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Linux in a Nutshell, 6th Edition by Robert Love, Stephen Figgins, Ellen Siever, Arnold Robbins

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Implementation Limits

Many versions of awk have various implementation limits, on things such as:

  • Number of fields per record

  • Number of characters per input record

  • Number of characters per output record

  • Number of characters per field

  • Number of characters per printf string

  • Number of characters in literal string

  • Number of characters in character class

  • Number of files open

  • Number of pipes open

  • The ability to handle 8-bit characters and characters that are all zero (ASCII NUL)

gawk does not have limits on any of the above items, other than those imposed by the machine architecture and/or the operating system.

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