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Java Cookbook by Ian F. Darwin

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Program: Full Grep

Now that we’ve seen how the regular expressions package works, it’s time to write Grep2, a full-blown version of the line-matching program with option parsing. Table 4-3 lists some typical command-line options that a Unix implementation of grep might include.

Table 4-3. Grep command-line options




Count only: don’t print lines, just count them

-f pattern

Take pattern from file named after -f instead of from command line


Suppress printing filename ahead of lines


Ignore case


List filenames only: don’t print lines, just the names they’re found in


Print line numbers before matching lines


Suppress printing certain error messages


Invert: print only lines that do NOT match the pattern

We discussed the GetOpt class back in Section 2.8. Here we use it to control the operation of an application program. As usual, since main( ) runs in a static context but our application main line does not, we could wind up passing a lot of information into the constructor. Because we have so many options, and it would be inconvenient to keep expanding the options list as we add new functionality to the program, we use a kind of Collection called a BitSet to pass all the true/false arguments: true to print line numbers, false to print filenames, etc. (Collections are covered in Chapter 7.) A BitSet is much like a Vector (see Section 7.4) but is specialized to store only boolean values, and is ideal for handling command-line arguments.

The program basically just reads lines, matches the pattern in them, and if a match is found (or not found, with -v), prints the line (and optionally some other stuff too). Having said all that, the code is shown in Example 4-3.

Example 4-3. Grep2.java

import org.apache.regexp.*;
import com.darwinsys.util.*;
import java.io.*;
import java.util.*;

/** A command-line grep-like program. Some options, and takes a pattern
 * and an arbitrary list of text files.
public class Grep2 {
    /** The pattern we're looking for */
    protected RE pattern;
    /** The Reader for the current file */
    protected BufferedReader d;
    /** Are we to only count lines, instead of printing? */
    protected boolean countOnly = false;
    /** Are we to ignore case? */
    protected boolean ignoreCase = false;
    /** Are we to suppress print of filenames? */
    protected boolean dontPrintFileName = false;
    /** Are we to only list names of files that match? */
    protected boolean listOnly = false;
    /** are we to print line numbers? */
    protected boolean numbered = false;
    /** Are we to be silent bout errors? */
    protected boolean silent = false;
    /** are we to print only lines that DONT match? */
    protected boolean inVert = false;

    /** Construct a Grep object for each pattern, and run it
     * on all input files listed in argv.
    public static void main(String[] argv) throws RESyntaxException {

        if (argv.length < 1) {
            System.err.println("Usage: Grep pattern [filename...]");
        String pattern = null;

        GetOpt go = new GetOpt("cf:hilnsv");
        BitSet args = new BitSet(  );

        char c;
        while ((c = go.getopt(argv)) != 0) {
            switch(c) {
                case 'c':
                case 'f':
                    try {
                        BufferedReader b = new BufferedReader
                        pattern = b.readLine(  );
                        b.close(  );
                    } catch (IOException e) {
                        System.err.println("Can't read pattern file " + 
                case 'h':
                case 'i':
                case 'l':
                case 'n':
                case 's':
                case 'v':

        int ix = go.getOptInd(  );

        if (pattern == null)
            pattern = argv[ix-1];

        Grep2 pg = new Grep2(pattern, args);

        if (argv.length == ix)
            pg.process(new InputStreamReader(System.in), "(standard input");
            for (int i=ix; i<argv.length; i++) {
                try {
                    pg.process(new FileReader(argv[i]), argv[i]);
                } catch(Exception e) {

    public Grep2(String arg, BitSet args) throws RESyntaxException {
        // compile the regular expression
        if (args.get('C'))
            countOnly = true;
        if (args.get('H'))
            dontPrintFileName = true;
        if (args.get('I'))
            ignoreCase = true;
        if (args.get('L'))
            listOnly = true;
        if (args.get('N'))
            numbered = true;
        if (args.get('S'))
            silent = true;
        if (args.get('V'))
            inVert = true;
        int caseMode = ignoreCase?RE.MATCH_CASEINDEPENDENT:RE.MATCH_NORMAL;
        pattern = new RE(arg, caseMode);
    /** Do the work of scanning one file
     * @param    patt    RE    Regular Expression object
     * @param    ifile    Reader    Reader object already open
     * @param    fileName String    Name of the input file
    public void process(Reader ifile, String fileName) {

        String line;
        int matches = 0;

        try {
            d = new BufferedReader(ifile);
            while ((line = d.readLine(  )) != null) {
                if (pattern.match(line)) {
                    if (countOnly)
                    else {
                    if (!dontPrintFileName)
                        System.out.print(fileName + ": ");
                } else if (inVert) {
            if (countOnly)
                System.out.println(matches + " matches in " + fileName);
            d.close(  );
        } catch (IOException e) { System.err.println(e); }

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