Use awk to grep

I have gawk installed on my Windows 10 machine, but no grep, but still needed to quickly find text in some files.

So I came up with (read: “found on the internet”) this one-liner

@for /f "eol=: delims=" %F in ('dir /b /s [directory]') do
@awk "/[search string]/ {print $0}" %F

Usually I use grepWin for such tasks, but only later realized that a simply Ctrl-C would copy the selected search result to the clipboard – grepWin’s context menu does not have a menu item for this function, even though it has been suggested in a related issue.

I also noticed grepWin has a memory problem if you search huge files on a machine with little RAM. On the other hand, it searches using the Windows codepage rather than the DOS codepage.

1 thought on “Use awk to grep

  1. It is also easy to use PowerShell which has good regex support.

    Get-ChildItem -File -Recurse -path ‘C:/src’ | ForEach-Object { Select-String -Pattern ‘exit’ -Path $_ }^C

    If you are desperate to push as few buttons as possible, aliases can be used. Just don’t put them into a script.

    gci -file -rec ‘C:/src’ | %{sls ‘search string’ $_}

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