not a string is a numeric string is relevant only in contexts where that term is used in this section.

When an expression is used in a Boolean context, if it has a numeric value, a value of zero is treated as false and any other value is treated as true. Otherwise, a string value of the null string is treated as false and any other value is treated as true. A Boolean context is one of the following:

• the first subexpression of a conditional expression.

• an expression operated on by logical NOT, logical AND, or logical OR.

• the second expression of a for statement.

• the expression of an if statement.

• the expression of the while clause in either a while or do ... while statement.

• an expression used as a pattern (as in Overall Program Structure).

The nawk language supplies arrays that are used for storing numbers or strings. Arrays need not be declared. They are initially empty, and their sizes changes dynamically. The subscripts, or element identifiers, are strings, providing a type of associative array capability. An array name followed by a subscript within square brackets can be used as an lvalue and as an expression, as described in the grammar. Unsubscripted array names are used in only the following contexts:

• a parameter in a function definition or function call.

• the NAME token following any use of the keyword in.

A valid array index consists of one or more comma-separated expressions, similar to the way in which multi-dimensional arrays are indexed in some programming languages. Because nawk arrays are really one-dimensional, such a comma-separated list is converted to a single string by concatenating the string values of the separate expressions, each separated from the other by the value of the SUBSEP variable.

Thus, the following two index operations are equivalent:

var[expr1, expr2, ... exprn]
var[expr1 SUBSEP expr2 SUBSEP ... SUBSEP exprn]

A multi-dimensioned index used with the in operator must be put in parentheses. The in operator, which tests for the existence of a particular array element, does not create the element if it does not exist. Any other reference to a non-existent array element automatically creates it.  

Variables and Special Variables

Variables can be used in an nawk program by referencing them. With the exception of function parameters, they are not explicitly declared. Uninitialized scalar variables and array elements have both a numeric value of zero and a string value of the empty string.

Field variables are designated by a $ followed by a number or numerical expression. The effect of the field number expression evaluating to anything other than a non-negative integer is unspecified. Uninitialized variables or string values need not be converted to numeric values in this context. New field variables are created by assigning a value to them. References to non-existent fields (that is, fields after $NF) produce the null string. However, assigning to a non-existent field (for example, $(NF+2) = 5) increases the value of NF, create any intervening fields with the null string as their values and cause the value of $0 to be recomputed, with the fields being separated by the value of OFS. Each field variable has a string value when created. If the string, with any occurrence of the decimal-point character from the current locale changed to a period character, is considered a numeric string (see Expressions in nawk above), the field variable also has the numeric value of the numeric string.  

/usr/bin/nawk, /usr/xpg4/bin/awk

nawk sets the following special variables that are supported by both /usr/bin/nawk and /usr/xpg4/bin/awk:

ARGC The number of elements in the ARGV array.

ARGV An array of command line arguments, excluding options and the program argument, numbered from zero to ARGC-1.

The arguments in ARGV can be modified or added to; ARGC can be altered. As each input file ends, nawk treats the next non-null element of ARGV, up to the current value of ARGC-1, inclusive, as the name of the next input file. Setting an element of ARGV to null means that it is not treated as an input file. The name - indicates the standard input. If an argument matches the format of an assignment operand, this argument is treated as an assignment rather than a file argument.

ENVIRON The variable ENVIRON is an array representing the value of the environment. The indices of the array are strings consisting of the names of the environment variables, and the value of each array element is a string consisting of the value of that variable. If the value of an environment variable is considered a numeric string, the array element also has its numeric value.

In all cases where nawk behavior is affected by environment variables (including the environment of any commands that nawk executes via the system function or via pipeline redirections with the print statement, the printf statement, or the getline function), the environment used is the environment at the time nawk began executing.

FILENAME A pathname of the current input file. Inside a BEGIN action the value is undefined. Inside an END action the value is the name of the last input file processed.

FNR The ordinal number of the current record in the current file. Inside a BEGIN action the value is zero. Inside an END action the value is the number of the last record processed in the last file processed.

FS Input field separator regular expression; a space character by default.

