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Church Of The
Swimming Elephant

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Usage | Options | Commands | Expressions | Addresses


SED Usage
/usr/bin/sed
sed [-n] script [file ...]
sed [-n] [-e script] ... [-f script_file] ... [file ...]
/usr/xpg4/bin/sed
sed [-n] script [file ...]
sed [-n] [-e script] ... [-f script_file] ... [file ...]

A script consists of editing commands, one per line, of the following form:

[ address [ , address ] ] command [ arguments ]
Zero or more blank characters are accepted before the first address and before command. Any number of semicolons are accepted before the first address.

In normal operation, sed cyclically copies a line of input (less its terminating NEWLINE character) into a pattern space (unless there is something left after a D command), applies in sequence all commands whose addresses select that pattern space, and copies the resulting pattern space to the standard output (except under -n) and deletes the pattern space. Whenever the pattern space is written to standard output or a named file, sed will immediately follow it with a NEWLINE character.

Some of the commands use a hold space to save all or part of the pattern space for subsequent retrieval. The pattern and hold spaces will each be able to hold at least 8192 bytes.

sed Addresses

An address is either empty, a decimal number that counts input lines cumulatively across files, a $ that addresses the last line of input, or a context address, which consists of a /regular expression/ as described on the regexp(5) manual page.

A command line with no addresses selects every pattern space.

A command line with one address selects each pattern space that matches the address.

A command line with two addresses selects the inclusive range from the first pattern space that matches the first address through the next pattern space that matches the second address. Thereafter the process is repeated, looking again for the first address. (If the second address is a number less than or equal to the line number selected by the first address, only the line corresponding to the first address is selected.) Typically, address are separated from each other by a comma (,). They may also be separated by a semicolon (;).
 


 

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