F. Costa F. Costa - 9 months ago 46
Linux Question

How to escape square brackets in a ls output

I'm experiencing some problems to escape square brackets in any file name.

I need to compare two list. The ls output is the first list and the second is the ARQ02.


exec 3< <(ls /home/lint)

while read arq <&3; do
var=`grep -e "$arq" ARQ02`
if [ "$?" -ne 0 ] ; then
echo "$arq" >> result

exec 3<&-

Sorry for my bad english.

Answer Source

Your immediate problem is that you must instruct grep to interpret the search term as a literal rather than a regular expression, using the -F option:

var=$(grep -Fe "$arq" ARQ02)

That way, any regex metacharacters that happen to be in the output from ls /home/lint - such as [ and ] - will still be treated as literals and won't break the grep invocation.

That said, it looks like your command could be streamlined, such as by using the output from ls /home/lint directly as the set of search strings to pass to grep at once, using the -f option:

grep -Ff <(ls /home/lint) ARQ02 > result

<(...) is a so-called process substitution, which, simply put, presents the output from a command as if it were a (temporary) file, which is what -f expects: a file containing the search terms for grep.

Alternatively, if:

  • the lines of ARQ02 contain only filenames that fully match (some of) the filenames in the output from ls /home/lint, and

  • you don't mind sorting or want to sort the matches stored in result,

consider HuStmpHrrr's helpful answer.