NF The number of fields in the current record. Inside a BEGIN action, the use of NF is undefined unless a getline function without a var argument is executed previously. Inside an END action, NF retains the value it had for the last record read, unless a subsequent, redirected, getline function without a var argument is performed prior to entering the END action.

NR The ordinal number of the current record from the start of input. Inside a BEGIN action the value is zero. Inside an END action the value is the number of the last record processed.

OFMT The printf format for converting numbers to strings in output statements "%.6g" by default. The result of the conversion is unspecified if the value of OFMT is not a floating-point format specification.

OFS The print statement output field separator; a space character by default.

ORS The print output record separator; a newline character by default.

LENGTH The length of the string matched by the match function.

RS The first character of the string value of RS is the input record separator; a newline character by default. If RS contains more than one character, the results are unspecified. If RS is null, then records are separated by sequences of one or more blank lines. Leading or trailing blank lines do not produce empty records at the beginning or end of input, and the field separator is always newline, no matter what the value of FS.

RSTART The starting position of the string matched by the match function, numbering from 1. This is always equivalent to the return value of the match function.

SUBSEP The subscript separator string for multi-dimensional arrays. The default value is \034.

 

/usr/xpg4/bin/awk

The following variable is supported for /usr/xpg4/bin/awk only:

CONVFMT The printf format for converting numbers to strings (except for output statements, where OFMT is used). The default is %.6g.

 

Regular Expressions

The nawk utility makes use of the extended regular expression notation (see regex(5)) except that it allows the use of C-language conventions to escape special characters within the EREs, namely \\, \a, \b, \f, \n, \r, \t, \v, and those specified in the following table. These escape sequences are recognized both inside and outside bracket expressions. Note that records need not be separated by newline characters and string constants can contain newline characters, so even the \n sequence is valid in nawk EREs. Using a slash character within the regular expression requires escaping as shown in the table below:

Escape SequenceDescriptionMeaning
\"Backslash quotation-markQuotation-mark character
\/Backslash slashSlash character
\ddd A backslash character followed by the longest sequence of one, two, or three octal-digit characters (01234567). If all of the digits are 0, (that is, representation of the NULL character), the behavior is undefined. The character encoded by the one-, two- or three-digit octal integer. Multi-byte characters require multiple, concatenated escape sequences, including the leading \ for each byte.
\c A backslash character followed by any character not described in this table or special characters (\\, \a, \b, \f, \n, \r, \t, \v). Undefined

A regular expression can be matched against a specific field or string by using one of the two regular expression matching operators, ~ and !~. These operators interpret their right-hand operand as a regular expression and their left-hand operand as a string. If the regular expression matches the string, the ~ expression evaluates to the value 1, and the !~ expression evaluates to the value 0. If the regular expression does not match the string, the ~ expression evaluates to the value 0, and the !~ expression evaluates to the value 1. If the right-hand operand is any expression other than the lexical token ERE, the string value of the expression is interpreted as an extended regular expression, including the escape conventions described above. Notice that these same escape conventions also are applied in the determining the value of a string literal (the lexical token STRING), and is applied a second time when a string literal is used in this context.

When an ERE token appears as an expression in any context other than as the right-hand of the ~ or !~ operator or as one of the built-in function arguments described below, the value of the resulting expression is the equivalent of:

$0 ~ /ere/

The ere argument to the gsub, match, sub functions, and the fs argument to the split function (see String Functions) is interpreted as extended regular expressions. These can be either ERE tokens or arbitrary expressions, and are interpreted in the same manner as the right-hand side of the ~ or !~ operator.

An extended regular expression can be used to separate fields by using the -F ERE option or by assigning a string containing the expression to the built-in variable FS. The default value of the FS variable is a single space character. The following describes FS behavior:

1. If FS is a single character:

• If FS is the space character, skip leading and trailing blank characters; fields are delimited by sets of one or more blank characters.

• Otherwise, if FS is any other character c, fields are delimited by each single occurrence of c.


2. Otherwise, the string value of FS is considered to be an extended regular expression. Each occurrence of a sequence matching the extended regular expression delimits fields.

