[clug] easier way to use IFS in bash?

Steven Hanley sjh at svana.org
Tue Aug 10 01:21:43 GMT 2004


Looking at using word splitting in bash, say I have a string and I want to
return the 1st word before a whitespace character or the third word or

The below works

#! /bin/bash

function IFS_word_at_pos () {
  local str1=$1
  local pos=$2
  local i=0
  for word in $str1 ; do
     if [ $i -eq $pos ] ; then
        echo $word

var="zero one two three four five six seven"

res=`IFS_word_at_pos "$var" 0`
echo $res

However it seems long and ugly to have to use a for loop in order to spluit
up some words.

There are the glob based string expansion things you can use such as

res=${var% *}

which would return the first bunch of text before a space in the variable

However it is not generic to whitespace, obays the glob rules and also is
not really what I would be after.

Does anyone have ideas of how to do this in a cleaner manner using the IFS
whitespace stuff?

	See You

sjh at wibble.net http://svana.org/sjh
You are subtle as a window pane standing in my view
but I will wait for it to rain so that I can see you
   Anticipate - Ani

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