Using Shell Metacharacters

You should know something about globbing before leaving this topic. Globbing is the term for using special characters to match filenames on the command line. Unlike regular expressions, which use special characters to match values in an arbitrary string of text, globbing only operates on the files in the directory you apply them to, usually the current directory.

To appreciate the service globbing provides, it’s helpful to imagine a directory with a few dozen files or more in it. Now say you want a long listing (ls -l) of just six of the files, which have some common element in their names. With globbing, it’s possible to winnow out the filenames you don’t want without having to type in each of the six files you do ...

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