Except in the gsub, match, split, and sub built-in functions, regular expression matching is based on input records. That is, record separator characters (the first character of the value of the variable RS, a newline character by default) cannot be embedded in the expression, and no expression matches the record separator character. If the record separator is not a newline character, newline characters embedded in the expression can be matched. In those four built-in functions, regular expression matching are based on text strings. So, any character (including the newline character and the record separator) can be embedded in the pattern and an appropriate pattern will match any character. However, in all nawk regular expression matching, the use of one or more NUL characters in the pattern, input record or text string produces undefined results.  

Patterns

A pattern is any valid expression, a range specified by two expressions separated by comma, or one of the two special patterns BEGIN or END.  

Special Patterns

The nawk utility recognizes two special patterns, BEGIN and END. Each BEGIN pattern is matched once and its associated action executed before the first record of input is read (except possibly by use of the getline function in a prior BEGIN action) and before command line assignment is done. Each END pattern is matched once and its associated action executed after the last record of input has been read. These two patterns have associated actions.

BEGIN and END do not combine with other patterns. Multiple BEGIN and END patterns are allowed. The actions associated with the BEGIN patterns are executed in the order specified in the program, as are the END actions. An END pattern can precede a BEGIN pattern in a program.

If an nawk program consists of only actions with the pattern BEGIN, and the BEGIN action contains no getline function, nawk exits without reading its input when the last statement in the last BEGIN action is executed. If an nawk program consists of only actions with the pattern END or only actions with the patterns BEGIN and END, the input is read before the statements in the END actions are executed.  

Expression Patterns

An expression pattern is evaluated as if it were an expression in a Boolean context. If the result is true, the pattern is considered to match, and the associated action (if any) is executed. If the result is false, the action is not executed.  

Pattern Ranges

A pattern range consists of two expressions separated by a comma. In this case, the action is performed for all records between a match of the first expression and the following match of the second expression, inclusive. At this point, the pattern range can be repeated starting at input records subsequent to the end of the matched range.  

Actions

An action is a sequence of statements. A statement may be one of the following:

if ( expression ) statement [ else statement ]
while ( expression ) statement 
do statement while ( expression )
for ( expression ; expression ; expression ) statement 
for ( var in array ) statement 
delete array[subscript] #delete an array element
break
continue
{ [ statement ] ... }
expression        # commonly variable = expression
print [ expression-list ] [ >expression ]
printf format [ ,expression-list ] [ >expression ]
next              # skip remaining patterns on this input line
exit [expr] # skip the rest of the input; exit status is expr
return [expr]

Any single statement can be replaced by a statement list enclosed in braces. The statements are terminated by newline characters or semicolons, and are executed sequentially in the order that they appear.

The next statement causes all further processing of the current input record to be abandoned. The behavior is undefined if a next statement appears or is invoked in a BEGIN or END action.

The exit statement invokes all END actions in the order in which they occur in the program source and then terminate the program without reading further input. An exit statement inside an END action terminates the program without further execution of END actions. If an expression is specified in an exit statement, its numeric value is the exit status of nawk, unless subsequent errors are encountered or a subsequent exit statement with an expression is executed.  

Output Statements

Both print and printf statements write to standard output by default. The output is written to the location specified by output_redirection if one is supplied, as follows:

> expression
>> expression
| expression

In all cases, the expression is evaluated to produce a string that is used as a full pathname to write into (for > or >>) or as a command to be executed (for |). Using the first two forms, if the file of that name is not currently open, it is opened, creating it if necessary and using the first form, truncating the file. The output then is appended to the file. As long as the file remains open, subsequent calls in which expression evaluates to the same string value simply appends output to the file. The file remains open until the close function, which is called with an expression that evaluates to the same string value.

The third form writes output onto a stream piped to the input of a command. The stream is created if no stream is currently open with the value of expression as its command name. The stream created is equivalent to one created by a call to the popen(3C) function with the value of expression as the command argument and a value of w as the mode argument. As long as the stream remains open, subsequent calls in which expression evaluates to the same string value writes output to the existing stream. The stream will remain open until the close function is called with an expression that evaluates to the same string value. At that time, the stream is closed as if by a call to the pclose function.

