exclude patterns in grep

Grep Exclude Word Pattern

Sometimes you may need to exclude one or more words, or even patterns while using grep to search in a file. In this article, we will look at how to exclude word pattern in grep command.


Grep Exclude Word Pattern

It is very easy to exclude word pattern in grep using -v option, which means inverse match. Here is the syntax for it.

grep -v "unwanted_word" file_path

In the above command, you need to specify the word that you want to exclude after -v option, and then mention path of the file to be searched.

Here is an example to list all lines in file /etc/data.txt which does not contain the word total.

$ sudo grep -v "total" /etc/data.txt

You may pipe the output of above command to search for a word, e.g. column

$ sudo grep -v "total" /etc/data.txt | grep "column"

If you want to match a word but exclude another word, you can use the above command, or the below one.

$ sudo grep "column" /etc/data.txt | grep -V "total"

If you want to exclude multiple words or patterns, you can pipe the output of one grep -v command to the next. Here is the command to exclude both total and sum from our file.

$ sudo grep -v "total" /etc/data.txt | grep "sum"

That’s it. As you can see, it is really easy to exclude one or more words or patterns, using grep -v option.

Also read :

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