Non greedy pattern match in sed

Pietro Abate abate at
Tue Aug 13 19:09:38 EST 2002


On Tue, Aug 13, 2002 at 04:25:55PM +1000, Michael Still wrote:
> I would like non greedy regexp matching in sed.
> i.e.
> echo "/* This is a */ test /* line */" | sed 's/\/\*.*\*\//g'
>                                                             ^^
>                                                     Non greedy toggle
>                                                     here?
I hope I'm not going to say something really stupid... but this seams to
me the same reason why you can't parse html with sed...
however if you avoid the .* part of the expression (that is the greedy
part) you can write something like that ... sed 's/\/\*[a-z A-Z]*\*\///g'
but you can't have nested comments.

To parse this line you need something more sophisticated than sed to
take care of the possibly nesting comments (like perl...)

I guess I've not really answered to your question...


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