These output statements take a comma-separated list of expression s referred in the grammar by the non-terminal symbols expr_list, print_expr_list or print_expr_list_opt. This list is referred to here as the expression list, and each member is referred to as an expression argument.

The print statement writes the value of each expression argument onto the indicated output stream separated by the current output field separator (see variable OFS above), and terminated by the output record separator (see variable ORS above). All expression arguments is taken as strings, being converted if necessary; with the exception that the printf format in OFMT is used instead of the value in CONVFMT. An empty expression list stands for the whole input record ($0).

The printf statement produces output based on a notation similar to the File Format Notation used to describe file formats in this document Output is produced as specified with the first expression argument as the string format and subsequent expression arguments as the strings arg1 to argn, inclusive, with the following exceptions:

1. The format is an actual character string rather than a graphical representation. Therefore, it cannot contain empty character positions. The space character in the format string, in any context other than a flag of a conversion specification, is treated as an ordinary character that is copied to the output.


2. If the character set contains a Delta character and that character appears in the format string, it is treated as an ordinary character that is copied to the output.


3. The escape sequences beginning with a backslash character is treated as sequences of ordinary characters that are copied to the output. Note that these same sequences is interpreted lexically by nawk when they appear in literal strings, but they is not treated specially by the printf statement.


4. A field width or precision can be specified as the * character instead of a digit string. In this case the next argument from the expression list is fetched and its numeric value taken as the field width or precision.


5. The implementation does not precede or follow output from the d or u conversion specifications with blank characters not specified by the format string.


6. The implementation does not precede output from the o conversion specification with leading zeros not specified by the format string.


7. For the c conversion specification: if the argument has a numeric value, the character whose encoding is that value is output. If the value is zero or is not the encoding of any character in the character set, the behavior is undefined. If the argument does not have a numeric value, the first character of the string value will be output; if the string does not contain any characters the behavior is undefined.


8. For each conversion specification that consumes an argument, the next expression argument will be evaluated. With the exception of the c conversion, the value will be converted to the appropriate type for the conversion specification.


9. If there are insufficient expression arguments to satisfy all the conversion specifications in the format string, the behavior is undefined.


10. If any character sequence in the format string begins with a % character, but does not form a valid conversion specification, the behavior is unspecified.

Both print and printf can output at least {LINE_MAX} bytes.  

Functions

The nawk language has a variety of built-in functions: arithmetic, string, input/output and general.  

Arithmetic Functions

The arithmetic functions, except for int, are based on the ISO C standard. The behavior is undefined in cases where the ISO C standard specifies that an error be returned or that the behavior is undefined. Although the grammar permits built-in functions to appear with no arguments or parentheses, unless the argument or parentheses are indicated as optional in the following list (by displaying them within the [ ] brackets), such use is undefined.

atan2(y,x) Return arctangent of y/x.

cos(x) Return cosine of x, where x is in radians.

sin(x) Return sine of x, where x is in radians.

exp(x) Return the exponential function of x.

log(x) Return the natural logarithm of x.

sqrt(x) Return the square root of x.

int(x) Truncate its argument to an integer. It will be truncated toward 0 when x > 0.

rand() Return a random number n, such that 0 ≤ n < 1.

srand([expr]) Set the seed value for rand to expr or use the time of day if expr is omitted. The previous seed value will be returned.

 

String Functions

The string functions in the following list shall be supported. Although the grammar permits built-in functions to appear with no arguments or parentheses, unless the argument or parentheses are indicated as optional in the following list (by displaying them within the [ ] brackets), such use is undefined.

gsub(ere,repl[,in]) Behave like sub (see below), except that it will replace all occurrences of the regular expression (like the ed utility global substitute) in $0 or in the in argument, when specified.

index(s,t) Return the position, in characters, numbering from 1, in string s where string t first occurs, or zero if it does not occur at all.

length[([s])] Return the length, in characters, of its argument taken as a string, or of the whole record, $0, if there is no argument.

