Linux Command Library


display lines beginning with a given string

- Look for lines which begins with the given prefix:
look prefix file

- Look for lines ignoring case:
look -f prefix file

[-bdf ] [-t termchar ] string [file ... ]

The utility displays any lines in file which contain string as a prefix.

If file is not specified, the file /usr/share/dict/words is used, only alphanumeric characters are compared and the case of alphabetic characters is ignored.

The following options are available:

Use a binary search on the given word list. If you are ignoring case with -f or ignoring non-alphanumeric characters with -d the file must be sorted in the same way. Please note that these options are the default if no filename is given. See sort(1) for more information on sorting files.
Dictionary character set and order, i.e., only alphanumeric characters are compared.
Ignore the case of alphabetic characters.
Specify a string termination character, i.e., only the characters in string up to and including the first occurrence of termchar are compared.

The LANG , LC_ALL and LC_CTYPE environment variables affect the execution of the utility. Their effect is described in environ(7).

the dictionary

The utility exits 0 if one or more lines were found and displayed, 1 if no lines were found, and >1 if an error occurred.

The original manual page stated that tabs and blank characters participated in comparisons when the -d option was specified. This was incorrect and the current man page matches the historic implementation.

uses a linear search by default instead of a binary search, which is what most other implementations use by default.

grep(1), sort(1)

A utility appeared in AT&T System v7 .

Lines are not compared according to the current locale's collating order. Input files must be sorted with LC_COLLATE set to `C'

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