match(s,ere) Return the position, in characters, numbering from 1, in string s where the extended regular expression ere occurs, or zero if it does not occur at all. RSTART will be set to the starting position (which is the same as the returned value), zero if no match is found; RLENGTH will be set to the length of the matched string, -1 if no match is found.

split(s,a[,fs]) Split the string s into array elements a[1], a[2], ..., a[n], and return n. The separation will be done with the extended regular expression fs or with the field separator FS if fs is not given. Each array element will have a string value when created. If the string assigned to any array element, with any occurrence of the decimal-point character from the current locale changed to a period character, would be considered a numeric string; the array element will also have the numeric value of the numeric string. The effect of a null string as the value of fs is unspecified.

sprintf(fmt,expr,expr,...) Format the expressions according to the printf format given by fmt and return the resulting string.

sub(ere,repl[,in]) Substitute the string repl in place of the first instance of the extended regular expression ERE in string in and return the number of substitutions. An ampersand ( & ) appearing in the string repl will be replaced by the string from in that matches the regular expression. For each occurrence of backslash (\) encountered when scanning the string repl from beginning to end, the next character is taken literally and loses its special meaning (for example, \& will be interpreted as a literal ampersand character). Except for & and \, it is unspecified what the special meaning of any such character is. If in is specified and it is not an lvalue the behavior is undefined. If in is omitted, nawk will substitute in the current record ($0).

substr(s,m[,n]) Return the at most n-character substring of s that begins at position m, numbering from 1. If n is missing, the length of the substring will be limited by the length of the string s.

tolower(s) Return a string based on the string s. Each character in s that is an upper-case letter specified to have a tolower mapping by the LC_CTYPE category of the current locale will be replaced in the returned string by the lower-case letter specified by the mapping. Other characters in s will be unchanged in the returned string.

toupper(s) Return a string based on the string s. Each character in s that is a lower-case letter specified to have a toupper mapping by the LC_CTYPE category of the current locale will be replaced in the returned string by the upper-case letter specified by the mapping. Other characters in s will be unchanged in the returned string.

All of the preceding functions that take ERE as a parameter expect a pattern or a string valued expression that is a regular expression as defined below.  

Input/Output and General Functions

The input/output and general functions are:

close(expression) Close the file or pipe opened by a print or printf statement or a call to getline with the same string-valued expression. If the close was successful, the function will return 0; otherwise, it will return non-zero.

expression|getline[var] Read a record of input from a stream piped from the output of a command. The stream will be created if no stream is currently open with the value of expression as its command name. The stream created will be equivalent to one created by a call to the popen function with the value of expression as the command argument and a value of r as the mode argument. As long as the stream remains open, subsequent calls in which expression evaluates to the same string value will read subsequent records from the file. The stream will remain open until the close function is called with an expression that evaluates to the same string value. At that time, the stream will be closed as if by a call to the pclose function. If var is missing, $0 and NF will be set; otherwise, var will be set.

The getline operator can form ambiguous constructs when there are operators that are not in parentheses (including concatenate) to the left of the | (to the beginning of the expression containing getline). In the context of the $ operator, | behaves as if it had a lower precedence than $. The result of evaluating other operators is unspecified, and all such uses of portable applications must be put in parentheses properly.

getline Set $0 to the next input record from the current input file. This form of getline will set the NF, NR, and FNR variables.

getline var Set variable var to the next input record from the current input file. This form of getline will set the FNR and NR variables.

getline [var] < expression Read the next record of input from a named file. The expression will be evaluated to produce a string that is used as a full pathname. If the file of that name is not currently open, it will be opened. As long as the stream remains open, subsequent calls in which expression evaluates to the same string value will read subsequent records from the file. The file will remain open until the close function is called with an expression that evaluates to the same string value. If var is missing, $0 and NF will be set; otherwise, var will be set.

The getline operator can form ambiguous constructs when there are binary operators that are not in parentheses (including concatenate) to the right of the < (up to the end of the expression containing the getline). The result of evaluating such a construct is unspecified, and all such uses of portable applications must be put in parentheses properly.

system(expression) Execute the command given by expression in a manner equivalent to the system(3C) function and return the exit status of the command.

All forms of getline will return 1 for successful input, 0 for end of file, and -1 for an error.

Where strings are used as the name of a file or pipeline, the strings must be textually identical. The terminology ``same string value'' implies that ``equivalent strings'', even those that differ only by space characters, represent different files.  

User-defined Functions

The nawk language also provides user-defined functions. Such functions can be defined as:

function name(args,...) { statements }

A function can be referred to anywhere in an nawk program; in particular, its use can precede its definition. The scope of a function will be global.

Function arguments can be either scalars or arrays; the behavior is undefined if an array name is passed as an argument that the function uses as a scalar, or if a scalar expression is passed as an argument that the function uses as an array. Function arguments will be passed by value if scalar and by reference if array name. Argument names will be local to the function; all other variable names will be global. The same name will not be used as both an argument name and as the name of a function or a special nawk variable. The same name must not be used both as a variable name with global scope and as the name of a function. The same name must not be used within the same scope both as a scalar variable and as an array.

The number of parameters in the function definition need not match the number of parameters in the function call. Excess formal parameters can be used as local variables. If fewer arguments are supplied in a function call than are in the function definition, the extra parameters that are used in the function body as scalars will be initialized with a string value of the null string and a numeric value of zero, and the extra parameters that are used in the function body as arrays will be initialized as empty arrays. If more arguments are supplied in a function call than are in the function definition, the behavior is undefined.

When invoking a function, no white space can be placed between the function name and the opening parenthesis. Function calls can be nested and recursive calls can be made upon functions. Upon return from any nested or recursive function call, the values of all of the calling function's parameters will be unchanged, except for array parameters passed by reference. The return statement can be used to return a value. If a return statement appears outside of a function definition, the behavior is undefined.

In the function definition, newline characters are optional before the opening brace and after the closing brace. Function definitions can appear anywhere in the program where a pattern-action pair is allowed.  

USAGE

The index, length, match, and substr functions should not be confused with similar functions in the ISO C standard; the nawk versions deal with characters, while the ISO C standard deals with bytes.

Because the concatenation operation is represented by adjacent expressions rather than an explicit operator, it is often necessary to use parentheses to enforce the proper evaluation precedence.

See largefile(5) for the description of the behavior of nawk when encountering files greater than or equal to 2 Gbyte (2 **31
 bytes).  

EXAMPLES

The nawk program specified in the command line is most easily specified within single-quotes (for example, 'program') for applications using sh, because nawk programs commonly contain characters that are special to the shell, including double-quotes. In the cases where a nawk program contains single-quote characters, it is usually easiest to specify most of the program as strings within single-quotes concatenated by the shell with quoted single-quote characters. For example:

nawk '/'\''/ { print "quote:", $0 }'

prints all lines from the standard input containing a single-quote character, prefixed with quote:.

The following are examples of simple nawk programs:

Example 1: Write to the standard output all input lines for which field 3 is greater than 5:

$3 > 5

Example 2: Write every tenth line:

(NR % 10) == 0

Example 3: Write any line with a substring matching the regular expression:

/(G|D)(2[0-9][[:alpha:]]*)/

Example 4: Print any line with a substring containing a G or D, followed by a sequence of digits and characters:

This example uses character classes digit and alpha to match language-independent digit and alphabetic characters, respectively.

/(G|D)([[:digit:][:alpha:]]*)/

Example 5: Write any line in which the second field matches the regular expression and the fourth field does not:

$2 ~ /xyz/ && $4 !~ /xyz/

Example 6: Write any line in which the second field contains a backslash:

$2 ~ /\\/

Example 7: Write any line in which the second field contains a backslash (alternate method):

Notice that backslash escapes are interpreted twice, once in lexical processing of the string and once in processing the regular expression.

$2 ~ "\\\\"

Example 8: Write the second to the last and the last field in each line, separating the fields by a colon:

{OFS=":";print $(NF-1), $NF}

Example 9: Write the line number and number of fields in each line:

The three strings representing the line number, the colon and the number of fields are concatenated and that string is written to standard output.

{print NR ":" NF}

Example 10: Write lines longer than 72 characters:

{length($0) > 72}

Example 11: Write first two fields in opposite order separated by the OFS:

{ print $2, $1 }

Example 12: Same, with input fields separated by comma or space and tab characters, or both:

BEGIN { FS = ",[\t]*|[\t]+" }
      { print $2, $1 }

Example 13: Add up first column, print sum and average:

    {s += $1 }
END {print "sum is ", s, " average is", s/NR}

Example 14: Write fields in reverse order, one per line (many lines out for each line in):

{ for (i = NF; i > 0; --i) print $i }

Example 15: Write all lines between occurrences of the strings "start" and "stop":

/start/, /stop/

Example 16: Write all lines whose first field is different from the previous one:

$1 != prev { print; prev = $1 }

Example 17: Simulate the echo command:

BEGIN  {
       for (i = 1; i < ARGC; ++i)
             printf "%s%s", ARGV[i], i==ARGC-1?"\n":""
       }

Example 18: Write the path prefixes contained in the PATH environment variable, one per line:

BEGIN  {
       n = split (ENVIRON["PATH"], path, ":")
       for (i = 1; i <= n; ++i)
              print path[i]
       } 

Example 19: Print the file "input", filling in page numbers starting at 5:

If there is a file named input containing page headers of the form

Page#

and a file named program that contains

/Page/{ $2 = n++; }
{ print }

then the command line

nawk -f program n=5 input

will print the file input, filling in page numbers starting at 5.  

ENVIRONMENT VARIABLES

See environ(5) for descriptions of the following environment variables that affect execution: LC_COLLATE, LC_CTYPE, LC_MESSAGES, and NLSPATH.

LC_NUMERIC Determine the radix character used when interpreting numeric input, performing conversions between numeric and string values and formatting numeric output. Regardless of locale, the period character (the decimal-point character of the POSIX locale) is the decimal-point character recognized in processing awk programs (including assignments in command-line arguments).

 

EXIT STATUS

The following exit values are returned:

0 All input files were processed successfully.

>0 An error occurred.

The exit status can be altered within the program by using an exit expression.  

ATTRIBUTES

See attributes(5) for descriptions of the following attributes:  

/usr/bin/nawk

ATTRIBUTE TYPEATTRIBUTE VALUE
AvailabilitySUNWcsu

 

/usr/xpg4/bin/awk

ATTRIBUTE TYPEATTRIBUTE VALUE
AvailabilitySUNWxcu4

 

SEE ALSO

awk(1), ed(1), egrep(1), grep(1), lex(1), sed(1), popen (3C), printf(3C), system(3C), attributes(5), environ(5), largefile(5), regex(5), XPG4(5)

Aho, A. V., B. W. Kernighan, and P. J. Weinberger, The AWK Programming Language, Addison-Wesley, 1988.  

DIAGNOSTICS

If any file operand is specified and the named file cannot be accessed, nawk will write a diagnostic message to standard error and terminate without any further action.

If the program specified by either the program operand or a progfile operand is not a valid nawk program (as specified in EXTENDED DESCRIPTION), the behavior is undefined.  

NOTES

Input white space is not preserved on output if fields are involved.

There are no explicit conversions between numbers and strings. To force an expression to be treated as a number add 0 to it; to force it to be treated as a string concatenate the null string ("") to it.


 

Index

NAME
SYNOPSIS
DESCRIPTION
OPTIONS
OPERANDS
INPUT FILES
EXTENDED DESCRIPTION
Expressions in nawk
Variables and Special Variables
/usr/bin/nawk, /usr/xpg4/bin/awk
/usr/xpg4/bin/awk
Regular Expressions
Patterns
Special Patterns
Expression Patterns
Pattern Ranges
Actions
Output Statements
Functions
Arithmetic Functions
String Functions
Input/Output and General Functions
User-defined Functions
USAGE
EXAMPLES
ENVIRONMENT VARIABLES
EXIT STATUS
ATTRIBUTES
/usr/bin/nawk
/usr/xpg4/bin/awk
SEE ALSO
DIAGNOSTICS
NOTES

This document was created by man2html, using the manual pages.
Time: 02:39:31 GMT, October 02, 2010